One of my fans (ha!) has asked whether I take blogging requests. Like a radio station. She only recently moved “up country” as we call it here in the hills, and is still in the thrall of the environment. I admit, I too have trouble realizing I actually live in such a place, and am not just on an extended vacation in a wonderful locale.
Anyway, Rae Anne begs me to report on the birds here about. This is easier asked than given. I like to put up pictures with my posts, and, though I do have a few birdie pics in my collection, good ones are hard to catch. It’s true, as she points out, the birds are a phenomenon in this highland country of small farms and big woods. We have Juncos and Sparrows, Chickadees and Towhees, Grosbeaks and Finches. Robins. Crows, Buzzards, Starlings and Grackles. Geese overhead. Nuthatches in the crabapple tree. Mourning Doves expressing their blues. Hawks of various sizes. Owls, deep-voiced or shrill. Steller’s Jays, stellar in their blue and black, Goldfinches, and occasional Mountain Bluebirds. Once we had an African Grey Parrot in the fir trees. We tried to lure it onto our deck with offerings of pretzels and cheese, but it had other engagements more attractive.
One rainy afternoon, a splendid Sparrow Hawk, or American Kestrel came to rest for a while on our deck railing. We went berserk trying to get the camera in position before he flew away. As it turned out, the pretty little hawk was content to remain where he was for several minutes. Here he is, posed in what I consider a miracle of cooperation.
And then, as if to make himself as extraordinary as possible, he turned around and gave us the other view:
The Sparrow Hawk is Falco sparverius.