Posts tagged “Swainson’s hawks

Hawks on the Prairie

Evening perch - 2013 © Christopher Martin

This summer has been very good for hawk watchers on the prairies around Calgary.  To the west around the Springbank area I have spent a number of afternoons watching mostly Swainson’s Hawks scouting over the fields.

Arond the phone line - 2013 © Christopher Martin

This is a small set from a few of these encounters.  I looking forward to a few more before fall comes and these fair-weather friends head south.

2013 © Christopher Martin

This hawk above was staring me down from her nest while I stopped briefly to see if her chick was looking out yet.  On a separate visit, I saw the young one’s stare was equal to its mother’s.

2013 © Christopher Martin

Earlier in the summer, on the same day as my running fox encounter, I was watching a female hawk on this ranch entrance when its mate swooped down.  When I saw the bird descending, as below, I thought it was attacking but it was getting closer for other reasons.

Could you be loved? 2013 © Christopher Martin

2013 © Christopher Martin

The hawk above had just finished a meal when I came by its perch on a fence near the airport.  It preened for a while before launching for a higher viewing point.  It stayed in the skeleton tree below before flying through the bare branches and gliding over the fields.

2013 © Christopher Martin

On one of the rainy mornings that I was out, this hawk flew alongside me for a few seconds which was really cool.  When it crossed over to the driver’s side and banked back, I caught the nice image of the downstroke of his wings below.

2013 © Christopher Martin

I will be trading the opportunity to photograph these wonderful raptors for the wild residents of Prince Rupert’s coastal rainforest next week.  I’m always excited about a return to the province I grew up in and especially when it is to visit a part of British Columbia that is new to me.  We will see what opportunities present themselves starting tomorrow.