Weekly Raptor

There’s some discussion in the comments of an article earlier on concerning Cooper’s hawks and pigeons, so I thought a couple of pics of Cooper’s hawks would be appropriate.

DSCF8840 hawkhill outing

This Cooper’s hawk is being rehabilitated at the Marin County raptor facility at Hawk Hill. Despite regulations, many raptors are killed and injured every year by people who shoot at them or trap them without permits. This Cooper’s hawk was fortunate; its injuries were not permanently debilitating and it was released shortly after I took this picture.

DSCF8722 coops 2004 918 ws

This Cooper’s hawk was a frequent visitor to our backyard, where he kept a close eye on our pigeon loft. He took quite a few of our young pigeons as they were learning to fly. I was perhaps thirty feet away when I took this picture; it isn’t often that you can get that close to a wild raptor on a perch.

Fuji S2 Pro camera, Nikkor AFS VR 70-200mm f/2.8 lens for both pictures, IIRC.

Wesley R. Elsberry

Falconer. Interdisciplinary researcher: biology and computer science. Photographer. Husband. Christian. Activist.

5 thoughts on “Weekly Raptor

  • 2008/04/12 at 1:44 pm

    The hawk in the upper picture of this post is actually a broad-winged hawk (adult) rather than a Cooper’s hawk.

  • 2008/04/12 at 1:50 pm

    Good thing I didn’t contribute it to WikiMedia and insert it as a Cooper’s hawk on the Cooper’s Hawk entry, then.

  • 2009/03/31 at 12:05 am

    Hey there, stumbled across your blog by accident here and was pleasantly surprised to see the picture of this volunteer from the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory (GGRO, http://www.ggro.org). I just wanted to clarify, though, that the GGRO doesn’t rehabilitate any hawks themselves. It is primarily a hawkwatch- and banding-organization that does research on raptor populations by studying their annual migrations in the fall.

  • 2010/12/27 at 1:59 pm

    I agree with the first commentor….the hawk being cast in the upper photo is definitely a Broadwing and not a Cooper’s….

    I could understand a non-falconer (or even an Apprentice falconer), making this identification error. However, it does make one wonder about the competency of a General or Master-class falconer who can’t tell a Broad-Wing Hawk (a buteo) from a Cooper’s Hawk (an accipiter)!

  • 2010/12/27 at 9:34 pm

    Nice. I’ve accepted correction before on this issue just above in the comments; it isn’t like I’m hiding anything here.

    However, I’m not over-anxious about seeking anybody’s approval of what or how I do what I do. Rusty seems comfortable hunting with me; eighteen times intermewed and counting.

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