This Video of a Red-Tailed Hawk Hovering in the Wind is Mesmerizing
Check out this fascinating clip of a red-tailed hawk hovering in the wind as it looks for prey below. The video was taken by Bill Bryant in Golden, Colorado, and was selected as a video award winner at the 2021 Audubon Photography Awards. Bill adds:
Over several days I watched a pair of Red-tails taking advantage of the strong early summer winds streaming down from the Rockies, hovering in midair while scanning the foothills for mice and ground squirrels. This one floated almost level with my lens. His head stayed still while his body moved, his wings and tail steadying him and his dangling feet acting as ballast. [source]
Red-tailed Hawks most often hunt from a raised perch, as flying low enough to scan for prey usually requires more flapping and more energy. At times, however, wind conditions are such that they can hang motionless, hardly moving their wings, resting in the air as they study the ground below.