The Friendly Red-shouldered Hawk

        A few weeks ago, a Red-shouldered Hawk swooped through our backyard and gracefully landed on a branch. I ran upstairs to get my camera and cautiously creaked the front door open before tiptoeing from the front yard around the house to the back. I was about 100 feet from it at this point and he stood motionless on the branch. Strangely, I did not hear the usual chattering and harassing sounds that the songbirds make at birds of prey. It was actually quite silent aside from a squirrel who was croaking away at the hawk. I slowly stepped closer and closer until I was about 30 feet away, taking pictures at intervals of about every 5 feet. Eventually, I got too close and he lifted off only to land on a branch 60 feet back in the same yard. I tried to get more pictures, but this time his back was facing me so the pictures were not as pretty. Red-shouldered are suburban forest birds that are the most accustomed of any hawk to human presence. Therefore, I was able to get a pretty good shots. I love seeing these amiable birds of prey in my backyard because of the courageous and intimidating look on their faces.

Red-shouldered Hawk