At the very beginning of this latest snowstorm we had a hawk perch itself in the tree just outside our window.
I shot these pictures right through my window and screen (and the snow). I’m surprised they turned out as well as they did.
First, here’s the hawk.
This tree is overlooking the area of my deck with the bird feeder. I’m guessing he went for one of the smaller birds, missed, and was stopping to rest.
While all the other birds had left, all of the squirrels hadn’t. But that tree is one of their normal exit points from the bird feeder area. So there were a couple of squirrels who really, really wanted to get past that hawk.
That squirrel is probably quite safe. It’s large enough that it’s not part of the normal prey of this kind of hawk. It is doubtful that this hawk would risk getting injured in hand-to-hand (ok, talon-to-claw) combat. Additionally, the modus operandi of hawks is to swoop down from on high using stealth, not to launch itself nearly horizontally at something.
Eventually, the squirrel went down to the ground and climbed up the back side of the tree, getting extraordinarily close to the hawk in the process.
As I said, the squirrel was probably safe, but I bet it was still pretty stress-inducing for it.
Finally, here’s one more shot of the hawk from a different window.
Anybody want to take a stab at identifying it? To help, that branch is 2¾ inches thick (yes, Mr. Anal here measured it), so that hawk is about 16½ inches tall. Male Cooper’s Hawk, maybe?