juvenile coopers hawk in the grass The Saga
Rufous and Henrietta Hawk

Chapter 3

Site of the New Nest

March 18: Site of the New Nest

This afternoon, Jay and I were driving along the canal on the way home, when I spotted Rufous. "Stop the car!" I yelled. And Jay obliged. We watched as Rufous flew up into a live oak tree with prey of some type. He loudly proclaimed satisfaction with his meal. "Kek kek kek kek kek" he called. We waited until he finished eating to see where he would fly. Then swoop swoop low over the canal, he headed straight for one of our cypress trees.

As we turned to park in front of our condo, we spotted Henrietta perched in a cypress tree. She watched, softly vocalizing, as Rufous flew about selecting sticks and flying up into a live oak on the other side of the canal. Although Henrietta had her back to me, I was able to balance my big lens against a tree and get a couple of photos of her. Then she flew over and into the same live oak where Rufous had gone. Maybe this is where their new nest is! On the other hand, this is the same tree they used as a "screen" last year to fool me. We shall see!

Henrietta watches Rufous Building Nest Henrietta in Live Oak Tree

March 21: Finding the Nest!

We have found the nest! Today I walked over to the tree where we have seen the hawks flying with sticks, and there, in full view is a fairly good-sized stick nest in a state of near-completion. The nest is only about 35 feet up in a live oak tree. The hawks' choice of a location confounds me. They could not have selected a busier intersection, where there's both street and pedestrian traffic. I do hope they will not become discouraged with all the vehicles and walkers and abandon the nest. But they didn't ask me!

March 22: Hawk Flight

As I walked outside my front door, one of the hawks flew from the roof of my house. I was treated to a beautiful expanse of wings, as he/she soared across the street and into a willow tree, calling "kek-kek-kek" on the way.

Continue to Chapter 4: Rufous Preening