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      What bird is this?     
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JimmyJustice
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08/12/2020 05:44PM  
The bride just sent me this pix of what is sitting on our deck railing. What say you birders? For reference, the railing is 4" wide.

 
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MReid
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08/12/2020 06:09PM  
Cooper's or Sharp-shinned hawk--I never really distinguish--size and tail bars.
 
08/12/2020 07:25PM  
Looks like a Coopers Hawk looking for a snack. They eat other birds.
 
snakecharmer
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08/12/2020 09:02PM  
I agree. Coopers. We've had one hanging around the backyard. Also likes to perch on the deck railing.
 
08/12/2020 10:17PM  
I watched one pick off a mourning dove from my deck feeder. I was standing 15 ft away watching the dove through the window when the hawk got him. Spectacular to see.
 
WhiteWolf
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08/13/2020 03:01AM  
Agree with the others. Been a few years but a pair had a nest across the street on the blockI live on. When ever they would return or leave the nest - the entire community of "normal" birds - cardinals,blue jays, robins etc would go bat crazy noisy. Have noticed the "normal" birds do the same thing in the Spring when barred owls are nesting in a large silver maple imby.
 
Freddy
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08/13/2020 07:43AM  

Always difficult to identify but I think the square tail suggests a Sharp-shinned hawk.
 
JimmyJustice
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08/13/2020 08:09AM  
Thanks everyone. Id did a little book learning on the Cooper's Hawk last night. I can see why he/she has an interest in our yard. We have a couple of doves, several robins, the occasional cardinal and some other types of flying things. A proverbial smorgasbord. Hopefully it has no interest in bread-loafed sized dogs.

With the possibility of it being a Sharped-Shinned Hawk, I have more reading to do. This homework is exciting as it will replace the monotony of watching the news.

 
inspector13
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08/13/2020 08:36AM  

Wow. That one seems to have indicating characteristics of both. Yes it is holding its tail feathers notched like Sharp-Shinned Hawks do, but does anyone know whether they can also raise their head feathers into a crest like a Cooper’s?

 
scotttimm
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08/13/2020 10:17AM  
Close members of the same family, tough ID. I was taught "sharp shinned-square tail". When I was a science teacher in PA, we used to take kids to Hawk Mountain to watch the raptors fly overhead, and the size was what made it easiest to distinguish. To me, this looks like a Coop. Crest clearly present (I don't think Sharpies do that), shorter, thicker legs, prominent white band at tip, I wouldn't call that tail a "notch", seems more rounded to me. Size seems pretty big, sharpies are fairly small...try to imagine if a blue jay and crow were perched there also...sharpies are closer to a blue jay and have long, thin legs.
Here's a good site that outlines differences:
Sharpie vs Coop
 
Mnbowyer
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08/13/2020 11:31AM  
Cooper's Hawk.
 
Freddy
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08/13/2020 01:05PM  

Yes! The more I look and the more that is posted, I believe this is in fact a Cooper's hawk. Not the first time I have misidentified a bird and probably won't be the last.
 
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