me in the piazza

I'm a writer, publishing both as SJ Rozan and, with Carlos Dews, as Sam Cabot. (I'm Sam, he's Cabot.) Here you can find links to my almost-daily blog posts, including the Saturday haiku I've been doing for years. BUT the blog itself has moved to my website. If you go on over there you can subscribe and you'll never miss a post. (Miss a post! A scary thought!) Also, I'll be teaching a writing workshop in Italy this summer -- come join us!
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Red in tooth and claw, and tail

All quiet on the Squirrely front, with the weather turned beautiful and renovations complete. Our hero has been zipping along the fence and bounding from branch to branch, most likely in search of something to eat. Or possibly, something soft to line the nest. Furniture shopping now that the construction work's done. He'd better watch his furry behind, though. Lying on the widest part of the fence is the remains of a half-eaten pigeon. The red-tailed hawk who lives around here, I'm not sure where, particularly likes that fence. I saw him land there last winter. He stomped around a little and then took off, looking annoyed that the snow was deeper than he'd thought. I've also seen him swoop down and grab something flying right there. He keeps his eye on the fence because the squirrels run along it and birds either land on it or have to lift up over it if they're flying low. I think he hangs around on my building's parapet, a nice high perch.

Holy Toledo! Here he is! As I sit here writing this, the hawk just swooped down and landed on the fence. Apparently he wasn't finished, something scared him off. He's back now, alternately checking around him, and tearing the pigeon's body apart. Feathers are flying everywhere. He may be a she, by the way; Mr. Sibley says you can't tell from the coloring, and both sexes establish territory. The good news is he/she is a juvenile; that, you can tell. That means some local red-tail nest was successful. The other good news is, he's eating a pigeon. I feel bad for the pigeon, but Hawkface here has to eat something, and we have pigeons to spare. I always worry about the migrating songbirds stopping off here for a rest.

Zip! Something just happened and Hawkface took off again. Well, from what I can see of what's left of the carcass, he was done anyway.

This has been your Downtown NYC Backyard Nature Report.

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