Cooper’s hawk and Yellow-bellied sapsucker

A few novelties are showing up.  A Cooper’s hawk soared above Chalo and Hannia’s cabin in San Diego for several minutes last week. This is the first of this common US species that I have seen here.  Another soaring hawk at the same location was probably a dark morph Short-tailed hawk.  It was a typical, chunky buteo with many bands visible on the tail.  The plumage was almost all dark both above and below.  I don’t know what else it might be.

An immature Yellow-bellied sapsucker in Costa Rica, courtesy of Richard Garrigues

An immature Yellow-bellied sapsucker in Costa Rica, courtesy of Richard Garrigues

A rarer find was a single immature Yellow-bellied sapsucker that clearly showed the big white wedge on its side for just a few seconds before disappearing from a cypress tree trunk on the grounds of Yaneth and Janet’s cabin in San Antonio.  This species is very uncommon and seen only in migration in Costa Rica.  I saw two individuals in my San Antonio garden some years back.  Again, they were immatures.  Richard Garrigues’ photo above, though partly blurred, shows the white in the wing that is so characteristic of this species.

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