Young Red-tail Up Close

Richard Bradus

Well, I'm 0 for 2 for the "rare" birds over the last couple of days. By the time I made it out to the GGP golf course late this morning it had gotten pretty quiet, with no sign of the Hooded Warbler though there were counter-singing Pacific Wrens and Wilson's Warblers and the rather vocal Red-tail family that bred here this spring.

So I decided to do my usual loop around the Bercut area - whoa! There's a whole new horse stables and enclosure adjacent to the maintenance area. Guess it's been too long since I've made the rounds. Continuing around and looping to the south I was stopped in my tracks by a (another) juvenile Red-tailed Hawk on the ground, right off the main paved path paralleling MLK Drive:
Inline image

It proceeded to scrounge through the dried grass (looking for insects?) but all I saw it come up with was a blade of grass stuck in its beak. Eventually flushed into the adjacent trees by passing joggers, it clumsily flew from branch to branch a bit before eventually flying off to a more placid perch in a tree further off the path.

Nothing earthshaking, but a nice diversion nonetheless - one of my closest hawk encounters. More photos for those interested on my eBird checklist:

Happy trails!

Richard Bradus
San Francisco