Because the Washington Square Park hawk family is now so famous, many people who have seen red-tailed hawks in the East Village/Lower East Side recently have wondered if they were seeing Violet, Bobby, or Pip. This may not necessarily be the case. There is at least one more red-tailed hawk family in the neighborhood. More specifically, there are at least two red-tailed hawks who frequent Tompkins Square Park and the several blocks West, East and South of that park.
It was these hawks I first noticed and started following/documenting a little less than a year ago. I would visit Tompkins Square Park on occasion and would be lucky enough to see them eating a rat in a tree, communicating with each other, or fly from tree to tree before leaving the park and flying either further East or South.
One of my favorite neighborhood blogs, EVGrieve, has several posts dedicated to the Tompkins Square Park/Lower East Side/East Village red-tails. Here are a few posts from that blog with great photos:
Here are a few photos from the above posts which show Tommy, Tompkins Square Park's red-tailed hawk:
You'll note that the coloring and markings on this hawk are unlike those seen on Bobby, Violet, or Pip.
It was one of these hawks that I am sure I saw flying over Astor Place/Kmart as it headed toward Broadway several months ago. I was told recently that someone saw a hawk above Astor Place within the last couple of days and wondered if it was one of our trio. I would tend to believe it was not.
I bring up these hawks now because reported sightings of red-tails in the area have increased since the emergence of our Washington Square Park hawks and I wanted to let you know that such sightings East and South of Washington Square Park may not necessarily be of Bobby, Violet, or Pip but of this other thriving couple in lower Manhattan. This is a good thing! It means we are fortunate to have such wonderful birds thriving in this gritty slice of NYC.
(Thank you to EVGrieve for allowing me to post these photos of Tommy!)