Friday’s Feathered Friends- Cooper’s Hawk



For several weeks we’ve had a Cooper’s Hawk perching on a neighbor’s tree out back. With all the White-crown Sparrows, and Quail about I’m sure it’s hoping for a meal.

I’ve been enjoying seeing it perched there.

Cooper’s Hawk

Fun Facts-

    • Dashing through vegetation to catch birds is a dangerous lifestyle. In a study of more than 300 Cooper’s Hawk skeletons, 23 percent showed old, healed-over fractures in the bones of the chest, especially of the furcula, or wishbone.
    • A Cooper’s Hawk captures a bird with its feet and kills it by repeated squeezing. Falcons tend to kill their prey by biting it, but Cooper’s Hawks hold their catch away from the body until it dies. They’ve even been known to drown their prey, holding a bird underwater until it stopped moving.
    • Once thought averse to towns and cities, Cooper’s Hawks are now fairly common urban and suburban birds. Some studies show their numbers are actually higher in towns than in their natural habitat, forests. Cities provide plenty of Rock Pigeon and Mourning Dove prey. Though one study in Arizona found a downside to the high-dove diet: Cooper’s Hawk nestlings suffered from a parasitic disease they acquired from eating dove meat.
    • Life is tricky for male Cooper’s Hawks. As in most hawks, males are significantly smaller than their mates. The danger is that female Cooper’s Hawks specialize in eating medium-sized birds. Males tend to be submissive to females and to listen out for reassuring call notes the females make when they’re willing to be approached. Males build the nest, then provide nearly all the food to females and young over the next 90 days before the young fledge.
    • The oldest recorded Cooper’s Hawk was a male and at least 20 years, 4 months old. He was banded in California in 1986, and found in Washington in 2006.

Fun Facts gleaned from

Fuji X-T3| Fujinon 100-400mm| PS CC 24.1.0

more to come…

66 thoughts on “Friday’s Feathered Friends- Cooper’s Hawk

  1. Awesome to learn more about this bird and Deborah – I really appreciate the photos of our avian friends because I don’t get to see very many in our neighborhood – a lot of robins and small backyard birds

  2. What a gorgeous Hawk! We have one that likes to visit where I work 😊 Thank you for sharing these fun facts and your gorgeous photo! I learned a little more today!

        1. We do! There’s a pair that have been nesting on the golf course where we live for a few years that I’ve been photographing for a couple of them. They’re the most common hawk in the States.
          A Kite isn’t technically a Hawk it’s a Kite which is its own species, but they’re a predator so, I forget sometimes it’s not a hawk. The white-tailed kite is so pretty with big amber eyes.
          Here’s my favorite shot of one. I got that shot on my birthday that year too. What a gift!
          White-tailed Kite

  3. Aww such a beautiful photo ☺️🤗 I have a family of hawks that live in the trees by my yard and they’re huge!

    April ♡

      1. It truly is! I look forward to it all the time, haha. They love my yard because we’re out in the country and have lots of grass with bugs they like I guess, lol!

  4. I’ve learned to appreciate hawks as I’ve grown older and wiser. I didn’t know the oldest one lived 20 years, 4 months. That seems incredible to me.

  5. That’s a wonderful picture Deborah! I was kind of planning to reincarnate as a Cooper Hawk, but after your information about his relation with the stonger sex, I’m starting to have serious doubts. The Californian hawk however did seem to have broken a record. Tough dude. 🙂

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