Boise Hawks

April 19, 2016 Update


Mostly the parents are being “good parents” and keeping the eggs protected and warm. There are at least 4 eggs in the nest and no reports of 5 eggs. The weather in Boise is warming up this week, mid to high 70’s and close to 80, but then a cool down next week to the low to mid 60’s. It’s Springtime in the Rockies! This screen capture was taken this morning at 0900. Keep Looking Up!

Teirsil just stopped incubating and is out for a flight. 62 degrees F already and clear skies. Look close and count the eggs.

Tiercel just stopped incubating and is out for a flight. 62 degrees F already and clear skies. Look close and count the eggs.

Eagles at Barber Park, Boise


24Dec2015_1a_Barber-Park_Eagles_SnowRather cold this morning at 9:00 – 29 degrees. But the Eagles were flying. The fish were active and other predators were around. Namely hawks. It was snowing lightly, but the activity along the Boise River was good. There was a report that there were several Eagles and yearlings further downstream from where I was. Robin was waiting in the car, hungry and cold. Best not follow up on that observation. I saw 2 adults and two yearlings, but only got to photograph the adults. Here’s what I saw. Keep Looking up! Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.

Can anyone ID this hawk? Thanks.

Can anyone ID this hawk? Thanks.

Or ID this one?

Or ID this one?

The Boise River looking east from Barber Park.

The Boise River looking east from Barber Park.

Beautiful Eagle!

Beautiful Eagle!

Same one, different pose.

Same one, different pose.

Eagle flying west - downstream.

Eagle flying west – downstream.

Evidently he caught breakfast.

Evidently he caught breakfast.

The Boise River has many fish.

The Boise River has many fish.

24Dec2015_1h_Barber-Park_Eagles_Eating

Good pose!

Good pose!

Coopers Hawk


Shawn-Carmen_Falcon_Graphic-TitledLast night at about 7:20pm, our neighbor Becca called and said that she was out in her backyard, went inside for something and returned to her back yard. She said that “…this bird” was where she was working and that it had not been there before. She brought it to me.
I believe it is a Coopers Hawk. We have had one, or several, in the neighborhood for several years now. I hope this is not one of them. There are no visible trauma marks on the hawk and no signs of anything broken. Here are some post-mortem photos of the hawk. Left-Click to see a larger view. If someone from the Idaho Fish and Game, The Peregrine Fund or The Idaho Bird Observatory would like to have it or examine it, I will keep it for a short time. Please contact me.

Frontside view.

Frontside view. Coopers Hawk a neighbor found in her yard. No apparent wounds. Our neighbor called me last night and said she was in her backyard. Went inside. Came back out and saw this bird on the ground. It was not there before. Looks to me like a Coopers Hawk. No intrusive markings or wounds on the body. Neck is broken as if it hit something. No broken windows, “dusted” glass or prey pieces.

Back view.

Back view.

Cooper’s Hawk Visits Us Today


11Dec2014_1b_Backyard-Hawk_Coopers-With-PigeonThis beautiful juvenile Cooper’s Hawk was having dinner in the alley beside our house this evening. At about 5:30pm our neighbor called and said she saw the hawk take the pigeon and now her was on the ground eating. I grabbed my camera and these photos document what I found. Enjoy! And just to let you know, I have received no reports about the whereabouts of the Boise peregrine falcons. No news is good news. Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.

Juvenile Coopers Hawk at 19th and State Streets in Boise tonight.

Juvenile Coopers Hawk at 19th and State Streets in Boise tonight.

Juvenile Coopers Hawk

Juvenile Coopers Hawk

Juvenile Coopers Hawk

Juvenile Coopers Hawk

GBBC Hawk ID


04Feb2013_1a_Backyard_Sharp_ShinYes. It has been a while! I can tell you this, though. The Boise downtown Peregrines have been spotted around town at different locations and they look healthy. The photo to the left is a Sharp-shinned Hawk that landed in our alley last February and has been seen around the area this year. He has left some “tell tale” signs. Robin forwarded this article to me about how to identify Coopers Hawk and a Sharp-shinned Hawk. It can be extremely difficult. Coopers Hawk and Sharp-shinned Hawk from Feederwatch. From the article,

Sharp-shinned (Accipiter striatus) and Cooper’s (Accipiter cooperii) hawks commonly prey on feeder birds, and they are frequently reported by FeederWatchers. Despite their common occurrence, these hawks present a significant identification problem for many beginning and intermediate (and even more advanced!) birders. There is great variation in plumage and in size for these two species. Therefore, perhaps more than any other similar-looking birds, no single field mark is likely to distinguish one species from the other. Instead, the careful observer must use a combination of field marks and draw from the overall “gestalt” of the hawk for proper identification. No field guide will substitute for plenty of practice in the field.

If you participate in Project FeederWatch, observed one of these two hawks during a FeederWatch count, and are not absolutely certain which hawk you observed, please report the bird as an “Accipiter sp.” (the genus in which these two species are classified).

If you are going to participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count (GBBC), and this is a national event, you can get information from the site listed above. It is free and they do provide you with all the information and resource you will need. Cheers and Keep Looking Up!

Backyard Feeders Doing Fine


10May2013_1c_Backyard-Birds_Mourning-Doves

 

Our backyard feeders are doing their job – keeping us broke in filling with seeds! If you look in the sidebar for the National Bird Feeding Society logo, you can get some good info on backyard feeders. And, for your information, the Boise downtown falcons are doing good. The parents are “talking” to the eggs and rolling them. The signs look good for hatching soon – very soon.
And while we are waiting for the first hatching, we watch our backyard. I have spotted 1 Black-chinned hummingbird, but only one. The Mourning Doves, pictured here, English Sparrows and House Finches are abundant. I even saw a Swainson’s Hawk soaring high over head. Here, take a look. Keep Looking Up and please VOTE above. Cheers! Left-Click to enlarge.

House Finches at one of our feeders.

House Finches at one of our feeders.

House Finch at our "Fountain Bird Bath". It is solar powered.

House Finch at our “Fountain Bird Bath”. It is solar powered.

Swainson's Hawk high overhead .

Swainson’s Hawk high overhead .

10May2013_1b_Backyard-Birds_Swainsons-Hawk

Slow Spring Sunday Afternoon


05May2013_1e_Backyard-Birds_BuddyNice and warm today – 76 degrees here at the house. Even Buddy, pictured here, is a little groggy! The backyard birds are active, at least when the Red-Tailed Hawk and the Sharp-shinned hawk are not around. Good to see the Rock Pigeons, Finchs, Sparrows, Siskins and even the Starling. I did see an American Goldfinch, but only for a fleeting moment.
The downtown Peregrine Falcons seem to be doing fine. The eggs were laid April 1, 4, 6 and 8 so we should start to see hatching sometime this week. I talked to Deniz at the Idaho Fish and Game while at the Boise Bird Festival and she told me that the IDF&G will not be doing a fledge watch this year, as there is no longer money available for the Fledge Watch Team. (The fledge watchers were around many years before the coordinator of the team was a paid position. There is nothing to say that we can not continue in the “non-paid” mode.) Deniz said she would put me in contact with the person who took over for Bruce Haak when he retired, but I have not heard anything. She did say, though, that a phone contact person will be available 24-7. We’ll see.
The Peregrine Fund posted this information the other day. A good read and good information.

May 1
The eggs are now more than three weeks old and everything appears to be progressing as expected. When the male is not incubating during the day, he is busy fulfilling his role as protector and provider.

To humans, the notion of sitting still for long periods of time during incubation seems intolerable, but for birds of prey of both sexes it is normal behavior. They do not waste energy. When birds are flying around, it’s easy to think that is what they do all day. In reality, birds of prey spend the vast majority of their time sitting still, conserving energy until it is time to hunt for food, attack or defend their territory, court, and raise their young.

You may catch the falcons napping once in a while, but they are alert during incubation.

In the meantime, here are some photos of the birds that I saw in our backyard today. Not a spectacular sighting, but fun anyway. Enjoy and Keep Looking Up! Left-Click to see these photos enlarged. And please, VOTE above. Thanks.

Finchs at the bird bath. They do like the solar fountain.

Finchs at the bird bath. They do like the solar fountain.

House Finch

House Finch

Starling

Starling

Juvenile begging for food.

Juvenile begging for food.

05May2013_1a_Backyard-Birds_Adult-Birdbath

Getting a drink of water.

Getting a drink of water.