Oh how I love these types of birds. I previously shared my top shots of bald eagles and owls, now we look at some images of other types of eagles, hawks and falcons. Raptors are extraordinary creatures, ferocious predators but also quite beautiful and widely varied. From the tiny American kestrel to the monstrous golden eagle, all hold a special fascination for me and are quite often the focus of my images. Here’s a look back at my favorite captures of these creatures of the sky from my 2020 photo year.
Boy, these guys are so danged cool! As I was just beginning to prep my end of year photo projects this past weekend, I happened across bunches that I hadn’t shared, including this one.
Taken at a photo shoot with Nature’s Educators almost a year ago, this was one of a pair of these awesome raptors that serve as ambassadors for the group.
I have never seen a Harris’s hawk in the wild so photographing them was a treat. That plumage and those eyes are just stunning – plus these guys hunt in packs, just like wolves! How cool is that?
That is some seriously intense focus in this raptor’s eyes, eh?
The yellow around the eyes and the yellow gape really coupled with that intense stare draw attention to its face. Throw in those red-ish and dark browns of the plumage and this is one beautiful bird.
This captive hawk was one of two I had the opportunity to photograph at a raptor photo shoot with Nature’s Educators back in October.
This type of hawk rarely comes to northern Colorado so it was a great opportunity to see something I wouldn’t be able to otherwise.
What a stunning raptor. This past weekend I took part in a photo shoot event allowing me to get some way cool captures of raptors, including ones like this that don’t normally come to northern Colorado.
The vast majority of my pics come from truly wild wildlife but every now and then I enjoy taking part in an event with a controlled environment like this. It gives the opportunity to get up close and personal with the animals and is a good time to experiment and refine photographic skills.
Best of all, the funds for these events support a great non-profit, Nature’s Educators.
This particularly Harris’s hawk was one of a pair that put on a fantastic flight demonstration. Both are actually hunting birds, used by their owner in the ancient art of falconry.
Harris’s hawks are typically found in the southwestern United States. Most notably, they are very social and in fact hunt in packs – just like wolves! That has to scare a lot of rabbits!
A cool image I haven’t shared before from a raptor photo shoot I did last year. It was a great opportunity to get up close and personal with some birds and get shots that you normally would not be able to get. In this case, it was even better by being a hawk that I had never seen in person before as they don’t live in Colorado.
Harris’s Hawks were previously known as bay-winged hawks or dusky hawks but John James Audubon gave it its present name in honor of his friend and supporter Edward Harris.
These birds are primarily found in arid climates like the desert Southwest and Mexico. They are unusual in that they are very social, living and hunting cooperatively with each other in packs.
A complete sequence of images showing this cool hawk as it takes flight. This was one raptor I was really looking forward to seeing and photographing at an event this past weekend.
This particular one is named Rufio and is a year and a half old falconry bird. Still in training, he was not overly cooperative only giving a couple of chances at flight captures. In between he would stubbornly perch in the nearby trees requiring his falconer to spend a good bit of time coaxing it down.
Nevertheless, I was happy to be able to capture this sequence.
Harris’s Hawks were previously known as bay-winged hawks or dusky hawks but John James Audubon gave it its present name in honor of his friend and supporter Edward Harris. These birds are primarily found in arid climates like the desert Southwest and Mexico. They are unusual in that they are very social, living and hunting cooperatively with each other in packs.
Scroll down to view the complete sequence.