Here is a truth that might be understood only by another birder. I set a goal of 100 species for January which I missed by five birds because I got lazy. So today I figured I would visit our local Harris's Hawk to start to get caught up. I imagined it would be like other times I went to see this majestic raptor - a quick look in a distant tree before it flew off. Oh boy, was I wrong in the best possible way!
From down the block, I spotted the hawk perched upright on the top of a 50-foot pine tree. It seemed that it was far enough and high enough from the road that driving by to get the sun at my back would not spook it. Parking well away I cautiously walked towards the bird using a stand of trees as cover. When I found the right angle, I started to shoot and capture some video. Ten seconds into the session the bird turned to show its profile. I was gobsmacked at how stunning it looked. I took a few more shots, thanked the bird for its cooperation and left. It was a good day!
Harris's Hawks are unique amongst North American raptors in that they create strong social bonds with one another. Groups of seven hawks living and hunting together are not unusual. A hawk of the southwest, they can be found in Texas, New Mexico and, of course, my beloved Southern Arizona high desert.
I am blessed to witness and share the beauty of His world and gratefully remain His scribe.
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