Raptors in Mission Trails

February 12, 2021  •  3 Comments


Red Tail perched 
Mission Trails Regional Park, San Diego, California

There was rain threatening as Buddy and I left the house but we went anyway.  There might be some nice fog and the rain will probably be a light drizzle or heavy mist.  It remained a heavy mist until we were well into the Grasslands section and then it came down with a bit more authority so we turned for home.  While we were there though I found some nice looking raptors, what the in-house expert has identified as a red tail hawk and a kite.  From where I stood the kite looked similar to a gull but there would be no reason for a gull to be hovering above a meadow so I figured it was a raptor I hadn't seen before. I spotted it flapping its wings in a hover (called kiting) while on the hunt for some small prey.  Twice it floated (not dived which I would expect) down to the grass in an attempt to grab a morsel. I really couldn't see whether it was successful or not. 

Kite Kiting
Mission Trails Regional Park, San Diego, California


The rains kicked up around then so we headed back to the car and on the way spotted a crow taking in the view from a log. 


Rain Crow
Mission Trails Regional Park, San Diego, California

Other than the crow the images are highly cropped. Even at 300mm on my D800 I couldn't get very close to the birds but I like the way they came out. 


Comments

Todd Henson(non-registered)
I have a soft spot for birds so I enjoyed these. :-) I still have a hard time identifying many of the raptors out there. There are several species of hawk I keep getting confused. And I sometimes know when I see a non-hawk raptor, like a kite or falcon, but I usually can't identify it in the field. Sometimes I even have a hard time identifying raptors from photos back home. I need to spend more time studying them. Beautiful birds, thanks for sharing these, Joe.
Monte Stevens(non-registered)
I also love to watch raptors, one of my favorite channels in nature. I sometimes think about taking video of them. I'm planning on purchasing a 70-300mm lens in a couple of months for my Fujifilm camera. I had the Nikon 80-400mm zoom lens when I shot Nikon and loved that lens. At the present time my longest focal length is 80mm. A little difficult to capture images of birds with that length. Looks like s good time for you and Buddy.
Gary(non-registered)
Love the hawks. Once in a while we'll see a pair of red-tailed hawks surveying our neighborhood from high up in the neighbor's trees. Pretty sure it's the squirrels and the rabbits that attract them.
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