Description from GoodReads: In the companion to Coyote Moon, follow a red-tailed hawk in his hunt to feed his family in this picture book, from Maria Gianferrari (Coyote Moon) and illustrated by Brian Floca. Complete with back matter containing more information about how hawks hunt, nest, and raise families, as well as further sources.
Early morning and a ruffle of feathers,
A shadow gliding through the backyard.
High above your house Father Hawk circles, sharp eyes searching for prey. From the front porch, you watch.
He dives after chipmunks, crows, sparrows, squirrels.
The sun sets low in the sky. What’s for dinner?
Thanks Maria for stopping by Kid Lit Frenzy and sharing more about Hawks with us.
Top Five Ways for Kids to Research Hawks!!
As a self-proclaimed bird nerd, I am delighted to be writing this post on ways kids can research hawks for Kid Lit Frenzy!
Thanks for having me here, Alyson!
5. Read books on hawks and birds of prey!
You can start with a classic field guides like Peterson’s Hawks of North America, named after naturalist Roger Tory Peterson. Birds of prey are also known as “raptors.”
4. Watch movies!
The Legend of Pale Male is a film about New York City’s most famous resident red-tailed hawk, Pale Male and his mate, Lola, who nested on an posh apartment building on 5th Avenue. See the trailer here.
Check out Looking Skyward: A Passion for Hawk Watching, a movie of why people hawk-watch. It also shares some major places for watching hawks migrate.
3. Field research!
Grab your binoculars! If you live in North America, a red-tailed hawk could be your neighbor! They are North America’s most common hawk. The area where hawks live is called their “range.”
Red-tailed hawks live in all kinds of habitats: deserts, roadsides scrublands, fields and pastures, city and suburban parks, woodlands and forest and even tropical rainforests.
They love to perch hunt along highways, so look for them on light poles, telephone wires, roadside trees, and even highway signs.
Here’s a photo I took when I lived near Boston, Massachusetts:
This hawk was perched in an area where a bunch of major highways intersect.
2. Visit a local wildlife or raptor rehabilitation center!
Raptors who have been injured are treated, and if their injuries heal, they are released back into the wild. Those whose injuries will not allow them to survive in the wild become full-time residents in wildlife rehab centers and serve as “education ambassadors.” Wildlife vets and rehabbers often visit schools or libraries for educational programming events with these birds to talk about raptor biology, how they care for the birds, and their role in the wild.
Here is a directory of wildlife rehabilitation centers throughout the US: http://wildliferehabinfo.org/ContactList_MnPg.htm
Here’s a red-tailed hawk ambassador named Trouble from SOAR (Save Our Avian Resources), a raptor rehabilitation, education and research organization in Iowa
If you live in the northeast, you could also visit Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in Pennsylvania.
If you can’t visit, you can learn a ton about hawks and especially raptor migration on their website. See RaptorPedia.
1. Watch them live on webcams!!
Without a doubt, the best way to research hawks is via Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s All About Birds website on their live webcams!!! You can directly observe Cornell red-tailed mates, Big Red and her new mate, Arthur as they prepare the nest and incubate the eggs.
This year, Big Red laid a clutch of three eggs:
You can watch the chicks “pip” or hatch, and see a newly hatched chick:
You can watch the nestlings grow
And see the kind of prey they eat.
Watch it all live here!! You can scroll back to the very beginning.
And of course, you can also learn a bit about more about hawks by reading, Hawk Rising, while you marvel at Brian Floca’s stunning illustrations.
Roaring Brook Press is graciously offering a copy of Hawk Rising to one lucky US resident reader of Kid Lit Frenzy. (See the Rafflecopter below)
Thanks again, Alyson!
About the author:
Maria Gianferrari's favorite pastime is searching for perching red-tailed hawks while driving down the highway. When she's not driving, she loves watching birdcams. Her favorite feathered stars are Cornell hawk Big Red and her late mate, Ezra, who together raised fifteen chicks since they began nesting in 2012. Maria is also the author of Hello Goodbye Dog and Coyote Moon, both published by Roaring Brook Press as well as the Penny & Jelly Books (HMH), Officer Katz & Houndini (Aladdin), Terrific Tongues (Boyds Mills Press) and the forthcoming Operation Rescue Dog (Little Bee). She lives in Virginia with her scientist husband, artist daughter, and rescue dog, Becca. Visit her at mariagianferrari.com, on Facebook or Instagram.
Enter to win a copy of Hawk Rising (must be 13 years old and have a US mailing address).
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