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Old and New

old and newFriends, these are flight feathers from a redtail hawk at the border between old feathers and new feathers, the old has signs of wear on the edges and the new have a smooth edge.  This is a sight that few of us get to see, unless we frequent Hawk Ridge and then study higher magnifications of the wings.  The older feathers are browner and might even be juvenal feathers left over when the bird had its first molt.  The very top feather shows a notch that is present on the outer primary flight feathers of the wing, so this is the left wing and we are looking at the underside of the wing.  I am busy studying the molts and feathers to see what i can learn, lots to learn. til Tomorrow MJ

The Rufous Redtail

Friends, this beautiful copper-colored redtail (right below) is a rufous-phase Redtail Hawk and it is estimated that the rufous phase makes up about 5% of the total population of Redtail Hawks.  So this is a rather special hawk and his light eyes mean he is a juvenile hawk as the eyes get darker as redtails mature.  You can see the difference in the chest color by comparing the rufous (right) to the more traditional redtail (left) in the images below.

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