Sun and heat bath Hawks - December 28th, 2015

Most of the Red-tailed Hawks I saw today were having either a sun bath or a chimney heat sauna.

Who I think was Sadie atop the red tile roof building a couple of blocks north of Washington Square Park (seen through the park trees):

Since I was in the park later than I could normally be, I was visiting at a risky time. I was there during 'the witching hour', the few hours during the middle of the Hawks' day when they typically leave the grounds.

I checked the Con Ed tower to see if Bobby was there since that perch is one of his favorites during 'the witching hour'.

A Hawk was there!

At that distance it was not possible to tell if it was Bobby or one of the Tompkins Square Park Hawks but odds were it was Bobby since he has been there many times.

I was looking at that Hawk through the park trees as well.

You can see the tower in the distance past the park's Garibaldi statue:

I walked to a better vantage point to see the red tile roof Hawk from but the Hawk was gone by the time I got there.

I then walked to Union Square Park, the park closest to the Con Ed tower, to see if Bobby or Sadie was in that park but no one was there (and the tower Hawk was gone as well).

As I made my way south I spotted a Hawk on a rooftop chimney (enjoying some heat). It was not possible to tell which Hawk it was since I had already disassembled my camera but I had seen Bobby on that chimney before so who knows?

I saw a Hawk circling in the sky above Astor Place (another area I've seen Bobby) a few minutes later but I was at a considerable distance from that bird so I could not tell who it was. I was not able to see the rooftop chimney so I couldn't tell if it was the chimney Hawk or a different one. So all told, I either saw three or four Hawks today. :)

Christmas Washington Square Park Hawks - December 25th, 2015

Both Sadie and Bobby were perched around Washington Square Park today.

I first spotted Bobby sitting atop NYU's Education Building (at the southeastern corner of the park):

He was looking over the park:

The nest is still full of plastic and what may be some paper bag material. It may be that the plastic is tamped down enough to not pose a safety hazard to next spring's babies (as a plastic bag was for the 2012 babies).

Sadie was sitting on a regular perch a block southwest of the park:

I left the park then passed through again 2 ½ hours later to see a Hawk on NYU's Education Building. It may be that it was Bobby and that he had never left his perch.

Park arch and Christmas tree in the foreground:

I didn't see Sadie during my second pass through and around the park but that was ok. It was nice to know that they were doing well this Christmas day.

Fundraiser for WINORR (Wildlife in Need of Rescue and Rehabilitation) - December 24th, 2015

I recently found out that Cathy and Bobby Horvath of WINORR (Wildlife in Need of Rescue and Rehabilitation) are in need of funds to help them continue their wildlife rehabilitation work.

It was four years ago today (Christmas Eve 2011) when Cathy and Bobby rescued Violet for treatment of her injured leg.

Their most recent Washington Square Park mission was the release of a female Red-tailed Hawk in January in the hopes of attracting Bobby Hawk to her as a potential mate.

Please consider donating to the Horvaths at their GoFundMe page at this link:

Thank you and Merry Christmas!

Lower East Side Juvenile Hawk eating a pigeon - December 24th, 2015

I was in the Lower East Side of Manhattan this morning when I noticed a flurry of pigeon feathers falling from a fire escape. The sight was so surprising and there were so many feathers I thought, 'That's not a preening, that's a plucking!' 

I followed the feather path and saw a juvenile Red-tailed Hawk eating a pigeon:

The noisy and busy street below:

Feathers were piling up on the sidewalk:

I moved closer for a better look:


Lots of people stopped to watch and chat about the Hawk. Everyone was in a joyful mood (perhaps in part because today is Christmas Eve).

A couple of people mentioned seeing Hawks in the area before. I told them how the nearby adult Tompkins Square Park Hawks were regular sights (since we were standing in their territory) and fun to look out for.

The juvenile ate, rested, then ate again over the course of nearly two hours.


The building's superintendent was cleaning up outside and chatting about the Hawk as well. He didn't mind having to sweep away all the feathers and gory bits from the sidewalk thank goodness.

It began to rain so I packed up and left. I was hoping to see it fly away and follow where it wound up but perhaps I'll run into it again.


Bobby covers Sadie's back and fights a Peregrine - December 21st, 2015

My Hawk visit lasted about an hour and a half today. Over that time a fellow Hawk-watcher and I watched Bobby and Sadie perch and fly no more than a couple of blocks from Washington Square Park.

I spotted Bobby atop a water tower southeast from the park:

My fellow Hawker was in the park, watching Sadie as she sat on NYU's Silver Center Building (a building along the eastern side of the park).

Bobby was sitting east of the roof terrace where he and Rosie would regularly gather nest material from potted plants

My friend notified me several minutes later via text that Sadie had flown off her perch. All of a sudden the birds around me fell silent and I saw some Sparrows and Pigeons flee in my direction (a sign a raptor was flying above). My friend walked over to me and told me Sadie was now on the roof of the building next to us:

She was getting some heat:

Sadie flew off her perch and headed in the direction of the park. Bobby immediately flew to where she had just been perched and engaged a Peregrine Falcon:

The Falcon and one of the Hawks were 'yelling' very loudly.

It was clear that Bobby was protecting Sadie from having to deal with the Falcon herself.

Sadie circled nearby a few times then flew straight toward the park:

Bobby held the Falcon at bay and had a few more air tussles with it.

The Peregrine:

Bobby fending off the Peregrine:

It was all over in a minute. Bobby sat on the south side of the roof terrace:

Sadie was now on the NYU Education Building flag pole (at the southeast corner of the park):

Bobby left his perch and dove toward Sadie and the park.

I lost sight of him because I was a couple of blocks away.

As I got closer it looked like Bobby flew out of the nest before flying to the Judson Memorial Church cross:

Sadie had left the flag pole but I didn't see where she went.

There was a lot of human drama occurring by the park arch (with at least two arrests but I didn't see what happened):

Bobby left the cross the flew low over the park trees.

I followed his path but didn't find him even though I did see a Hawk sitting on the red tile roof a couple of blocks north of the park:

It flew off and began circling lower and lower:

I had to leave so having this Hawk disappear when it did was perfect timing.