Bird #301 — Harris’s Hawk

parabuteo (from para, near, and buteo, hawk) unicinctus (from unus, one, and cinctus, girdled)

Wednesday, April 4, 1984 — 7:00 pm, just a few minutes after the sun dipped below the horizon

Saguaro National Monument, Arizona — West Unit

My mom, my wife and I drove to the West Unit of Saguaro.

We drove around a bit, looking at the saguaros, then sat in a picnic shelter on a small rise and took in the sights and smells of a desert sunset.

As we were driving slowly toward the park entrance, I spotted a Harris’s Hawk perched on top of a saguaro in a thick stand.  I set up my scope inside the van and got a good look.  The hawk was scraggly looking, like it was molting, and it had almost no feathers on its head.  It sat looking around for a few minute, then flew off out of sight.

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