Whatever Weds. Red-tailed Hawk Immature

Copyright ©2021 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

Red-tailed Hawks are the most common hawk in North America and certainly the one I see most often. While birding with the birding group a few weeks ago another lady and I veered away from the group a few minutes to check out another path and saw this Red-tail perched with its back to us. It stayed for a good bit then turned and flew right over our heads. That’s when I got this shot. It’s probably a 1st year since it doesn’t have its red tail feathers yet.

Fun Facts- gleaned from allaboutbirds.org

  • The Red-tailed Hawk has a thrilling, raspy scream that sounds exactly like a raptor should sound. At least, that’s what Hollywood directors seem to think. Whenever a hawk or eagle appears onscreen, no matter what species, the shrill cry on the soundtrack is almost always a Red-tailed Hawk.
  • Birds are amazingly adapted for life in the air. The Red-tailed Hawk is one of the largest birds you’ll see in North America, yet even the biggest females weigh in at only about 3 pounds. A similar-sized small dog might weigh 10 times that.
  • The “Harlan’s Hawk” breeds in Alaska and northwestern Canada, and winters on the southern Great Plains. This very dark form of the Red-tailed Hawk has a marbled white, brown, and gray tail instead of a red one. It’s so distinctive that it was once considered a separate species, until ornithologists discovered many individuals that were intermediate between Harlan’s and more typical Red-tailed Hawks.
  • Courting Red-tailed Hawks put on a display in which they soar in wide circles at a great height. The male dives steeply, then shoots up again at an angle nearly as steep. After several of these swoops he approaches the female from above, extends his legs, and touches her briefly. Sometimes, the pair grab onto one other, clasp talons, and plummet in spirals toward the ground before pulling away.
  • Red-tailed Hawks have been seen hunting as a pair, guarding opposite sides of the same tree to catch tree squirrels.
  • The oldest known wild Red-tailed Hawk was at least 30 years, 8 months old when it was found in Michigan in 2011, the same state where it had been banded in 1981.

The Scrub Jays here mimic the Red-tail Hawk’s call and has been fooling me a lot lately! I’ve been listening to calls so I’m not so easily fooled next time. Ha!!😂

After the group broke up I headed east in search of another bird, but had no joy finding it but, the river was pretty. I saw a few mallards, and Yellow-rumped Warblers and people so headed home for lunch.

Truckee River Bend

The image of the Red-tail looks so bad here on WordPress! I’m beyond frustrated with this happening all the time. I haven’t changed the way I process and resize my images in a decade so it must be WordPress! I need a tutorial! Any help or pointers would be greatly appreciated.

My images look fine and the way I want them to on flickr. Here’s the link to the same image of the Red-tail. https://www.flickr.com/photos/dmzajac2004/51529739409/in/dateposted/

See what I mean? I’m really not happy with WordPress at the moment! Any ideas for a not savvy computer person to fix it?

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon 100-400mm| PS CC 22.5| iPhone 7Plus

more to come…

53 thoughts on “Whatever Weds. Red-tailed Hawk Immature

  1. Sad to know you’re disappointed in the hawk shot here, but I’m impressed anyway so your skills remain enviable. The Truckee River Bend shot is gorgeous. Looks so peaceful 🙂

  2. It looks a little bright but still a good mid-air shot. What color space is it? My master files are ProPhoto RGB but when posting online or to Facebook I convert a copy to sRGB (most monitors). For stock and my store I use Adobe RGB 1998.

    1. Thank you, Denise!!
      I was shooting into the sun so it is a little over exposed in background. I use sRGB for the web, in Photoshop I use Adobe RGB 1998. I don’t think I’ve used ProPhoto RGB before.
      When I send stuff to the printer it’s a JPEG and in sRGB. They work their magic there to make my images look good. 😀

    1. It was a neat surprise when it turned and flew right over my head. I was so happy that my reflexes kicked in and got three decent frames.

      Thank you so much, Paul! I hope you have a good week-end!

  3. Any hawk capture is a win to me! I hate when images don’t translate well across different media. Things look amazing in my Pixelmator Editor and then look meh on the blog. 🤷‍♀️

  4. An interesting post Deborah, and a lovely day out with the birding group. The hawk was a great capture and yes I do recall most of the raptor sounds are the same in movies from over there, just like the sound of the Masked Lapwing alarm call is often featured in many of our movies and TV shows when they do not use the Magpie or Kookaburra calls. It is interesting how clever the Blue Jays are, as are many birds in using their mimicry to protect their nests and young. I have been doing a lot of my recent research on their here with our birds and it is quite fascinating how bird communicate between species and use their skills to drive other birds away.

  5. That is so frustrating about WP photos. Since many photographers use the platform they better get a fix. Thanks for the flicker link so we can see the details. After hearing red-tail hawks all my life, I was so surprised to hear a bald eagle call for the first time. I thought it would sound majestic… but it sounded whiney (not a political statement… much 🙂 ).

          1. Just try going to preview and click on tools. Then click on custom size and do a 600×600. Move the photo to a place you can load it onto your blog. Compare that one to one where you use your normal process. See if there is any difference.

  6. Your photos are always well done and interesting. I also really liked the river shot because the landscape is so different. I’m afraid to complain about WP since I’m finally getting Dan’s posts, AND I know my theme is so old that one of these days it just may disappear. I will go check out that link though.

  7. First, what a difference in photo clarity! Second, my blue jays are fooling me a bit, too. We have a hawk family living in our woods and sometimes we hear them talk to each other, or so it seems.

  8. Hah! I totally get about using a “beefier” scream for raptors such as eagles. Now that I see (and hear) bald eagles on almost a daily basis, I am amazed at the puny, tinkle-y sounds they make. I think I have owned wind chimes that sounded more impressive than bald eagles…LOL!


  9. Deja-vu? I’m sure you have asked for help before on this issue? Thing is Deborah wp changed the compression ratio sometime back from 90% to 82% so images are not as sharp. There are ways around this for SOME themes, sadly not mine as I found out after several long discussions with the ‘happiness engineers’. Try reading through this it could be of use for your theme https://www.wpbeginner.com/wp-tutorials/how-to-increase-or-decrease-wordpress-jpeg-image-compression/

  10. Thanks for the interesting info! 🙂 I believe we have a (pair of nesting) Red Hawks in the vicinity, but I’ve never seen them close enough to identify them.

    1. Oh how neat! I hope you do get to ID them some time, but if not it’s still cool to see them and have them nesting nearby!

      We had a pair in the Spring nesting that I was photographing for sometime. I missed the Fledging though. I went to Baby Girl’s for a few days and that’s when it fledged. 😂😭

  11. That’s a Hollywood photo if there ever was one, Deborah. Just add the signature scream and start running 😉

    I’ll check out the Flickr version later. I don’t know what WordPress has done, but I’ve seen lots of complaints.

  12. It says that I don’t have permission to view this photo of Flickr. Is the link correct? Never before I had any problem with your photos, they are always splendid. I’d be curious to see this photo on Flickr and compare. It does seem too light on here.

      1. No, it’s still the same. This is what I get:
        “403 This is not the page you’re looking for.
        It appears you don’t have permission to view this photo or video. Here are some other photos from CircadianReflections Photography instead.”

      2. Oh! Now I see the photo right here in the comment, thank you! It improves considerably by being able to zoom in more, that’s for sure. Other than that, I don’t see many changes (but you know that I’m no expert). 🙂 In any case, fascinating!

  13. Nice takeoff shot, Deborah! The river is lovely too. I’m no help with WP, I too have struggles with my photos looking different sometimes. I was on ‘chat’ with WP for almost an hour recently for another issue, ugh. (You can’t talk to them on the phone.) I did get that issue fixed but the changes has now caused a couple other issues I keep working around.

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