A Hawk

HawkIf you feed wild birds, you can also expect predators like this hawk to visit your backyard. Sharp-shinned Hawks and Cooper's Hawks readily come into urban areas looking for small birds.

When hawks appear, the birds at your feeders quickly disappear. Hawks are able to prey on the birds too slow or sick to escape. This is nature's way of keeping bird populations strong.

These beautiful predators usually stay in an area just a brief time so it is best to leave them alone. The smaller birds soon learn to watch for hawks. The hawks won't be able to catch the birds so they will move on in search of easier prey.

If you are concerned about hawks, try placing your feeders within 10 to 20 feet of dense shrubs or protective cover. The smaller birds will be able to fly into the bushes and the hawk won't be able to follow. You can also temporarily limit your bird feeding to times of day when hawks are not active, usually morning or evening hours.

For more information:

Landscape Plants for Wildlife (printable .pdf): This NebGuide lists some of the plants that benefit songbirds and other wildlife in Nebraska. It includes information about plants, their wildlife benefits, and where they grow best.

Backyard Wildlife: Planting for Habitat: Information on planning and planting for wildlife habitat in the backyard.

Feeding Birds


Guess it PhotoThis Can You Guess It?? photo appears in the November/December 2005 Nebline Newsletter.

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