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… no matter what they say.

I just saw a Red Tailed Hawk.

Close up.

Really close up.

I would like to say that the picture of the hawk at hand here was my picture. But it is not. You all know my luck at getting pictures of great birds here. Perhaps you will recall my recent encounter with a Pileated Woodpecker.

But the experience was breathtaking even without pictures.

I was coming back from a short trip to the local Wal-Mart and Dollar Store for cleaning supplies and other odds and ends.

Texas Linda and I were in her black Ford Truck and we were pulling up to my house here so I could unload the various finds of the day.

Suddenly from upper right to the lower right … no more than ten feet in front of us … swooped a magnificent large bird. She hit the brakes. Both of us said … in unison … “Whoa.”

Granted it was not the most eloquent response to such a situation, but it was definitely a whoa moment. No question.

I had never seen a bird like that. Neither had she. It almost looked like a Bald Eagle, which is common in these parts. Except it had a brown head … and a stunning red tail.

“It almost looked all red” said I.

“I think there is a Native American Chief named Red Hawk, so I’m thinking there are such things.” said she.

On getting out of the truck I, with trusty camera in hand, struck out to get a picture. But of course this is me we are talking about … and the key words here would be “struck out” … so there were no Hawks to be seen in the treetops. At least not by me.

Back to the house.

Enter the all-knowing Google. Which assured me … with many entries … that there was indeed such a bird. And it showed the picture I have included above.

Looking outside, I saw the bird once more. And ran to get a camera. And went out to get a picture.

No hawk.

Anywhere.

Back to the house.

Thinking that maybe it was not what I had thought it was I went to another site and played the sound of the Red Tailed Hawk.

It was at that point that I realized the sound on my computer was the same as the sound I was hearing out of my windows. That was a bit of a surreal stereo moment.

Back outside with the camera.

You know, I am a bit of a tree hugger and all, but even I am not going to go trudging up through the neighbors back yards up the mountain on the off-chance that the sound … which was becoming fainter by the moment … would result in a picture.

Back to the house.

I began to compose my Happy Holly blog entry of the day, which suddenly had become the sighting of a great bird. And on reading the Google entry I read some of the information about the Red Tailed Hawk.

Along with the following quote.

This is probably the most common hawk in North America.

No, no, no. If you see it less than ten feet away it is anything but common. No matter how many of them there are in North America.

They are magnificent.

And I got to see one today.

Even if I didn’t get a picture.

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