Our new backyard is up against a “canyon”. That sounds exotic, but there is a road at the bottom. Never the less, we have a steep hillside covered in brush behind our back fence. There are abundant rodents and snakes. There is also an agave spire just behind our fence that I can see from my office window. A lot of birds stop over on it.
Red Shoulder Hawk
I’ve seen this (or several) red shoulder hawks on a almost daily basis. Of all the birds they seem the least bothered by me walking out with my camera and will stay even with me outside.
If I make a little noise they even respond by glaring at me. I’m guessing these hawks are watching for the abundant mice that frequent our compost pile near the agave spire.
Most days they are facing the canyon, not the backyard. Occasionally one will perch facing the into our yard.
Male American Kestrel
I’ve only seen an American kestrel once. They are tiny but much more colorful than the other hawks. The kestrel was not OK with me being outside with the camera. I only got 1 short burst peaking around the porch roof before he flew off.
Cooper’s hawks are another frequent visitor. They, like the kestrel, seem to be skittish. I’ve only been able to get outside and into a position to get a picture once. Most times, the hawk flies off about the time I (quietly) open the back door. The back door is hidden and pretty quiet, but clearly the cooper’s hawk are on high alert for noise.