While resetting my stepping stones, I stopped to take a rest on my chair along the creek. Across the way the sparrows were coming back and forth to the birdhouse with pieces of material to build a nest in the box. I noticed a feather lying in the leaves on the ground on the other side. About that time, I saw the male sparrow fly down and pick it up in its beak. He flew to the birdhouse and proceeded to drag it into the nest. He got two-thirds in the hole, but could not get the rest into the nest. Next thing I knew he pushed it back out and left it float back to the ground.
I went over and picked up the feather and found that it was a hawk feather. The hawks come and visit the gas-line clearing from time to time. It is a beautiful specimen as you can see. I thought it was interesting to see the fuzzy down at the base of the shaft. That is most likely the way they stay warm and insulated in cold weather. I decided to save it for my collection of odds and ends!
Hawk feather too big
for brown sparrow’s bird house nest
Nature’s gift to me
iPhone Photos: Dwight L. Roth