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Northern Harrier
Circus cyaneus
The Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus) is an efficient hunter over grassland and marsh habitats across much of North America. It breeds as far north as the Yukon and Alaska and winters well into northern South America. It can be a familiar sight as it courses back and forth across grasslands in its search for mice. The juvenile bird shown here was hunting over grassland and marsh edge at Bosque del Apache N.W.R., Socorro Co., New Mexico, in November, 2005. I spent two enjoyable afternoons watching this bird and trying to anticipate when he might come close enough to me to get some shots. All images on this page were shot of the same bird with a Canon EOS 1D Mark II and EF 600mm F/4 L IS lens and 1.4X extender. Note the rodent in its talons in one of the shots.
The next series of images of a Northern Harrier show an immature bird at Peach Point W.M.A., near Jones Creek in Brazoria Co., Texas. These images were taken from a vehicle window along the edge of a marsh where the harrier was foraging.
The next 7 shots of Northern Harrier were taken near Bitter Creek, Sweetwater Co., Wyoming, in August, 2008. In the 1st two shots shown here the female is carrying a mouse in its talons.
The female in the next few shots shown here was flying over a marsh as I stopped my truck nearby. The bird flew toward me vocalizing while several young immature birds perched nearby. A shot at right shows a young bird perched on a bush at the edge of the marsh, presumably near the site the bird was hatched. There were 3 juvenile birds in the area. After these shots I drove away so as not to disturb the adult further.,
The Northern Harrier in the next two shots was foraging over a field during a light rain at Bosque del Apache N.W.R., Socorro Co., New Mexico, in November, 2009.
Northern Harrier
Circus cyaneus
male
Anahuac N.W.R.,
Chambers Co., Texas
16 January 2017