Cooper’s Hawk

First I’d like mention that in the future, all, if any, of our bird counts will be listed at the bottom of my posts.  Also, I have decided to dispense with my Bird of the Week series, because I intend to put the desired information with photos that I post daily.

This is a photograph of a Cooper’s Hawk (Accipiter cooperii).  Ann and I were at the bird-blind at San Angelo State Park yesterday morning.  As we sat and watched, all of a sudden the birds that regularly visit left in a rush.  The reason was that the hawk had swooped in.  He lit in the tree branch, hopefully to catch a meal.  After finding that the birds were in hiding, he eventually flew off, but not before I was able to get a few photos.  I hope you like it.  Click on it for an enlargement.

Cooper's Hawk

Sibley’s describes this hawk as a medium-size accipiter with a relatively large head, long tail and holds wings straight when soaring.  They and the Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus) are similar to the Northern Goshawk Accipiter gentillis) in shape, habits, and plummage.  Northern Goshawks are not usually found in the Concho Valley.  All are agile when pursuing small birds through trees and bushes.  I identified this as a Cooper’s because of the flatter  head and thinner streaks on the breast.

We were only able to spend an hour at the San Angelo State Park bird-blind this morning.  Because of that our bird count that follows is a bit shorter.  Only 14 species.   Just the usual suspects today.  Still waiting and hoping for some Pine Siskins to make an appearance.

Tuesday January 4, 2011 – Total species  14 

White-winged Dove     6
Mourning Dove     2
Black-crested Titmouse     2
Northern Mockingbird     7
Curve-billed Thrasher     2
Spotted Towhee     1
Canyon Towhee     2
White-crowned Sparrow     12
Northern Cardinal     8
Pyrrhuloxia     6
Red-winged Blackbird     100
Western Meadowlark     8
House Finch     12
House Sparrow     2

Happy Birding!!