A pair of Red-shouldered Hawks . . . or not.

Red-shouldered Hawks are quite common year-round here in southeast Florida. The distinctive reddish patch on the shoulder is not always readily visible from a distance, but is quite easily seen in both of these birds.This time of year is when courting and nest building begins. Red-shouldered Hawks form pairs and return to the same nesting area […]

Red-shouldered Hawk in the evening light

My husband spotted this beautiful Red-shouldered Hawk enjoying the waning moments of sunlight at the Refuge the other night.The Hawk seemed quite undisturbed by our presence as he gazed down at us from his perch.We enjoyed every moment, as the setting sun continued to cast that wonderful golden glow. Before long, the sun was too low […]

A recent morning in the Everglades

Gray Catbirds, like this handsome guy perched above, were everywhere. They are unique songbirds in that their song actually sounds more like a mewing cat – really helps in identifying them!  I love this very apt description of them from All About Birds : “Catbirds are secretive but energetic, hopping and fluttering from branch to branch . . .”We […]

Checking out the neighborhood

I spotted this Red-Shouldered Hawk surveying his surroundings from a perch on a bare tree this morning. Red-Shouldered Hawks are monogamous, solitary nesters, and return to the same nesting spot year after year, sometimes generation after generation.  The Hawk’s average life span is less than 5 years, but “the oldest-known Red-shouldered hawk was at least 22 years, 5 months […]

What’s in a name? ~ Part 2

Humans have a curious need to classify the elements of the natural world around us, and to assign names to these wonders.  I wrote last week about my experiences with learning to identify birds, and how important this also seems to be to passersby who often ask, “Excuse me, but do you know which bird […]

The Days of Joy

This week marks the Days of Joy on the Jewish calendar~!  We note this special time period between the Days of Awe, which include Rosh HaShana through Yom Kippur, and the beginning of the week-long holiday of Sukkot, when we commemorate the travels of our ancestors in the wilderness, and the building of the sanctuary, […]