Cooper’s Hawks

April 9, 2014

A pair of Cooper’s hawks taking a break from mating, feeding and nest-building activities to pose for the camera. The last good Cooper’s hawk image I made was seven years ago so I was thrilled to get this shot after receiving a tip from a new acquaintance, Gary Reed. My circle of “spotters” has grown over the years to the point where I receive almost weekly reports of wildlife activity worthy of a photograph. I couldn’t be more appreciative of the assistance.

If you are wondering, the male is on the right and the female is on the left. Also, I was able to quickly rule out sharp-shinned hawks, a similar species, as these birds were very vociferous, revealing the distinct call of a Cooper’s Hawk.

The second image is a vivid demonstration of the daily carnage that occurs near a Cooper’s nest. Wait until these predators start feeding their babies!


The Cooper’s hawk, in my opinion, is the most impressive aviator among Missouri’s raptors. I’ve watched them rotate into a vertical position to cut through the narrowest of tree branches, reminiscent of the Death Star Scene in the original Star Wars movie. They never seem to fly in a casual manner; they are always intense and exciting to watch.

More images to follow, when and if I get another look at these gray-clad beauties.

Thanks for looking,

Danny Brown

Email:  NatureFrames@Rocketmail.Com



13 comments on “Cooper’s Hawks”

  1. Wonderful image and text…as usual 😀

  2. We have a pair of Coopers building a nest in a tree near our house in U City and watch them frequently. Last year I saw one take a bird out of mid-air. Thanks for this close-up look!

    • Hi Vivia — I’m hoping to get some screech owl images from one of your neighbors in University City. Still waiting for the action to start. Enjoy your Cooper’s hawks.

  3. These hawks are gorgeous, Danny. I love both pictures you posted. So glad I was able to watch them with you last weekend.

  4. What a great find. Seven years is a long time in between.

  5. Beautiful birds and what a treat to have your photos to allow us into a moment of their world. Love your description of their flight patterns!

  6. It is so neet to see these Coopers Hawks up close, and doing what comes naturally to them, feeding on another bird.Nature can be cruel, and exciting, all in an inseant. I remember when they were in my back yard last spring, an doing just what you captured on film. Awesome shoot Danny. Thanks for sharing


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