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Mark Titus

Coop or Sharpy?

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 Saw this accipiter today in Bucks County, PA. It was flying decently high up and was mostly gliding. The way it was flying seemed like a cooper's to me, but it was pretty small.                                                   

Screenshot_20200318-164308Screenshot_20200318-115843Screenshot_20200318-164333Screenshot_20200318-164321

 

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The tail on this bird suggests Cooper's Hawk to me. I believe that a Sharp-Shinned Hawk would have a less rounded end.

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Posted (edited)

I agree with adult Cooper's. The very bulky appearance, large head, and long tail also rule out a Sharp-shinned.

Edited by akandula
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4 minutes ago, akandula said:

I agree with adult Cooper's. The very bulky appearance, large head, and long tail also rule out a Sharp-shinned.

Thanks! I was leaning towards cooper's just based on the flight pattern, but I always like to make sure.

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I like that you call this “gliding”.

It’s important not to confuse gliding and soaring. An accipiter with wings held like this in full soar (“reaching forward” at the “wrist”) would be a Sharpie. But since it’s gliding, not soaring, that does not apply.

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