I came upon this lovely hawk this morning. At first, I just assumed she was a red-tailed hawk, but looking at the pictures, I’m was not so sure. I asked the Kansas birding list for help and several folks confirmed that she is a juvenile red-tailed hawk. Click to enlarge.
We went back this morning to see how our young friend was doing and found him sitting on top of a pole near the same spot. His sister apparently fledged also. It was great to see them doing well. We also saw some activity at the other nest box. Notice the little face peeking out. Click on pictures to enlarge.
I was on my way back from checking on one of the eagle nests last week when I saw a baby kestrel in the road. At first, I thought he was an injured adult. There are many big trucks that come down this road and I was afraid he was going to get run over. I called Operation Wildlife and the wonderful woman on the line said, “Is his tail about two inches long?” I realized she was asking because he was a baby and his parents were probably around feeding him. I asked her if she thought it would be OK for me to move him into the nearby field so he wouldn’t get hit by a car. She said that would probably be a good idea. I really wanted to pick him up and give him a few pets while I was doing this, but of course, I knew no matter how cute he looked, I could lose a finger, not to mention, terrify him. I grabbed a canvas bag out of the car and used it to scoot him out of the road. He hissed at me a bit, but seemed very curious about what I was saying to him (I was telling him how beautiful he was and giving him a little lecture about staying out of the middle of the road).
After I got him into the field, I heard the parents overhead giving me a scolding, so I figured everything would be OK. We went back to check on him over the next few days and realized that the reason he was hanging out in this area, so near the road, was there is a nest box nearby. Sure enough, another baby was sticking her head out watching. The nest box looked a bit like a phone box, so we hadn’t noticed it before. When we checked on him the last time, he was in the same area, but seemed to be doing a bit more flying. We haven’t been back in several days. I pray that he and his siblings are doing well. We hope to drive back by tomorrow and see if all is well. Click on pictures to enlarge.
We went to see the boys and the nest was empty (I don’t know if they are boys, but I feel they are, so that’s what I’m saying). We figured it was getting close to that time since the last time we were there one of them was sitting in a nearby tree. Here they are on top of some irrigation equipment in a corn field across from the nest. Notice the parent down the way keeping watch. Click on pictures to enlarge.
This morning I discovered one eaglet a few trees over from the nest, on the branch where the parents often sit. His/Her sibling was still hanging out at the nest. I imagine both are flying quite a bit now. Click on pictures to enlarge.
I discovered the nest empty on June 1. This is the last picture I took on May 29. I have to assume the chicks fledged as the nest did not look disturbed and I have seen the parents around the yard quite a bit. I have seen a few young ones staying close to the thickets, coming out to get a few bites from parents. With so many around right now, it’s impossible to tell if any are from this nest. 🙂 Click on picture to enlarge.