Joining The Hunt
I returned to work in Lansing today after a long holiday break. It sucked. I usually work 8:00-4:30, but today I had to leave at 4:15 to run a quick errand. As fortune would have it, while walking to my car at 4:15, a Sharp-shinned Hawk flew down the road in the direction of my office. Awesome! As I ran over to I.D. it (Even when I have my binoculars, it is tough to tell the difference between a Sharp-shinned and Cooper’s Hawk) I saw it stoop on a group of House Sparrows congregating in the bushes near the sidewalk. After missing, it (she, I think) flew to the tree near me and perched right next to me! I snapped this photo with my phone (P.O.S.)
At first I thought it was the local Cooper’s Hawk, but its small stature, dark nape, rounded head, and square tail convinced me otherwise. Oh yeah, and the sharp shins.
So there we were, me staring at the bird, and the bird staring at the bushes. The sparrows seemed to be wise to the situation, so I decided to step in. I went over to the bushes, grabbed one, and shook. A few sparrows took flight, and the hawk immediately stooped. She missed again, much to my disappointment, and then flew away, nearly hitting me in the head as she passed.
I was disappointed that I didn’t get to see the hawk crush a sparrow, but it was still cool. Also, don’t feel pity for the House Sparrows. They suck. I have a neighbor that feeds them, and now they are everywhere, driving off all of the other birds.