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Posts Tagged ‘red-tail’

Red-Tailed Hawk pulled out of Car Grill

October 19th, 2011

Oct 19th : Red-Tailed Hawk Get’s stuck in grill of a car. Story – Video as originally seen on ABC News.

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Introducing Trasher

April 17th, 2011

Introducing Trasher

With the departure of Tahoe fresh in our hearts as the spring continues to unfold, we are working with intermewing a hawk for the summer. We are welcoming “Trasher” in our mews as a resident for the summer. She is 2-year old female Red-Tailed hawk who is a great hunter. We hope she enjoys her stay in our mews for the summer.

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Raptor Mating Season

March 2nd, 2011

Raptor Mating Season

Raptors begin their nesting cycle in late winter / early spring.  I’ve noticed recently that the hawks are already paired up along my drive-route to work.  The other day, I observed three separate pairs of Red-Tailed hawks perching in prominent trees.  These perches appeared to be located near prime hunting grounds and in one case, in the same tree as a large nest.

Hawk nests are found in large, tall trees from 34 to 86 feet high in the forks of large branches and limbs. The structure of the nest is large, flat, and shallow, made of sticks and twigs about 1/2 inch in diameter. Male and female Red-Tails work together on nest construction. Nest sites may be used from year to year, since there is strong evidence that hawks mate for life. If the old nest is damaged by the wind or other weather events, new layers of new nesting material are added. Nests that are reused from year to year can grow to be very large with several layers of materials.

Red-Tailed Hawks are not the only raptors starting to pair up.   A few weeks ago, my wife heard some noises outside the house at night. Deep, resonating hoots could be heard from the backyard as a pair of Great Horned Owls were roosting in the large pine tree back in the swamp.  After listening to them for a bit, we noticed them flying over the house and into the front yard.  Watching them out the front window, in the dark, it was easy to see the big silhouettes high up in the cottonwood tree.  Owls begin their mating cycle earlier in the winter, sooner than Hawks, as the young take longer to fledge the nest.

 

Happy Nesting and Raptor Watching!

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First Hunt of the Season

October 9th, 2010

First Hunt of the Season

This past week has been an extraordinary week of incredible fall weather.  It has been perfect: clear blue skies, an occasional breeze, 70 degrees, crisp-cool nights.  I’ve been so eager to get out into the woods, I can hardly stand it. Crunchy leaves, wonderful fall colors, and the sunlight so bright, it makes each day seem like a jewel to me.  So it wasn’t surprising that I wanted to get Tahoe out into the field as soon as I could.  It may have been a little early, but it was great to get out into the field and let her fly free.

We went to a place close to home because once the sun goes down, it get’s dark pretty quick.  We were out in the field for just over an hour before sunset tonight to get in a few moments of hunting.  What a grand way to start the season!  Tahoe took to a perch and appeared to be enjoying her release for a few minutes before she took off across the field and landed hard underneath a pine tree.  I didn’t make it over to her in time, but I did catch her wolfing down the last bite of what appeared to be a mouse.  When I got over to her, she jumped up into the trees and I couldn’t see her.  The leaves on the trees were just too thick and they concealed her very well.  Once I did find her, I took a few steps toward her and a pheasant went up.  Tahoe jumped out of the trees and nailed it! Wow!   I can only hope that her next hunt is just as successful.

What a great way to end the day; game in the bag, hawk in the box, a proud sponsor,  a smiling falconer and his son enjoying the outdoors together!  Big thanks also go to my wife who helped me get ready for my day.  Thanks Sweetie!

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Great January Hunt!

January 17th, 2010

Great January Hunt!

The mid-January thaw is always a great time to get outdoors.  If you love to ski or sled or toboggan, or just get out, the (relatively) warmer temperatures always make it easier to enjoy the snow. The animals also notice the change in the weather and they become a little more active.  So I like to take advantage of these days as a hunter and get out into the field to chase after rabbits.  Of course, Tahoe loves to fly for them too.  So with the nice(r) weather during this weekend, I wanted to get out and hike through the woods, beating the brush for bunnies.

Marius came with today to get outside and get some fresh air. Besides, what kid doesn’t like to get outside after being INside for a while?  We started out at one of our usual spots, and Tahoe flew through a series of regular perches.  She follows along quite well now, and really starts paying attention when the brush starts shaking. I began walking through the ‘tough’ stuff, and I mean viney, picky, thorny-briar patch stuff.  The kind of stuff that would wrap around your ankles, trip you up, and tear you to shreds on your fall down.  It was a great area because the rabbit-sign (evidence of rabbits) was abundant and fresh, so I couldn’t NOT walk through this swail.  After I had checked as many places as I could, I wandered off to the left to check out another patch, and Tahoe took a second high perch.  I turned around just in time to see her dive out of the tree, and hit the ground hard.  I heard her crunch through the thorny underbrush, and I was concerned about her feathers and feet. When I heard the rabbit cry, I knew she had hit her mark.  I ran over to her and peeled back the brush to give her some room to move.  She had a nice head-hold with both talons, and the rabbit was quickly immobilized.  I traded her off the rabbit to the lure and dispatched the rabbit properly.  After giving Tahoe a few minutes to ‘reset’, we continued our hunt around the park area and finished up without seeing another rabbit.  It was a good hunt!

* I should also note here that photo credits go to Marius!  He took the photo above!

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