Cherish is my favorite word, and I cherish the ability of turning the routine into a beautiful moment.
Nature creates in me, a spiritual and meditative time to bring peace, harmony and balance, into an otherwise ordinary day~
Mary Howell Cromer

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Three Eyas Are Growing Fast and Strong~

The adult male has just delivered a Vole, or Shrew to the hen to feed her 3 young eyas~

The hen takes a break to preen, sun and watch for any quick catches that she can grab to feed herself and her young.  She now soars once a day with her mate, but not to worry, for she always can see her nest, even from a great distance.  She hunts within eyes view of the nest, but no longer stays, other than to deliver food, and feed her growing chicks~

The two eyas above are the youngest, and most probably the very youngest is the one on the far right.  You can see the older eyas just to the left side of the nest~

In the images above, the older chick in just on the forefront of the nest and is having trouble hanging on.  The hen stops feeding long enough to watch and make sure that the young one, could get turned around and find a safer location, see images below~

After spending many hours a day for 12 weeks at a time, over many years, being in the presence of this adult hen, I feel that she knows me.  She knows that I mean her, nor the nest any harm.  She seems to trust me, as I walk around the nest tree 6 times a day, to make sure there have been no tumbles.  She has yet to warn me this entire season.  She really does not need to, for I respect that this is a wild bird, that could if she saw fit, attack me and hurt me badly.  She allows me time to get close to her, for some nice photography sessions and when she gets bored with me, she simply flies away.;)~

Whenever she looks directly at me, as she is doing in the top left hand image, I always look either down, or away, never making eye contact directly with her.  I walk carefully and slowly, whenever I am near her, or the nest site...never any quick movements made~

It is amazing how quickly all of this takes place.  In less than 3 weeks now, all 3 will have fledged, hopefully, if things continue forward as nicely, as these past weeks have gone.  I am still ready for any tumbles, but I am certainly hoping that none comes down this season, for it makes for a lot of stress for the hen, the young one in the basket, oh and me~

The older eyas shown here, already has a lot of the beautiful feather colouring coming in atop it's head and exercises it's wings, and hops all about the nest, making me very nervous, and yet all of this is very necessary~

White splashes of bird droppings, are always a good sign that all three eyas are functioning well.  This is also the tell tale sign to any wondering wildlife that eyas are present on the nest, and the reason that after watching Raccoons take young ones, that I place the protective aluminum pending around the nest tree and surrounding trees~

I am also linking with World Bird Wednesday, please visit other birding photographers and enthusiasts from around the world at:


  1. Glad to hear the little ones are doing well! I hope they all make it to adulthood! Your photos are fantastic as always! It's so nice to have that kind of access to these birds.

  2. glad they are still doing well, and mama is starting to take some breaks out of the nest. very cute!

  3. Really amazing photography! Such a beautiful and interesting post!

  4. Very nice serie Mary, must be nice to see them grow like you do ;)

  5. A great series of photos and its so good to be able to document the growth of the young birds in the nest.

  6. Mary, always a joy to visit your blog... great photography and good to know the little ones are doing well.Thanks for sharing!Have a great day.


  7. A very nice set of images! The little ones are so cute :)

  8. Absolutely stunning photos and so interesting to read your comments explaining them - it's a wonderful on-going story and thank you so much for sharing it.

  9. Mary they are still so cute, great shots!

  10. I always read first for the update and then watch the slideshow!! Great job.Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

  11. Hi there - great set of pictures - being able to watch these birds grow for real would be such a treat.

    Sorry to say but we don’t have Pileated Woodpeckers in Australia - or any other type of woodpecker for that matter. The pictures were taken in Ohio when I was doing a teacher exchange.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Australia

  12. You are just so dedicated to those hawks Mary. Its great to read your observations and read how much you know what is going on up in that tree when most of us would be unable to appreciate all the details. Now I'm not sure who is more devoted to the task in hand - you or the mother hawk LOL.

  13. Great series of the Hawk family! It's amazing how fast they go from fluffballs to a youngster ready to try out its wings!

  14. lovely to follow them as they grow. It is a privilige I think.

  15. such an ammount of hard work into this post - very very well done. The images really tell a story.

    wonderful post
    and much appreciated

  16. Lovely pictures you have taken, every one. Brilliant photos.

  17. I truly envy the relationship you have with the Red-shouldered Hawks Mary. They are beautiful and the eyas are so cute. Thank you for sharing this wonderful adventure.

  18. Brilliant reportage!
    What a pleasure to follow them through your eyes!
    Very nice blog Mary!


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