Anne didn’t get the jigsaw puzzle finished last night, so I didn’t get to the park till after lunch today. The pair of buffleheads were there again, but even more shy than yesterday, so I didn’t even both with a new picture. There were three goldeneyes today, which makes for a fun scene.
There were at least three female common mergansers, and they even hopped up onto the ice. I’ve never seen a merganser walk before, so that was fun for me.
Finally, a raptor soared by and stopped in a tree over the far side of the river. At first I thought it was the merlin we’ve seen before, but once I got the pictures home, I could see that’s not right. Neither that Cooper’s hawk nor the sharp-shinned hawk has such a finely bared tail, and it is surely the the solid red of the red-tailed hawk we just saw. Here are my two best pictures. Can anyone identify this raptor? Maybe some red-tailed hawk variant, such as the “juvenile dark morph“