More like a really cool pest than predator

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by 21hens-incharge, Dec 27, 2014.

  1. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    I am thinking American Kestrel on this little one.

    It is about the size of a bantam cochin or millie. The branch it is sitting on is only about an inch to inch and a half in diameter.

    [​IMG]

    I only got the one pic before it took off. The hens did not even see it.
    All is well I just thought I would share a little visitor in the middle of town.
     
  2. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    I believe that it is a male Sharp Shinned hawk or perhaps a male Cooper's hawk. Body is a bit too elongated, and tail is too long for a Kestrel.
     
  3. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    You may indeed be correct oh Sour One, but I am going to go out on a limb myself and say that it is a Merlin or maybe a Prairie Falcon. Your right about there not being enough tail feathers for any hawk species, at least a hawk species that I am familiar with.
     
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  4. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    I looked the sharp shinned hawk up and that has to be it. The spotting on the back is exactly like the pics.
    The coloring on the underside is the same too.

    Cool bird IMO. My hens are well secured so I am not worried.

    Thanks for helping to ID the little bugger. Nice to know what is hanging about.
     
  5. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member

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    Perhaps it is a Merlin - all that I have dealt with have been brown (females or juveniles). I did not realize that adult males had the blue.gray coloring. Never have seen one on perch here. All arrived like strafing missiles from above my flocks, and all were migratory - none set up territory in my back yard.
     
  6. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    I am still thinking sharp shinned is correct. The Merlin has a white eyebrow. It is hard to see in the pic but he is looking right at me as I took the shot. No eyebrows that I can see.
     
  7. chickengeorgeto

    chickengeorgeto Overrun With Chickens

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    A Merlin is a falcon, the Sharp Shinned or Blue Darter is a hawk. Falcons and hawks are very distinct from one another, but only on the wing especially when soaring. The big difference is the shape of the wing tips and also in the rapidity of its wing beats.

    When it comes to fantastic feats of flying, falcons are the one bird that can get her done!

    Note that a whole flock of crows don't faze a falcon.
    [​IMG]
     
  8. 21hens-incharge

    21hens-incharge Overrun With Chickens

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    Cool video. That was amazing flying. I would have thought that many crows could have driven it off.
    I do believe raptors are spectacular.

    In looking for info on the hawks and falcons I found this on the allaboutbirds.org
    [​IMG]
    Sharp shinned hawk pic that convinces me it was a sharp shinned hawk.

    The spotting in the wing for sure. The rusty underside and white poofy bottom.

    [​IMG]

    The Merlin has dark barring on the tail and the eyebrow from what I have been able to find on them.
    This pic is of a Merlin in flight from the same website.
    Amazing how similar they are.
    [​IMG]
     

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