Sunday, November 2, 2008


I was able to get a quick photo of this hawk sitting on one of the water pans we have outside for the wild birds and bunnies. (I had to shoot through venetian blinds--if I would have gone to an unobstructed window, the hawk would have flown off long before I could have gotten the shot). As near as I can tell, this is a Swainson's hawk, not yet fully mature.

I mentioned once before that when you feed (and/or water) the prey, you feed the predators as well. These hawks know the routine -- the critters gather around before sunset, when I put out rabbit pellets for the bunnies and scratch for the quail and doves. I'm sure there's nothing a hawk likes better than to see a concentration of goodies in the open, all in one small area. (Of course, the #1 thing a hawk likes is to catch and eat one of these goodies!)

Most of the time, the quail and doves see the hawks coming and take cover under cholla cactus long before the predators can snag the prey. But on occasion, a hawk gets lucky -- and we witness what my wife calls "a wildlife moment," when the cycle of life turns a little more in it's never-ending revolution.

This day, all the hawk got was a drink of water -- and the other critters lived another day.

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