The Hawk juveniles are advancing into "killer" mode - June 13th, 2012

3:35PM. A Hawk-watching friend who wished to remain anonymous gave me permission to post what was observed in Washington Square Park this morning between the two hawk babies and Rosie.

One of the juveniles flew from a park tree to the ground and landed on a rat. It was unclear whether the little Hawk killed the rat or pounced on a body that had been left behind. In either case, the juvenile grabbed the rat with her talons and kicked at it several times, seemingly to make sure it was dead. It was around this point when Rosie flew to a nearby tree to observe the goings-on.

The juvenile then ate the rat where it lay on the ground. The section of the park where this happened is affectionately known as The Hunting Grounds or Quantico, since it is where the adult Hawks train their offspring to hunt prey. The area is fenced off from people as it is undergoing renovation. 

While the juvenile was eating the rat, her sister (I don't know the genders of the juveniles so I refer to them as female in the same way one would refer to a ship as female) flew to a nearby tree and cried out as if begging for a morsel. She did not fly to or try to eat any of the meal though. Instead, she flew to another section of the park and practiced her killing skills on a tree, breaking off a large hunk of bark and biting and kicking at it.

It's delightful knowing the little Hawks are advancing nicely and that it looks like they will be great hunters!