Tuesday, September 23, 2014     Volume: 29, Issue: 8
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New Times / Letter To The Editor

The following article was posted on January 24th, 2013, in the New Times - Volume 27, Issue 26 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from New Times [newtimesslo.com] - Volume 27, Issue 26

Hawks can be cute

San Luis Obispo

Daniel Brainerd

So I’m lying out doors, in the grass. “I” being a homeless person. So I see a lot of stuff. On this particular occasion, I am lying on my back staring up at the sky. It has been butt-ass cold for a month, yet the days eventually warm up to perfection. This city I live in is nice. It is hard to stop homeless from wanting to inhabit.

My point is that I am watching two red tail hawks. One is a female. One is a male. It is very sweet when you are not degreed and you can spot it right off. They were in love.

What they were doing was courtship. They circled around each other in slow gentle circles. Sometimes coming very close. After a minute or two they would separate, both heading in opposite directions. One heading SE. One heading NW.

I am watching very intently and as I am watching I learn that the female has the upper hand. He flinches and turns around first. She does as well, but he was in a pickle. So they meet more or less in the middle and they start all over again with the slow seductive circles, and yes they eventually depart in opposite directions. The distance of separation is far greater this time, and I am feeling a little concerned. But sure enough he folded again. Two things I watched her do as he was playing catch up. Once I caught her looking behind her. She veered slightly off course. The second was that she always had on her airbrakes. As he gained speed and got close enough, he too put on his brakes.

I lost them behind the hill; all the same it was very cute.