Whilst walking on one of my South Philly Safaris with my son on a particularly cold and crisp morning I noticed a larger than normal bird out of the corner of my eye. One gets so used to seeing the squat form of a pigeon or the darting of a squirrel that it’s easy just to ignore them as background noise, but this form was standing tall, proud and large on a rooftop on South Street just West of Broad in South Philadelphia. I had to take notice as well as pictures.
Fortunately, I had a Canon PowerShot SX50 on me (thanks, Dan!) which has a terrific lens on it, and I was able to capture 4 or 5 decent shots of this beauty.
Being an urban dweller I knew I had a bird of prey, but I didn’t know what kind of bird of prey. Thankfully, good buddy and avid outdoors-man JT Liehr knew what it was and set me straight. It’s a Cooper’s Hawk or a Accipiter cooperii to your Latin speaking friends. I’ve noticed birds with considerable wingspans swooping around South Philly, but this is the best look I’ve had at one. There’s plenty of pigeons in this burg. I say Bon Appétit!
It sort of looks like this hawk was staring to and fro, posing majestically as if for a statue. Being that it’s eyes are on the sides of it’s head, I’m pretty sure it was staring right at me. He or she was not going to take any chances. That’s life in the big city.