Jun 101999
 

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Every fall and winter we get Cooper’s Hawks in the neighborhood.  The majority of them are first year birds.

First year birds can be identified by the teardrop shaped feathers on the chest.

This bird was sitting right next to the bird feeders and let me get less than 15′ away.

Cooper's Hawk juvenile

Cooper’s Hawk juvenile

The back of one of my visitors in the pecan tree.

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Occasionally one visits our water bowl.

Cooper's Hawk female juvenile

Cooper’s Hawk female juvenile

I caught the better end of it right after the stretch above.

Cooper's Hawk female juvenile tail

Cooper’s Hawk female juvenile tail

It is nice when you get a bird to sit on something that you can measure.  This Cooper’s is the longest bird I have recorded at slightly over 17″.

Cooper's Hawk female juvenile length

Cooper’s Hawk female juvenile length

And a profile shot……

Cooper's Hawk female juvenile profile

Cooper’s Hawk female juvenile profile

Here is a shot of an adult Cooper’s sitting on the roof of my neighbor across the street.  Note the full crop.

Cooper's Hawk adult

Cooper’s Hawk adult

I passed about 10′ from this Cooper’s Hawk juvenile in Kearney, AZ.  It was drinking water running along the curb.

Cooper's Hawk juvenile

Cooper’s Hawk juvenile

There is a sizable difference between the male and female.

The following came from an article from Stanford University:

For most species of birds, the male is larger than the female.  The general exceptions are shore birds and raptors.

The study indicated that the faster the prey of the raptor, the larger the size difference between the sexes.

Cooper’s prey on birds, thus very fast, thus a bigger size difference between male and female.

The female picks smaller males due to safety concerns, thus over time, the size difference gets exaggerated.

Cooper's Hawk male and female juveniles

Cooper’s Hawk male and female juveniles

Cooper's Hawk in flight

Cooper’s Hawk in flight

 Cooper’s Hawks and Sharp-shinned Hawks look very much the same although Cooper’s are a larger bird.

The biggest female Sharp-shinned is equal in length to the smallest male Cooper’s, but as you can see below, length isn’t everything.

There are other differences too….

Cooper's Hawk vs Sharp-shinned Hawk

Cooper’s Hawk vs Sharp-shinned Hawk

Cooper’s left, Sharp-shinned right, both are juveniles and they are not the same size.

Notice the feet (and legs) on the SSHA are notoriously skinny.

  The chest pattern on the SSHA is bolder than the COHA.

  The length of the COHA tail feathers are much more graduated (outer shorter than inner).

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

This causes the SSHA tail to look square and a COHA more of a circle.

On occasion a Cooper’s can get an infection called bumblefoot.  Caused by an infected lesion it can spread causing possible loss of toes or even life.  I have seen two cases of this in the field.

Cooper's Hawk bumble foot

Cooper’s Hawk bumble foot

Cooper's Hawk bumble foot

Cooper’s Hawk bumble foot

Sometimes raptors injure their talons.  As long as the root is not affected, it should regrow to its normal size and use.

Cooper's Hawk with talon problem

Cooper’s Hawk with talon problem

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Juvenile Cooper's Hawk

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Juvenile Cooper's Hawk

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Cooper’s Hawk Nictitating Membrane

Cooper's Hawk nictitating membrane

Cooper’s Hawk nictitating membrane

Cooper’s Hawk Nictitating Membrane

Cooper's Hawk nictitating membrane

Cooper’s Hawk nictitating membrane

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Juvenile Cooper's Hawk

Juvenile Cooper’s Hawk

Another visitor

Cooper's Hawk

Cooper’s Hawk

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

Cooper's Hawk COHA

Cooper’s Hawk COHA

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  One Response to “Cooper’s Hawk COHA”

  1. Great site: Thank you!

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