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Old 10-06-2007, 06:38 PM   #1
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This is just TOO CUTE

"Hood", the Kanye West of hawks.

If you're ever feeling down and need a little cheering up....

This is taken from the site

Maybe you're heard of Pale Male, the celebrated red-tailed hawk in NYC, maybe not. But here's a bit of background.

Central Park is huge attraction for migratory birds, and it has also a thriving ecosystem of widlife. (It's listed as one of the top 10 Birdwatching sites in the country, along with such places as Yellowstone.) There are several thriving birdwatching societies connected to the Natural History Museum, which is coveniently right next to the Park. One day in 1992 people from one of them made a startling discovery.

A very pale-colored red-tailed hawk was showing signs of staying to live in the Park, finding a mate and building a nest with her on the cornice of one of the wankiest high-rises in the City (across from Woody's Allen's digs and not too far from Bono's pad, as it turns out.) Red-tailed hawks are known to temporarily perch on buildings etc, in migration season but before Pale Male, as they dubbed him, a red-tailed hawk (or any other raptor) making a nest and living on a building, rasing chiecks in a throughly urban setting, was virtually unheard of.

The bird of prey quickly became something of a celebrity in the years that followed. With his quirky behavior, both in daring to try to make a living in the "dog eat dog" (or should I say "hawk eat crow") world of Manhattan, as well as his swanky choice of a nest, a fanatical following of birdwatchers formed a Pale Male Hawkwatchers club and every day someone would be hanging out in the Park and following Pale Male and his mate's every move. Pale Male became famous. And he still is. Stories about the trials and tribulations of the birds in NYC has made national news several times, including one notorious incident from a couple years back where the management of the building tried to move the nest, there was an international outcry and several celebrities got into the fray, including a CNN news anchor and Mary Tyler Moore. The whole drama made national headlines for several days. He was the subject of a PBS TV special, there were children's books published about him, and finally a best-seller published in 1998, "Red Tails In Love: A True Wildlife Drama In Central Park" (forgot the author, but it is well worth a read, as well as giving the story of the first years of the Pale Male phenom, it also is an excellent nature-lover's guide to Central Park, giving such info as lists of edible wild fruits and vegetables there, lists of bird and animal life, and where to find it all; as well as a guide on what to look for during the peak migration seasons of April-May and Sept-October. So if you're a bird lover, now is one of the great times of the year to check out the Park.

Pale Male must be one of the only animals to have his own website, (started in 2002) and it's great. The guy who runs the site is a FANTASTIC nature photographer. The site is updated daily, not only with pictures and information about Pale Male, his "lady"Lola, and the veritable dynasty of hawks that he has fathered, ("Hood" is one of the grandkids, and you can tell; he has Pale Male's white chest and his mom Charlotte's brown head), but other animals in the Park too, and you can tell from reading the site that people who discovered the story of the hawks have had their eyes opened to the wider world as well.

I suggest going through the Archives on the site as well. The photos from September are really good; his ones of butterflies are gorgeous. There's a recent one of a baby raccoon that's one of my faves. If you're looking for a good wallpaper here's a good place to start!

Anyway, I go to this site every couple of days just to see how my favorite little guy is faring, and his family too. If you were a Barbaro fan you can understand the impulse. This stuff never fails to lift me up---Pale Male's world is an oasis of tranquillity in a changing world.

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Old 10-10-2007, 09:21 PM   #2
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That's really cute. Nice pictures, thanks for posting.

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Old 10-15-2007, 03:12 AM   #3
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Thanks for this!

There is an Eagle living in my suburbia, I hope it is not someones pet
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