I spent about an hour last month photographing a single male American kestrel, also known as a sparrow hawk. When he first arrived at the blind at Hackberry Flat Wildlife Management Area in southwest Oklahoma, he was wet.
I think he had probably gone after prey and wound up getting damp.
He spent a lot of time preening, and slowly his feathers began to dry out.
The light was gorgeous, even if he wasn’t.
He knew I was there, but felt safe enough, except when a harrier flew over. Then he retreated to a more distant shrub.
Then he’d fly back closer to the blind and continue preening.
This back-and-forth continued several times. I’m glad I stayed so long, because when I was returning to the car, I met the birders who told me about the short-eared owls, which I featured in a post a few days ago.
Although Hackberry Flat is known for its large population of waterfowl, they were all too far away for good photos. It was the birds of prey that made it a super dooper great trip for me!
Photos and text copyrighted by Cindy McIntyre
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