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Young Cooper’s Hawks Fledging

8-19-14 juvenile cooper's hawk2 306After a month of living in a nest that measures roughly 7 ½ inches across and 3 inches deep, Cooper’s Hawk nestlings are more than ready to stretch their wings. Although they’ve been dismembering prey (mostly birds and a few small mammals brought to them by their parents) since they were three weeks old, catching prey is a skill they have yet to acquire. For roughly ten days after they leave their nest, the young hawks return to it for continued prey deliveries (and for roosting). During this time the fledglings learn to catch their own prey and they become independent, but they continue to stay together near their nest for the next month or so. (Thanks to Marian Boudreault for photo op.)

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6 responses

  1. viola

    Fabulous picture (as always). Birds are particularly hard… they move!

    August 19, 2014 at 3:27 pm

  2. Hello! Longtime reader and fan here. Thank you for all that you share, I love getting your posts in my inbox in the mornings – it’s a great way to start the day 🙂

    I’m writing because I was out kayaking on a pond this evening and saw something I’ve never seen before in my life and have no idea what it is. I thought you or another one of your readers might be have already figured it out! I had a hard time getting a decent photo, but attached is what I got. It looked something like a cross between a brain and a pineapple, and it had a jelly-like consistency but it held it’s shape when I scooped it towards the surface with my paddle to get a photo. There were several similar masses nearby – some of them growing on bits of beaver lodge wood. They were all underwater, but not very deep – averaging a foot or less from the surface. They were in an area with lots of aquatic vegetation, fish, and all manner of normal pond inhabitants in Lower Togus Pond in central Maine. Some of them had bits of green algea/moss like vegetation growing on them and almost looked like some form of large underwater mushroom. They appeared to ranged in size from about 4″ to 8″ diameter. This is a fairly pristine pond they were in; it’s mostly surrounded by publicly preserved land.

    My friend Robin has guessed that it is a red pine cone that swelled up under water.

    I’d love to know what it is! Thanks in advance for any help you can provide in ID’ing it. 🙂

    Jenn Curtis Augusta, ME

    August 20, 2014 at 1:23 am

  3. Jean Harrison

    Freshwater sponge?

    August 20, 2014 at 9:19 pm

  4. Such a beautiful, stately bird. Too bad they like to raid bird feeders. >:-(

    August 22, 2014 at 1:26 am

  5. Cindy

    Not seeing the photo – but from your description – I believe Pond Lilly roots are huge and have a pineapple looking exterior. I’m told Beavers love them and dig them up to eat. This Spring we found a crazy looking thing in the high water run off debris at Brownfield Bog. A very knowledgable friend thought Pond Lilly root and a quick internet search appeared to confirm it. The section we found was about 12″ long by 5″ wide and sort of cylinder shaped. Could it be that?

    August 22, 2014 at 9:27 am

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