Summer lost its hold over that last week. We had some hot days, but mornings were cooler, and a front on Friday brought more dry, cool air, so this morning is in the low sixties, and the promise of more deep blue skies; maybe filled with mare's tails, like yesterday.
I walked outside to feel the morning. The front had lost its punch, so the wind backing to the east is filling with moisture, and the crispness is waning. Still, it was a pleasant relief from the summer mornings, with temperatures pushing eighty degrees, and a humidity near 100 percent.
The blue jays were fussing in the distance; their sharp caws a warning to their own, and any other species that knows they do so to alert, or move a predator to other prey. I looked, and listened, as they moved my way.
The focus of their attention caught my eye, as it landed at the top of large white oak. The sunlight had not quite reached the top of the trees, so its plumage was dull in the increasing light.
It was a hawk; large, but not huge, so it took a few moments to determine the species. The plumage was familiar, but the solid tail didn't look the right color. Before the sun could find its perch, it flew away, as the blue jays landed on adjoining branches; calling for support and fussing.
I think it was it was a red tailed hawk; maybe a juvenile, or the light didn't accentuate the color of its tail. It was hard to tell in the dim light, but the solid tail, and plumage pattern was the same as a red tailed hawk.
I knew it was around, since I'd seen it in the evening, as it flew over the top of the trees. The blue jays always announced its presence, but its quick passage never allowed a closer look.
I'd found traces of its hunts. Strange clumps of dove feathers would be in the yard, but unlike that of a cat, there was no blood, or pieces of the dove, Finding its prey in flight, or perched in the top of a tree, the feathers were lost as the talons grasped the prey, and the quick acceleration removed clusters of feathers.
With the retreat of their enemy, the blue jays stopped their raucous complaint, and settled back into their morning routine. The rest of the birds did the same, and only the sounds of an awakening morning were left.
I stood for a moment longer, and went on my own hunt for a cup of coffee; my thoughts on the rich taste, and the start of a beautiful day. I think I'll sit on the back porch, and wait for the sun to rise above the trees.