Young Red-tailed Hawk -- oops, missed the schoolbus! Tempe Marsh, 1/12/12.
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And here's a bonus photo from late this afternoon...
A first-year White-crowned Sparrow (left) and a female House Finch at the backyard peanut feeder. I set out the peanuts for the woodpeckers, but it turns out almost all our regular winter birds like peanuts too. Good fuel for chilly nights.
Watching regularly, I grew to care for these birds
as if they were residents of my own backyard.
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I learned so much about birds in 2011.
Apart from my own explorations, I thank the Monday morning DBG birders and the fellow photogs and generous bird experts at Birding--Arizona and the Southwest FaceBook group for broadening my bird horizons and challenging my photography skills.
My newest bird-related fascination is photographing birds in urban settings. There are a few citified spots in Tempe that provide some reliable birdwatching. This was the highlight of yesterday's visit... a young Red-tailed Hawk, launching from atop a metal light fixture, seen between the blurry horizontal cables of a pedestrian railing.
Here's another shot of what I believe to be the same hawk, taken several weeks ago:
You can see more of my urban birds here on Flickr; it's a set in constant progress, with most recent photos first.
Last time, I mentioned my weekend discovery of the urban bird oasis at Tempe marsh. This is an Osprey, perched on a parking lot lamp alongside the overlook at the marsh. It was sitting there drying off and catching some rays. I spotted it on my way back to the car. A fun surprise!