View Full Version : See what visited our yard today!

July 24th, 2017, 12:28 AM
I looked out back this morning from my kitchen window & saw this hawk at the water dish! I've never seen one stop for a drink. It was another hot day; it got up to 101. It sat there long enough for me to grab my camera & get a pic. Then it flew up into that honey locust tree behind the shed & sat there in the shade of the leaves for quite a while. I wondered if it might be hunting some of the neighborhood rabbits. But it must not have been hungry. One of the rabbits was grazing on the grass not far away. Then a squirrel came along. It showed no interest in either. We really do have a lot of rabbits around here. Almost any time of the day I can look out & see anywhere from 1-4 rabbits in the front or back yards, the alley behind us, or across the st. in the neighbor's yard. Sometimes they're just sitting out in the middle of the street.

The only other time I saw a hawk in our yard was during the winter time when there was snow on the ground. A hawk flew low over the ground in an attempt to nab one of the smaller birds. One time at dusk, a great horned owl made a swoop down low over the yard looking for a rabbit, but it got away.

Well, you just never know what's going to show up at the water dish.145342

July 24th, 2017, 01:34 AM
How exciting! When we were at the lake last weekend, an osprey came down in the lake right in front of our lot trying to catch a trout, but failed. Well, today it was either another osprey or a young bald eagle. It came down in the shallow water to snag a trout and the only thing you could see above the water line was its head! It was finally able to take off and it did, indeed, have a trout in its claws!

July 24th, 2017, 01:34 AM
So interesting finding the hawks perched in your yard rather than circling overhead waiting to catch a meal. It looks like either a Cooper's hawk or a sharp- shinned hawk to me, and sometimes it's hard to tell them apart. But both of those hawks do drink water daily and like to bathe too. Sometimes you see them wade into a creek and stick their face in the water to scoop up a drink. They throw their head back to swallow since they don't have soft tissue to help manage water. If you have feeders out I bet they like your property a lot.

July 24th, 2017, 02:38 AM
So neat! Once I was looking at the middle of my garden where I had a bird feeder and a hawk swooped in from behind me and totally hit an English sparrow that was feeding on the ground. Blam!

Andrea F
July 24th, 2017, 06:01 AM
How exciting! The only 'wild' animals we get to see here are squirrels.

Star lover
July 24th, 2017, 08:32 AM
How exciting! I've seen a few times, but never that close. We had an American Kestrel sit outside our window for a long time and then it flew to a fence by our side door. We opened the door (didn't seem to bother it at all) and we stood and watched it for a long time. The next day it killed a morning dove (not that sad, we have a million of them) and ate only the head. Flew off, never to be seen again. Not out pic, we were afraid to go for the camera.....


Georgie Girl
July 24th, 2017, 08:48 AM
It's interesting to see and watch the wildlife. We have a lot of different birds as I feed them with different feeders and seed, hawks (like to sit in our trees hunting), deer (they love to feast on my hosta flowers) , turkeys, squirrels ( we've had white ones), chipmunks, and occasionally a coyote will pass through, oh and occasionally a cat wonders through to. We once had a groundhog lurking around but haven't seen one since. I love watching the baby turkeys called poults, they are so cute. It all gives my DH Jim something to watch during the day.

July 24th, 2017, 08:52 AM
We have 2 neighbors who have bird feeders. At least in our location, we haven't been bothered by any bears. They have been sighted in our town in the fall when there are apples on the trees. The areas closer to the foothills & in the mts. frequently have bear problems. It's been so dry this summer, many of the bears are foraging for food, even breaking into houses & vehicles.

Jean Sewing Machine
July 24th, 2017, 10:39 AM
I lived in a rural area for a while, and we had a lot of interesting birds in our yard, plus we had a small lake, and had a variety of ducks, geese, cormorants, osprey. We heard owls and hawks, but seldom saw them. But when I moved back to suburbia, sad to leave my birds, and the very first thing I saw in my yard was a red tail hawk family. They were teaching their young to hunt, saw a lot of rabbits for dinner! We hear several species of owls and see them perched on the high church roof and steeple which is adjacent to my house. Very exciting to see them in daily activities!

July 28th, 2017, 12:38 AM
The hawk was back today & stayed even longer! I looked out the kitchen window & saw the hawk at the bird water about 2 p.m. It sat on the edge for a while just looking all around, then got into the water & sat there a long time. It was a hot day today--in the mid-90's. After while, it decided to splash around & took a bath. It stayed at the water dish for 40 min. No rabbits or squirrels in sight today. But I felt bad for the little birds that couldn't come get a drink because the hawk was hogging the water dish. I replenished the water, & the little birds once again came to drink.

Star lover
July 28th, 2017, 06:55 AM
Joy, how neat is that?! I would love to watch a hawk that close for that long. What a treat!

July 28th, 2017, 12:54 PM
We watched a Scarlet Tanager yesterday, usually you only see them high in the tree tops. This one actually played on the ground for a few minutes. Last week we watched a Pileated Woodpecker completely demolish a tree stump in a couple of hours. Now if we could just direct him to the others it would save us a lot of work.

July 28th, 2017, 01:35 PM
I am impressed you all can identify these birds! I only know robins, cardinals, crows, hummingbirds. Everything else I call "other birds." My backyard flower knowledge is equally pathetic.

July 28th, 2017, 07:42 PM
It helps to have a bird book that describes the various birds, etc. Some birds one may see only during migration times, either spring or fall. I love the Cedar Waxwings. Sometimes a flock will gather in our crabapple trees & eat the dried up apples. The birds we see on a regular basis are: robins, sparrows, finches, starlings, grackles, blue jays, gold finches, occasionally a red winged blackbird, lots of doves (one nested in our tree this year), chickadees, flickers. We don't have any cardinals in this area.

cv quilter
July 28th, 2017, 08:24 PM
Joy, you should be a nature narrator/reporter. Wonderful description. I can almost picture it in my mind. Sounds like a perfect spot you are in to study wildlife.

July 29th, 2017, 12:20 AM
Well, the rabbits are always around! I saw 3 this eve. in the back yard & in the alley. The most I've seen at one time is 4. They're all over our neighborhood. Fortunately , they graze mostly on the grass or weeds, which I don't care about. If they venture into my flower beds, I go out with the broom & chase them off into another part of the yard. They're quite tame. If they see you coming, they just lay down their ears & hunker down. I have to get up close to them for them to move. The do provide quite a bit of entertainment, esp. during mating season when they chase each other around. They look so funny when they hop up high in the air.

Several years ago there were raccoons in the neighborhood. We used to have a golden delicious apple tree; they were able to climb over our 6' chain link fence to get in the yard. We live just 2 houses away from a green belt & a creek. Sometimes ducks fly in low & land in the creek. Twice I've seen a blue heron sit on our neighbor's 2 story house roof, stand on 1 leg, preen his feathers, & look over the neighborhood. They have such a wide wing span.

As to being a reporter -- I did take journalism in high school eons ago. During my nursing career, two other professionals & I started a brain injury support group in our city. I edited, printed, & mailed out a monthly newsletter for all the members.

July 29th, 2017, 01:17 AM
I see an owl once in awhile, usually at night. Hawaii won't let bunnys run lose. We had some that escaped and multiplied on our street. The county came and collected them all. I went to the shelter and none were there. I'm hoping they weren't all dinner.

July 29th, 2017, 03:27 AM
I love watching birds! The church has some wooded areas on their property and we've cut a few paths in it with benches here and there. One afternoon, I saw some big bird swoop down and into the prayer garden area. It tried to land on a branch, but another big bird intercepted and what I thought was a fight was actually a young bird attacking a parent with food. The parent dropped the food and landed on the branch while the young bird fell to the ground with the prey. I watched it for a while, mesmerized and trying to identify the birds. I know they were some sort of a hawk but I don't know much else. I hope to see them another time.

While up in Ft Worth visiting my daughter this month, I found a robin's nest in a neighbor's tree that was planted in the narrow strip of grass between the street and the sidewalk. It was very low, right at eye level, in the crook of the tree. It was empty when I first spotted it, but each successive day had a new blue egg. Eventually the robin laid three eggs, but I left before they hatched. My daughter has been checking on them and all three babies fledged this week.

Back in San Antonio, the cardinal that hatched a pair of babies at my sister's office built a second nest in another bush near the previous nest she made in the spring. She laid four eggs this time and they have all fledged also. It's so cool to watch wildlife.

Patty J
July 29th, 2017, 03:37 PM
Wildlife is one of the big reasons I love to go fishing with DH in Canada in the fall. We see lots of life from the resort we stay at. There are eagles, bears, raccoons, hawks, ospreys, ducks, loons deer (no moose :() Hopefully we will be going again this fall. The eagles are plentiful by the waterfalls and the areas where the fishermen are fishing. It is amazing to watch how far away the eagles can see if a fish is tossed overboard. They sit high in the trees and swoop in to catch the fish with such grace and precision.