1. says

    Here, that’s a sharp-shinned hawk. They have a dangerous method of hunting, crashing into trees and feeding stations. We had one died on our property, sheared a leg during a hunt. Gorgeous birds.

  2. says

    I today for the first time in my life observed such crashing. It happened in a split of a second and to my feeble human brain it took a few second to process what I just saw. The bird swooped above our Aronia, where a lot of the feeds hang, and made a sudden 90 degree sideways turn straight downwards and into the tree. The sparrows and tits whooshed and vanished and the hawk sulked on the hedge for a while before going away.

  3. says

    Yep! I was astonished the first time I saw one crash into one of our pines, and like you, it took a few to process the whole thing. It’s like watching an accident happen.

  4. Raucous Indignation says

    Which one course they would be, what with being such a stylish creature and, you know, it’s snowing!

  5. says

    I jus found out that this species is also present in North America, mostly in Canada and some wintering range in northern parts of US.

  6. voyager says

    Great shots. Those eyes are so intimidating. Definitely not a bird to be trifled with, although crashing into trees does seem somewhat comedic.

  7. Ice Swimmer says

    Fine snowy pictures of a magnificient bird. And yes, definitely a herringbone scarf.

    It’s a good thing goshawks don’t behave like gulls in the city. You can avoid gulls (with their long wings and short tails) while eating your snack by being next to a pole, post, wall or a tree, but with these, there would be no chance when they’d crash into your ice cream or fries.

    In Finnish this isn’t a gos/goosehawk, but a hen hawk (kanahaukka) and they have a reputation of raiding outdoor chicken coops if they can (rarely in this day and age).

  8. kestrel says

    @Ice Swimmer: yes. These birds are specially adapted to go after other birds, and will definitely go after chickens. And it’s not so rare in this day and age! I am on a chicken forum (haha, weird, right?) and there is thread after thread roughly titled, “OMG! There are Hawks!! What do I do!!!” with some people even believing you can somehow stop a hawk from flying through some airspace. LOL. That is not happening. Truth is, chickens are really easy to catch, compared to other birds, so OF COURSE the goshawks, Cooper’s and so on go after them. It’s an easy meal. If you really want to protect those chickens you will have to put them in a covered run, and not many people are willing to do that.

  9. Ice Swimmer says

    kestrel @ 12

    Yes, I can see that a chicken is an easy catch, what I was guessing was that people don’t keep chickens in the open that much nowadays, so goshawks have to rely on more difficult prey.

    I must admit that I don’t venture out in the countryside or even to the outer suburbs that much.

  10. kestrel says

    @Ice Swimmer, #13: I have no idea about the rest of the world, but in the US, at least, there is this growing idea about keeping your own chickens. More and more cities are allowing a certain number of hens; usually, roosters are banned. (I have no idea why. Barking dogs are not banned, so…) Most of these people have either very little or (generally) absolutely no experience with animals. Like, at all.

    Your guess that most don’t keep chickens out in the open is true for people who have experience, because they already know that nearly every predator on the planet enjoys a nice chicken dinner. My chickens are kept in a covered run, with very strong netting on top. Most of these people though want their chickens to roam free, and are absolutely horrified and astounded to discover that this is much appreciated by the local raptors, dogs, foxes, skunks, raccoons, opossums, bobcats etc. etc. They have usually named the chicken and raised it by hand so it’s really a pet more than anything, and when little Fluffy has its head ripped off by a Cooper’s hawk they are not happy. And of course there are all these silly “inventions” that the maker claims will keep away hawks (or owls… or foxes… etc.) as well as much folklore: Oh, just string old CDs on fishing line! Get these flashing lights that look like predator eyes! Get this plastic owl, hawks hate owls and will stay away! (Have a look, you can see how effective plastic owls are: ) Actually, none of these work. What works is to keep the chickens in a very tight covered run and to lock them in the coop at night. But none of those people want to hear that; they want a magical cure. :-)

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