“Whether wheeling over a swamp forest or whistling plaintively from a riverine park, a Red-shouldered Hawk is typically a sign of tall woods and water.” (All About Birds-Red-Shouldered Hawk). This handsome Hawk was definitely in his element.
He was perched high up in a tree on the edge of the forest surrounding the beautiful marshy ponds of the Orlando Wetlands. He had a commanding view – overlooking this 1200+ acre wetlands ecosystem. Great vantage point for spotting a tasty breakfast.
Orlando Wetlands “is a man-made wetland designed to provide advanced treatment for reclaimed water from the City of Orlando and other local cities.” It’s also a perfect spot for hiking, wildlife viewing, and birding!!The Red-Shouldered Hawk‘s diet consists of small amphibians, reptiles, and snakes, as well as small mammals such as mice, voles, chipmunks, and even small birds.After thoroughly surveying the ponds and open trails for the longest time, the Hawk suddenly turned around and flew back into the woods. Apparently he was more in the mood for forest creatures than pond life on this particular morning.☺️
For more on how this ecosystem operates, this beautifully filmed 6-7 minute video details the remarkable workings of these invaluable constructed wetlands: Orlando Wetlands Cleans Our Water.