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Warning about a Red-shoulder Hawk Protecting its nest


Jeanette Stone
 

Please be warned.

Yesterday, around 1pm, I was birding the Pismo-Oceano Campground. I was by myself and just walking down one of the main roads. As I passed under the branches of a pine tree I experienced a painful thud on the top of my head. Whatever hit my head knocked my hat off. As I looked up I saw a Red-shoulder hawk flying up to a branch. I searched the area to see if a pine-cone or other object hit me, but found nothing.  I continued on into the second campground area and was swooped on again! The same hawk flew into a nearby tree and was quite vocal. I decided it was time to get out of the area ASAP. I took my hat off thinking that was possibly the trigger and started to walk back towards the main campground when I was attacked on the head again. This time drawing blood! I have a small wound, about a half inch long but not too deep.

 

I am concerned that people, especially if by themselves, may be attacked. This bird seems determined to keep people away from the area. I have no idea where the nest is located nor was I willing to look for it!

 

Jeanette Stone

Atascadero


Kaaren Perry
 

Jeanette and others, 

Thanks for the “heads up” no pun intended.  I don’t think it is just particular bird. It has been my experience that Red-shouldered can be very aggressive especially when near nest or fledglings.  

On Jun 1, 2020, at 8:52 AM, Jeanette Stone <jstone_tierney@...> wrote:

Please be warned.

Yesterday, around 1pm, I was birding the Pismo-Oceano Campground. I was by myself and just walking down one of the main roads. As I passed under the branches of a pine tree I experienced a painful thud on the top of my head. Whatever hit my head knocked my hat off. As I looked up I saw a Red-shoulder hawk flying up to a branch. I searched the area to see if a pine-cone or other object hit me, but found nothing.  I continued on into the second campground area and was swooped on again! The same hawk flew into a nearby tree and was quite vocal. I decided it was time to get out of the area ASAP. I took my hat off thinking that was possibly the trigger and started to walk back towards the main campground when I was attacked on the head again. This time drawing blood! I have a small wound, about a half inch long but not too deep.

 

I am concerned that people, especially if by themselves, may be attacked. This bird seems determined to keep people away from the area. I have no idea where the nest is located nor was I willing to look for it!

 

Jeanette Stone
Atascadero


Tom Ogren
 

I had an unusual bird experience myself today. While I was on my early morning long walk around SLO I spotted a small hawk, I think it was either a small Coopers Hawk or else a Sharp-shinned Hawk, and it was just standing in a large lawn, one that had many gopher holes in it.
I then noticed a very large gopher near the hawk, and it was pretty much just running around in circles, while the hawk just stood there watching it.
I assumed that the hawk had caught the gopher, and then dropped it because it was too big and was fighting back.
When I left that spot the gopher was still running around in dumb circles and the hawk was still just standing there looking at it.
As I continued my walk I wondered what might happen if one of the many crows around here also came on this scene.

Forty-five minutes later as I again was walking by this same area on my way back home...and sure enough, the hawk was gone, and there was a big crow, eating the now dead gopher.


-----Original Message-----
From: Kaaren Perry
Sent: Jun 1, 2020 11:24 AM
To: Jeanette Stone
Cc: slocobirding@groups.io
Subject: Re: [slocobirding] Warning about a Red-shoulder Hawk Protecting its nest

Jeanette and others, 

Thanks for the “heads up” no pun intended.  I don’t think it is just particular bird. It has been my experience that Red-shouldered can be very aggressive especially when near nest or fledglings.  



On Jun 1, 2020, at 8:52 AM, Jeanette Stone <jstone_tierney@...> wrote:

Please be warned.

Yesterday, around 1pm, I was birding the Pismo-Oceano Campground. I was by myself and just walking down one of the main roads. As I passed under the branches of a pine tree I experienced a painful thud on the top of my head. Whatever hit my head knocked my hat off. As I looked up I saw a Red-shoulder hawk flying up to a branch. I searched the area to see if a pine-cone or other object hit me, but found nothing.  I continued on into the second campground area and was swooped on again! The same hawk flew into a nearby tree and was quite vocal. I decided it was time to get out of the area ASAP. I took my hat off thinking that was possibly the trigger and started to walk back towards the main campground when I was attacked on the head again. This time drawing blood! I have a small wound, about a half inch long but not too deep.

 

I am concerned that people, especially if by themselves, may be attacked. This bird seems determined to keep people away from the area. I have no idea where the nest is located nor was I willing to look for it!

 

Jeanette Stone
Atascadero