Monday, December 19, 2005

December 19, 2005

The word of the day is hawk. Today while on the River Walk we saw a small, rather nondescript hawk sitting on the railing. I am pretty sure it wasn't a kestrel or peregrine. Then this afternoon, I saw another, similar hawk on the fence around my pond.I studied it for a while with the binoculars, but still don't know for sure what it was. I suspect it may have been a male Cooper or a sharp-shinned. It had a gray back and a rufous-speckled chest. The tail was gray and blunt, with thick dark bands and a rim of white at the end. I didn't see any identification bands on its leg.

We are approaching the shortest day of the year. We've had a few freezes, but it's a warm winter. My roses are still blooming, and the only thing that has frozen back is the lantana.

My pond area looks rather bare, but I still love looking at it. The other morning when I went out to add water, I saw a road runner, several hummers, cardinals, pyrrhuloxia, the usual cactus wrens, sparrows and woodpeckers, and even the beautiful mockingbird, out in the desert area. The visiting hawk probably thinks it's an all-you-can eat buffet.

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