Hawks and Doves

Rather than being merely thankful during Thanksgiving weekend, I’ve spent the long weekend being productive and trying to get lots of work done.  While staying with my folks I’ve gotten some feeder  watching in , which is a nice change of pace (lots of doves and house sparrows!).  I did take a short break to go walk in the park behind us.  Unfortunately I didn’t grab my binoculars or my camera, so when a hawk flew into the tree across from my mother and I, completely backlit I could make out few details.  What I could make out was:

  • Large hawk (probably a buteo)
  • Dark brown back
  • White rump
  • Tail feathers may have had white edging

We were half a mile from open river,  perhaps 600 from the marsh as the crow flies. However, it was well forested.  The white rump typically screams Northern Harrier, but the coloring appeared too dark, and my sense is that they don’t go into wooded areas.

It could have been an immature Red-tailed with funky variation in color.  Probably was…

The other possibility I didn’t come up with until I arrived back home was Rough-Legged Hawk.  Per ebird, they’ve never been listed in my county, but there was a sighting last year about 5 miles south of where I was.   There was also one Rough-legged sighting 20 miles SSW on the same day several hours earlier and several sightings about 35 miles NW this weekend

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