Strange Tri- Hybrids

From reader Roberto Buonfante comes this “natural” domestic pair and their young, in Italy: a Buteo X Buteo (Redtail jamaicensis x Ferruginous regalis) mated to a Harris (Parabuteo–!– unicinctus) and their first of several successful clutches.

Seems they might make great hare hawks! Roberto writes:

“… the Harris [and] the red/ ferr. were placed in the same aviary to moult because they were tolerant of each other. When the female started to carry material he obviously understood and gave them the chance. The day he candled the eggs he was in shock. We are talking about natural captive breeding of Buteo mix crossed with Parabuteo. I know the breeding was repeated 2 times in the same season, another oddity considering they were raising their young.

“He had a hard time to sell them and like always once gone everybody wanted them.
.. Do not remember if he had both sexes, I would assume yes considering there were several chicks.

“It seems that this specimens have taken all the best features from their relatives, tame as harris, aggressive and big footed like red tail, large size from ferruginous.”



Progress?

As several readers who communicate outside of the blog know, the redheaded falcon has been extremely wild and difficult. I had decided to send him back to the breeder and was feeding him to repletion every night.

But, as his weight rose, against all expectations he got tamer and tamer. He is now butter- fat, tolerating Ataika 100%, and still coming swiftly to the fist, at least indoors. So we will try a bit longer.

Just for Fun

A photo taken on top of the hill in Shutesbury Mass, ca 1974, of me with my redtail tiercel Cinnamon (still one of the best gamehawks I ever had and oddly, like one of the more recent best birds, stolen after years with me), and a friend who is holding my intact rather huge albino male ferret JL. Quite a team when cottontails took to groundhog burrows; we once took eight rabbits with them in one day (in an industrial wasteland). My only excuse for such greed is that there must have been fifty left, and that in those days game was my only meat, even more so than today. I am now looking for that pic.

Thanks to constant reader Lane Batot for making me think about ferrets again.

Oh and: please keep hair remarks to a bearable minimum. Please.

Update: I have found a photo with rabbits– I’ll scan and post later.

Hackee sack anyone?


I’ve been working hard all week, either on the computer or on the ranch, so this morning I played hooky and went for a three-hour photo excursion to some of my favorite places in our county. This sandhill crane was busy throwing a chunk of cow manure in the air, hitting it with his head and beak, playing with it like it was a hackee sack. I saw it as I was driving by, and I swung back around to try to get a photo before it quit. One photo was all I got, but mercy what a fun photo it is. Anyone out there still doubt that animals play?

A small segment of Sublette County, Wyoming has one of the largest nesting concentrations of long-billed curlew of anywhere in the world. They love flood-irrigated hay meadows, digging through cattle dung for bugs.

I saw more Swainsons today than any other raptor.


This bird seemed to be about to burst its chest as it cheerily sang the song of spring. The Meadowlark is Wyoming’s state bird, as it is for several other states.

As I headed home, it was starting to snow a little, and a badger appeared alongside the road momentarily before disappearing into a burrow.