© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved. coopers2016-3

Anderson the Cooper’s Hawk

This juvenile Cooper’s Hawk has been posing outside my window all week. I rarely name wild animals, but since this guy is hanging around, I’ve nicknamed him Anderson Cooper. Why does he visit? For the pigeons and starlings that also perch here.

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Here’s some video taken at dusk – please watch in HD

Cooper's Hawk stalking starlings downtown at dusk

Cooper's Hawk stalking starlings downtown at dusk

Posted by Providence Raptors on Wednesday, January 27, 2016

From this angle you can see the thickly banded tail indicating this is a Cooper’s Hawk. A Sharp-Shinned Hawk looks similar, but is noticaeably smaller. Hiding in the rusty ironwork, it has surprisingly good urban camouflage.

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

There have been a few other Cooper’s Hawks downtown lately, mostly juveniles, all lured by starlings and pigeons.

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Here is a juvenile perched in front of the Turks’ Head Building (notice the blurry figurehead in the background).

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Here’s a Cooper’s in the background with a Red-Tailed Hawk in the foreground… both stalking pigeons… you can see the Red-Tail is much bulkier. The Cooper’s is zippier and wilier.

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Young Cooper’s Hawks can migrate great distances. Last spring, a banded hawk visited downtown and I was able to photograph the code while it ate lunch. I learned it was banded at Cape May Point, NJ on 10/25/2014 — 300 miles from Providence.

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

For comparison, here is an adult Cooper’s Hawk near Brown University:

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

Lastly, an old favorite… a Cooper’s Hawk waiting for a bus in Kennedy Plaza:

© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.
© 2016 Peter Green. All rights reserved.

One Comment

  1. Posted 02.18.16 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    What an amazing example of raptor photojournalism! Tremendous photos of a very elusive and fast bird, the Cooper’s Hawk. And I love the ones with two different species hunting the same prey. Well done, Peter!

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