Southeastern Central Park Hawks and Ducks - December 5th, 2012

One of the best parts about regularly following birds like the Southeastern Central Park Red-tailed Hawks is learning their regular perches and behavior.

I spent a little over half an hour in the park this afternoon with the Hawks and other local birds. Since I knew from experience that one of the Hawks likes to perch on the north-facing side of The Plaza, it was the first place I looked.

The Hawk was there, sitting on the same exact perch as on November 30th:

Note the young boy gazing out his window (upper-right hand side) above.

For no obvious reason, a flock of pigeons that live at the park's Grand Army Plaza flew up from their perches on the lamp posts and statues and soared in circles above the plaza. 

Because I was yapping on the phone I didn't get to photograph the Hawk hop off its perch, dive down toward one of the pigeons circling below, snatch the pigeon in its talons, then lose its grip on the bird. The pigeon flew away but with a few less feathers than it had before its near death experience.

The Hawk flew around the pigeons for a few seconds:

Some of the pigeon feathers either fell out of its talons or the Hawk let them go:

This Hawk was the one with the tell-tale dot on the underside of one of its tail feathers (a characteristic I hope lasts): 

Circling past The Plaza:

Against the Solow Building:

The Hawk soared in circles for only two minutes before heading northwest over the park:

I walked into the park to check on the Pond's Mallards.

Seeing a Wood Duck was pretty exciting, it was so beautiful:

He spent most of his time swimming near one particular female Mallard:

A Red-tailed Hawk approached and flew above the Pond. I figured it was the 'dotted' adult I had just seen. I didn't realize it was actually a juvenile until I looked at and enlarged my photos when I got home:

The juvenile flew far east from the park and out of view.

I attended to the Wood Duck and his friend again:

It was time to head back to work. I had a look at the Sherry-Netherland Hotel tower in the hopes of seeing one of the adult Hawks perched there as it often is. It was there!

This is the lighter-colored and more tawny brown Hawk that I've been following over the last year (not the darker Hawk with the dot mark on its tail feather):

The Hawk flew northwest and I returned to my office: