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Bryant Park Hawks

Galan In Flight With NYPL

On Monday I saw one of the Bryant Park hawks for the first time, a seven year old Harris Hawk named Petunia. The trained hawks are being used in an experimental effort to frighten away congregating pigeons. During the day you can usually spot one of the trainers releasing a hawk into the plank trees or the vendors' rooftops, and calling it back to him through a crowd of foraging pigeons.

I had my camera with me Wednesday and took a number of pictures of a Harris hawk named Galan as he worked the park, and I'm posting these to my photoblog in a brief departure from my ongoing series of photos from Hawai‘i.

Galan and Trainer

I meant to post this New York Times article about the hawks, which Leslie sent me two weeks ago, but I dawdled and it's no longer available for free. It's a good one, though, and I recommend it to those who are willing to track it down or pay for it. Thanks, Leslie!


I also saw the hawk, I believe on Monday; I walked to the park, headed west by the carrousel, turned around to return along the border of the grass, pushed impatiently past a couple of suits who had stopped to gawk at something, looked up... and saw what they were gawking at: a hawk swooping towards me and over my right shoulder. I turned in time to see it land on the leather-gloved hand of a falconer, presumably the guy in your second photo. Quite an experience, and I'm glad you got the pictures!

On Wednesday, last week my 6 year old daughter chased after the hawk handler and asked if she could see the bird up close. It was beautiful I think her name[the hawk] was Mocha. It's the man in the photo he was very friendly to my 6 year old and informative.

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