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The Red-Shouldered Hawks of Deerfield

For the third year in a row, I've found a pair of Red-Shouldered Hawks wintering in a particular spot in my parents' neighborhood. The locals are even familiar with them now, asking me if I'm looking for "the hawks" when I walk by with my binoculars. This time I was able to get good photos of one of them.

They seem to be filling the niche typically filled by accipiters (Sharp-Shinned and Cooper's Hawks) in Ottawa: namely, preying on suburban backyard birds. The one pictured was taking the rather cheeky approach of perching directly above a feeder.

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The classic watchful pose of the Northern Mockingbird. As it happens, this bird was in the same yard as the hawk, so he had good reason to be watchful!

Cape Hatteras in winterVirginia backyard birds


January 25th, 2012 at 5:10 pm
All three, Gorgeous hope the mockingbird stays safe.

January 26th, 2012 at 1:06 pm
Sometimes the hawks win, and sometimes the mockingbirds win... but the photographer wins either way, eh?

January 26th, 2012 at 9:10 pm
Beautiful birds!!! It's too bad they are so darn hard to find in Ottawa!

January 26th, 2012 at 9:18 pm
The south seems to be a more buteo-ful place than Ontario, for whatever reason. I can count on one hand (two fingers, actually) the number of accipiters I've seen in Virginia or North Carolina. But I see buteos repeatedly every time I visit.

January 26th, 2012 at 10:10 pm
Funny, I actually saw one of each today....a Red-tailed Hawk on Moodie while on the bus this morning and an accipiter (possibly a Cooper's Hawk) in Westboro flying off with a small bird! One day I'm definitely going to go birding in North Carolina/Virginia!