[Mnbird] When A Sighting Is Not A Sighting?

Gregg Severson rainerd at gmail.com
Thu Jun 4 10:25:34 CDT 2020


I would suggest that it could have been a Cooper's Hawk.  The white
undertail coverts are often flared out and can be seen from above/behind
the bird and give the impression of a white rump, especially in a quick
viewing.

Gregg Severson
Minneapolis

On Thu, Jun 4, 2020 at 9:07 AM Linda Whyte via Mnbird <
mnbird at lists.mnbird.net> wrote:

> Is there suitable habitat nearby? Wet meadow, etc? If so, why not a
> Harrier? If you had stormy weather recently, might winds not have directed
> it off-course, especially if easily available food was scarce enough during
> early migration to weaken it?
> Linda Whyte
>
> On Thu, Jun 4, 2020, 8:49 AM Brian and Cindy Drill via Mnbird <
> mnbird at lists.mnbird.net> wrote:
>
>> Good morning all.  This is a late post, but I spent most of 2 days trying
>> to figure out if 'I saw what I saw'.
>>
>> On Tuesday morning I was out to water plants.  As I walked to the front
>> of the house, thinking only about unwinding the hose and what I was about
>> to do, there was a sudden flurry of feather sounds coming from my right,
>> but no vocalization.  We are talking about the width of a single driveway
>> from me, at the front of my neighbors house.  As I turned quickly to find
>> the source of the activity, a fairly large bird was launching away from me
>> from somewhere around ground level.  It flew--not upwards, staying just
>> above car tops but below the tree line--across the street and down the
>> block and out of sight.
>>
>> In the few seconds I had to observe the bird (rear end view exclusively)
>> I noted an overall grey color, but with a distinct white patch above the
>> tail.  The flight was a bit different as well, a slower paced flap/soar
>> pattern.  My thoughts were that it was too large for a pigeon, it reminded
>> me of a hawk, yet I noticed some similarity to a gull in flight.  I have
>> seen plenty of Nighthawks, and this bird was larger without the mottled
>> coloring.
>>
>> Digging into my various bird books and online sources, it keeps coming
>> back that I may have seen an adult male Northern Harrier.  I can't find
>> another bird that has enough similar points to match up.  Thoughts?  Cindy
>> in North Mankato
>>
>>
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-- 
Gregg Severson
rainerd at gmail.com
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