There are so many Swainson’s Hawks in northern Utah right now, I see them perched, on their nests, hovering over fields and soaring on the thermals after the sun warms up the air. Yesterday morning I was able to photograph two Swainson’s Hawks that were perched close together next to a well traveled road.
Trucks zoomed by and these hawks just ignored them and only followed the vehicles with their eyes. There was a cool breeze blowing at the time and the Swainson’s Hawks may have been just enjoying the warmth of the sun on their feathers. I’m not sure but I am glad they were cooperative birds because that allowed me to photograph them for a few minutes.
Swainson’s Hawks prefer wide open habitat including grasslands, prairies, agricultural fields and I will also see them perched on cliff faces surveying the grasslands below. Lately all I have to do once I am outside of the city is look up and I can see these beautiful raptors on the wing.
This handsome Swainson’s Hawk’s plumage confuses me a little, I know it is a light morph Swainson’s and I believe it is a sub-adult because its plumage isn’t what I expect see in an adult nor is it the plumage of a first Spring bird. It might be a second Spring bird?
However old this Swainson’s Hawk is I think it is a handsome raptor and I am glad it tolerated being photographed from across the road.
As much as I love photographing birds I also love seeing the country they live in and fly over. I took the two landscape images a few days ago because I loved the combination of sky, clouds and land formations. The country side here in northern Utah is always a visual delight to my eyes.
So are the birds.
Life is good.