Golden Eagle, with breakfast, of a road kill deer on Bobcat Pass, NM. Throwback Thursday or flashback Friday depending on when you see my post. I made this image in 2012. I actually used another shot of this bird in my book, which is being reprinted in Canada as we speak. I’m very excited and looking forward to when the Museum of New Mexico Press re-issues it. I thought I would share this image for the birds impressive, regal posture and downright powerful nature. Oh! … and it’s willingness to acknowledge my presence and it’s ability to stay focussed on the meal at hand. Thanks for looking. G
Osprey brood Chama Valley, northern New Mexico. We made a trip to check on the Osprey family on the road to Chama, N.M. This is mom endeavoring to get the kids out of the house. Dad was a hundred yards away sans fish. Mom flew down to a fresh mown hay filed and returned clutching the hay in her talons. I can hear the conversation now. “You aren’t getting anymore fish unless you get it for yourselves, so this hay is all you’re getting if you stay here.” Seriously, it was brilliant to watch as the young ones could see no response from dad and they also had a clear view of moms trips to and from to the hay field. Thanks for looking. G
Chicks. Two very curious juvenile Red-tailed Hawks on the Nest in the San Luis Valley, Colorado. I’ve been watching this nest and another for some time. The other nest appeared to be recently abandoned but these two chicks at this nest site are thriving very well. By July/August they will be practicing flying lessons. I’ll keep an eye on them and fill you in on their progress. Thanks for looking. G
Nesting Red-tailed Hawk in the San Luis Valley, Colorado. It’s that time of year again and all the usual nest locations are occupied, except one. The pair that raised two chicks in that particular nest last year, are now nesting in another tree close by. It’s a privilege getting to observe these families of raptors in their environment. Not wanting to disturb this bird we made a few images and moved on. Thanks for looking. G
Hawk tree, Red-tailed Hawk in Arroyo Hondo, NM. Our resident Red-tailed, frequents three locations. A high cottonwood with a view of the east and west valleys. This tree, with a more specific view of the meadows, supplemented with an old snag on the opposing, west side of the highway with grand coverage of the marsh lands and horse pastures. If these are the only places, then it has got the valley covered. I’m sure it knows more than I do. Thanks for looking. G
Kestrel territory on the plateau. That same American Kestrel from April 1, 2019. This is its territory, it owns it. The pleasure is all mine to observe and wonder at the beauty of this bird. This photo is the appreciation of the moment I was able to participate in. Thanks for looking. G
American Kestrel, highway hunting during the last snow storm. This little creature didn’t let the weather deter it. The weather would be to its advantage and the weather probably didn’t even come into account. This American Kestrel’s nature comes from the same place as the snow. Thanks for looking. G
Red-Tailed Hawk aloft over Cerro New Mexico. On the way to a quick photo shoot near Ute Mountain, I caught this beautiful raptor out the car window. I’m convinced it knows my maroon 4 Runner as it has a knack for taking off, from it’s perch, when it sees me long before I pull over. In this case it flew in my direction right past my open window. Thanks for looking. G
Bald Eagle, with a backdrop of the Sangre De Cristo Mountains covered in snow. With such a commanding view it’s no wonder we’ve seen this raptor, numerous times, at this location. It’s also a great place to stop and admire the view for ourselves. If we’re fortunate we may see this bird again next week on a return trip to the area. Thanks for looking. G
Rough-legged Hawk, yesterday at the Monte Vista Wild Life Refuge, southern Colorado. Was it ever cold yesterday. It didn’t seem to bother this raptor. Apparently it was also unperturbed by us. The bird sat on this post long after we left. It was a battle of wits. Once it lifted off and alighted on the next power pole, stretched it’s wings, settled back in, rotating it’s head, ignoring us just a few feet below in the snow. Thoroughly bored with us. We felt the vibe. Yesterdays count was a Golden Eagle, a Bald Eagle, and Swainson’s Hawk, a Northern Harrier, a Red-tailed Hawk, two of these Rough-legged Hawk beauties and a Coyote. Later on the drive home a large flock of Canada Geese, heading south, wheeled over the highway and head east towards the mountains. Despite the cold it was a gorgeous sunny day. I love my job. Join me on a winter photo tour! As always thanks for looking. G
Bald Eagles, on the Rio Grande in Pilar, New Mexico. Well… my heart always skips a beat when driving through the canyon, south of Pilar, and we spot a pair of eagles in a dead juniper. These two were on the west bank of the river. It was very special to see so many cars pull over and people get out and sit on the guardrail to watch in awe. Time out of one’s day well spent. Here’s another shot of a Bald Eagle in the same vicinity a few years ago. Thanks for looking. G
Osprey, Rio Costilla Park, northern NM. I’ve seen this bird here a couple of times over the last few weeks. Today it played tag with us on the Rio Costilla. At one point we lost sight of it. As we drove west, scrutinizing the cliffs, the high sun suddenly cast this raptors shadow onto the sun roof, across the hood and down the road ahead of us. The game was back on. When we caught sight of it again it had alighted on a snag, just off camera in this shot. Soon thereafter, something other than us grabbed it’s attention, which was when I made this image. Thank you so much for your attention. G
Monarch of the hay bales, San Luis Valley. I firmly believe this is a Swainson’s Hawk, as it wasn’t sporting a red tail in the the next few shots after it lifted off and soared to the west. These bales were a field of wheat a week ago. This raptor didn’t waste any time ensconcing itself on the highest vantage point in it’s dominion of the farms and fields in the San Luis Valley. Thanks for looking. G
Juvenile Swainson’s Hawk, San Luis Valley Colorado. This young bird had a lot to say, one of many raptors on a photo tour in southern Colorado and northern New Mexico. Hearing a hawk screaming is powerful and resonates long after the echo’s of the screeching fades. It stirs up the senses like something known and recognizable from our ancient past. It’s that way for me. Thanks for looking. G
Red-Tailed Hawk, Arroyo Hondo, NM. Every now and then I like to revisit Poet Laureate Ted Hughes Poem, “Hawk Roosting” You can read it below. Thanks for looking. G
I sit in the top of the wood, my eyes closed.
Inaction, no falsifying dream
Between my hooked head and hooked feet:
Or in sleep rehearse perfect kills and eat.
The convenience of the high trees!
The air’s buoyancy and the sun’s ray
Are of advantage to me;
And the earth’s face upward for my inspection.
My feet are locked upon the rough bark.
It took the whole of Creation
To produce my foot, my each feather:
Now I hold Creation in my foot
Or fly up, and revolve it all slowly –
I kill where I please because it is all mine.
There is no sophistry in my body:
My manners are tearing off heads –
The allotment of death.
For the one path of my flight is direct
Through the bones of the living.
No arguments assert my right:
The sun is behind me.
Nothing has changed since I began.
My eye has permitted no change.
I am going to keep things like this.
— Ted Hughes