Red Tails In The Sunset
July 16, 2012, 5:49 pm
Filed under: July 2012

Red-Tailed Hawk rests on a fence post

                                                                   July 16, 2012

      It took quite a few years, but now we have a pair of red-tailed Hawks that nest on our farm every year. Now is the time that they begin teaching their young how to hunt. The screaming hawks fill the sky, floating on air currents and bringing death to any vermin stupid enough to venture out.

     They are fun to watch. They are a bit shy or at least fearful of man, but we do get to see them as they go about their teaching. The young ones watch from the nearby woodline. They too take flight and in no time at all, they become successful hunters. Mom and Dad are awesome flyers that dive on prey in an instant … they rarely miss what they go after.

      Snakes are the funniest things they get. I am pretty sure the snakes are dead by the time the big birds take flight, but the wiggling goes on even as the birds fly out of sight. These birds have not offered to bother any of our livestock or poultry. They do, however, make a large dent in the field mouse population.

      Creating habitat for wildlife is part of our farms mission. Sure, we hunt and fish, so we benefit a little from providing food and cover, but seeing the increase in numbers pleases us. The best part, however, is seeing the diversity as the wildlife numbers grow.

      My next goal is to secure a home for some owls, by providing a nesting box in the upper part of our machinery shed. We have a whole colony of Martins in our Martin house. That was a pleasant surprise. Those airial acrobats are raising heck with the mosquitos… man is that ever nice!

      I miss hearing the bob-white quail, that whistled their name, in the evenings of my youth. I hope to build their numbers here too, but time will tell. In the meantime, I will be content to watch Red-Tails in the sunset.


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