Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Bird and Hawk

For those of you that are squeamish, be aware that this is a study of a dead bird that
I found it in the backyard lying on its back.

I ran for my sketchbook because this subject was the perfect model, he wasn't going to move. I once saw Cathy Johnson include a sketch of something dead in her book and decided this was one of those great opportunities for a nature sketch.

The bird looks young and I am thinking it may be in the Thrush family with it's coloring and long pointy beak. I could not see any evidence of obvious injury and am not sure what killed it.
However, I saw this young hawk bathing in my ground-set birdbath right near where I found the dead bird. My husband said a hawk would not just kill something unless they eat it.
Does anyone know what kind of hawk this is?

I am thinking it is a Cooper's Hawk.


  1. Being a bit soaked does obscure the field marks, but this one's a Merlin -- you can see the 'falcon stripes' under his eyes.

    Not sure where you hail from, but based on tail shape and streakiness I'd wager blackbird family for your dead bird (specifically female or juvenile Red-winged, who can have a yellow wash over the face and throat).

  2. Oh wow, thanks! I never even thought of a falcon. Looked it up and its a perfect match. Thank you so much. I always like to put names on things.

    I am in Wisconsin (and need to remember to put that on my labels) and indeed we have lots of red-wings around.

  3. Teri, brava! Yep, sometimes we get to study detail best when we pay these creatures the respect of studying them closely. Good job!


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