Handsome, isn't he? Though Red Tailed Hawks aren't exactly rare where we live, seeing one perched on the lines over our driveway is. And to see him/her there twice in 3 days is somewhat of a thrill. Judging by the reaction of an American Gold Finch, whom you can't see on the wire above, it's anything but! The whole time the Hawk was sitting there the Gold Finch was chattering away, sending out the alarm to all the other birds, who seemed to know exactly what he was saying. Seems to me he was putting himself in harms way, but maybe it's that old adage about keeping your friends close and your enemies even closer.
Last night as I scanned the pictures I had taken yesterday morning, this one was by far my favorite. My husband came over to look it since it was pretty impressive. As I scrolled in, low and behold, he has a band on his leg! Click on the picture to see him up close and personal! Try as I might there is just no way to read the #'s, but I reported him anyway, along with his picture. If you ever find a bird with a band, please report it. Many volunteers spend hours upon hours banding thousands of birds. Unfortunately very few are ever actually recovered.
As we looked at his very impressive talons we realized he was resting on one foot with the other one tucked up into his chest. Somehow I don't think he was much of a threat. Mostly just taking a rest. He didn't seem to even notice me ... though I doubt that was the case.
Because of the way the sun was shining on his front side the red of his tail feathers didn't show up. He was a looker all the same ; ) Needless to say, Winston stayed inside for a while.
For more information on how a Hawk is banded you may check out this wonderful POST on Birdchick's blog. Being a woman who loves birds I found her blog to be quite interesting as well as something I would love to do!