Posts tagged ‘Raptors’

Generalist raptors

Posted August 24th, 2011 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

So I get an email from a well known Fargo personality a couple weeks ago wondering how common red-tailed hawks are in town. It came complete with photos (shown here) of a bird after having successfully predated upon some feathered creature (young American robin?). Surprisingly, the answer is: not all that common. While the most numerous buteo [...]

Run for your lives

Posted May 3rd, 2011 by kcorliss. Comment (1).

My ever-alert cousin found this local news story (WHDH-TV) out of Massachusetts. I thought it worthy to share given the dust-up playing out in the Forum newspaper regarding peregrine falcons. This one teeters on the ridiculous. At least as far as some of the “expert” quotes. As you will see from clicking the link above (with both [...]

No, this isn’t Duluth

Posted September 13th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

The times I’ve spent trying to watch for migrating raptors here in Fargo have met with modest success at best. We don’t have the natural geography lending itself to funneling soaring birds such as Duluth enjoys with Hawk Ridge. It’s a tad frustrating to see their daily reports while we get squat. Still I try. [...]

Dangerous waters

Posted September 7th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

I’m going to step away from the warmth and comfort of my compound and offer an opinion which might not be well received among the community of bird watchers, at least some of them. It has come to my attention there are some local folks who have taken up a calling of sorts and have [...]

Ultimate Fighter Pilots

Posted September 5th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

I’ve seen some amazing things from airplanes having spent over 20 years as a military aviator. But little of that compares to what the natural world is capable of. I’ve accompanied some falconers on some hunting trips which are very cool to witness. But what must it be like for the birds themselves? A fellow retired [...]

It’s a northern harrier

Posted June 16th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

With reference to the recent photo quiz, here is the correct ID: northern harrier, male. Some years ago this was a raptor called marsh hawk. The name was changed to better reflect its taxonomic place. At counting locations, hawk-watchers refer to male harriers as “ghost hawks,” given their extremely light coloration. It’s a common ground-nester here [...]

Raptors, hands-on

Posted March 17th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

Yet another opportunity came to my attention recently regarding the extending of one’s experience with raptors–again in an academic setting. This time it’s U-of-Wisconsin-Stevens Point. The photos from their website are cool: (But then they probably wouldn’t include shots of folks having a bad time…) Anyway, the cost of the course is $425. What’s the [...]

This has got oops written all over it

Posted January 4th, 2010 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

What do you do if you are a Californian looking to control an exploding squirrel population in your version of Eden? Well, you encourage raptors to perch nearby of course. Such is the case in Contra Costa according to this piece from Mercurynews.com. Contra Costa County is looking for help from predatory birds to control [...]

All talons are not equal

Posted December 9th, 2009 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

Different claws, different killing techniques. That’s the lesson learned from research done by The Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman, Mont. It started with a box of raptor talons from various birds. Then it was video study thanks to sites like Youtube, believe it or not. What they found was fascinating. Turns out, just because [...]

Molt in migration

Posted September 14th, 2009 by kcorliss. Comment (0).

I freely admit I never really thought about this or even paid much attention. But Sullivan and Liguori wrote an article which appeared in the July issue of Birding magazine telling of this phenomenon–raptors molting flight feathers during migration. Almost everything I’ve read says molt (or feather replacement) is an energy-sapping process requiring birds to [...]