24 November 2020

Posts Tagged ‘turkey vulture’


Saturday, July 11th, 2020
Juvie (left) and adult Red-tailed Hawks, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 11 July 2020.
Juvie (left) and adult Red-tailed Hawks.

Few sounds in nature thrill me like the scream of a Red-tailed Hawk. Maybe it’s the fact that I haven’t heard it often (not counting in movies or on TV, where the sound is commonly—hilariously—used to represent vultures or eagles). Or maybe because it’s so unique, unmistakable, and ethereal: it’s not very loud, but it carries.

Since moving to Utah nearly a year ago, I’ve heard the cries of a redtails in the mountains three or four times—possibly as many times as I did in my two score years in Maine. [Aside: the Red-tailed Hawk is arguably the commonest hawk in North America.] Today, I got that thrill five or six times in a matter of a few minutes.

Over the past few days, I’ve spotted a young redtail down near the trailhead, hanging out on utility poles. It’s been quite vocal, but its voice is that of a young bird: a fast series of high-pitched squeals—nothing at all like the ethereal voice of an adult.

Today I saw juvie and adult together atop a pole. The former just sat there, squealing occasionally; the latter repeatedly released its inimitable cry.

“Flyyy!” it seemed to say. “Flyyy!”

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:15 a.m., I hiked some 1,200 feet up a mountain.

1. Black-headed Grosbeak
2. Mourning Dove
3. Lazuli Bunting
4. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
5. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay (v)
6. Black-chinned Hummingbird
7. House Finch**
8. Spotted Towhee
9. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
10. American Robin*
11. Red-tailed Hawk
12. Rock Pigeon*
13. Black-billed Magpie*
14. Broad-tailed Hummingbird*
15. Warbling Vireo
16. Golden Eagle
17. Turkey Vulture
18. Northern Flicker (v)
19. Song Sparrow (v)


20. Eurasian Collared Dove
21. California Quail


Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

**Voice only elsewhere


Saturday, July 4th, 2020
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 04 July 2020.
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.

Did the ridge circuit with dog this morning, a three-and-a-half mile hike up Coyote Canyon (so-called) to a summit above the terminus of the Pipeline Trail. Warm, sunny, breezy, dry.

Not nearly as many individual birds as yesterday, nor as many species. But all around it was a lovely Independence Day hike for both Captain Jack and me.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:30 a.m., I hiked 1,200 feet or so up a mountain.

1. Mourning Dove
2. Black-capped Chickadee
3. House Finch*
4. Lazuli Bunting
5. Black-headed Grosbeak (v)
6. Black-chinned Hummingbird*
7. American Robin*
8. Spotted Towhee
9. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
10. Pine Siskin (v)
11. Lesser Goldfinch (v)
12. Cooper’s Hawk (v)
13. Warbling Vireo (v)
14. Chipping Sparrow (v)
15. Virginia’s Warbler (v)
16. Turkey Vulture
17. Northern Flicker (v)


18. Black-billed Magpie
19. Eurasian Collared Dove
20. European Starling


Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere

A Warm One

Sunday, June 21st, 2020
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher, East Millcreek, Salt Lake City, Utah, 21 June 2020.
Blue-gray Gnatcatcher.

Aaand, right on schedule—a toasty warm hike today. It might not have been so warm had Jack and I not slept late, but man and dog had places to go, so we went those places, as always.

The heat might’ve daunted the birds some—that and the job of keeping everyone safe and hidden—because I didn’t encounter many species. Still da bunch of buntings and towhees (as always, I have come to realize). And plenty of finches and hummingbirds and gnatcatchers.

I’m kinda taking a liking to gnatcatchers.

Grandeur Peak Area List
Beginning at 8:45 a.m., I hiked a few hundred feet up a mountain.

1. American Robin** (v)
2. Song Sparrow** (v)
3. House Finch*
4. Woodhouse’s Scrub-jay
5. Lazuli Bunting
6. Black-chinned hummingbird
7. Black-headed Grosbeak
8. Blue-gray Gnatcatcher
9. Pine Siskin (v)
10. Spotted Towhee
11. Cooper’s Hawk
12. Black-capped Chickadee (v)
13. Black-billed Magpie (v)
14. Warbling Vireo (v)
15. Black-throated Gray Warbler
16. Turkey Vulture


17. Rock Pigeon
18. Eurasian Collared Dove
19. Lesser Goldfinch (v)
20. California Quail


Rock Squirrel

(v) Voice only
*Also elsewhere
**Voice only elsewhere

Bird Report is a (sometimes intermittent) record of the birds I encounter while hiking, see while driving, or spy outside my window. —Brian Willson

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