The last few days I have noticed a solitary red tailed hawk sitting in the tree directly east of the window where I work at my computer. It flies to the same branch to perch facing the morning sun each day. After ten or fifteen minutes it takes wing to hunt my pasture and the surrounding area. Because it chooses the same branch, I know it is one of the mated pair that has hunted and nested here for several years.
It is sad to see the hawk patiently waiting for its mate. I wonder if the missing raptor was illegally shot by a farmer somewhere in the United States as it made its annual migration, or if it was killed by eating a rodent full of poison. I wonder if it was killed by a speeding truck along a highway when it fell out of the sky toward its prey. Did it break a wing flying into an electric wire, or a wind turbine, or by some other action or artifact of human beings? Did it succumb to a disease or infirmity brought on by pollution? I have seen many dead and dying red tailed hawks, all victims of our human selfish domination of the earth.
Somehow we ignore the fact that we are made of the same biology as all of the creatures who live on this planet. We forget they were here first. We forget that if they cannot survive here, neither can we.
I hope the missing hawk died of old age, that its time on the earth was full. I hope the survivor finds a new companion and nests once again in the bend of Spirit Creek, though as a human being I hardly deserve such a blessing.
The hawks together November 12, 2009.
Most Marvelous Post Script November 2, 2011
It is a happy day whenever the world proves me to be far too pessimistic and sad! Look who arrived yesterday!
Taken November 1, 2011: