Guinea Pig Zero

By gpzero


My neighborhood has the special honor of being on the migratory route of Eastern North America for raptors. There are two routes, and the other is along the Rocky Mountains. Here in the East, every single migrating raptor who travels between South America and Canada passes by Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, which is about 90 minutes' drive North of the city.

This is about the fifth hawk I've seen this fall. The most common are red-tailed hawks, at least concerning the birds who stop for a short rest and a look-see from our trees.

A friend pointed this one out to me, and I was delighted because I needed a blip and had my camera ready. They don't stay long and although I've gotten pictures of these visitors a few times I still have not captured one in flight. I don't recall any hawks stopping on a building like this. Usually they sit in a tree, and not at the very top. I'm guessing that this is a red-tailed hawk because we see them regularly. It was something like 600 feet from me and this was the best I could do.

The bird is sitting at the top of the bell tower at Hickman Temple, 50th & Baltimore, West Philadelphia. It was originally St. Paul's Presbiterian Church, built within a few years prior to 1908, but I forgot to check the corner stone. I went inside a few months ago on a Sunday to see if anything unusual caught my eye, but nothing did. The church is fully active in the community, judging from all the people coming in and out every day.

One of these days I should conspire to climb to this same perch and inpect the intersection as this bird has. I'm sure it would be pleasing to see such a familiar sight from a new angle.

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