by Marilyn and Keith Davis

"Wet and Bedraggled Pigeon is on the Menu - Hopefully"

Cooper's Hawk

coopers hawk        Salt Lake Valley could easily be called Pigeonville, because in the month of March, wherever we traveled across the Valley, we were astounded by the number of Pigeons we saw in the air, resting on wires, and on the ground. One evening, while traveling in a rain downpour, we saw Pigeons everywhere trying to weather the storm. There were rows of shiny Pigeon eyes peering out from underneath the freeway bridges. Under the eves of the homes, Pigeons were crowded into every crook and cranny to escape the cold, snowy rain. Pigeons found shelter under large advertisement signs; others found a place beside a warm streetlight. Every Pigeon found some kind of a shelter.

        We were happy for a vehicle with a heater and windshield wipers that worked. In our moving shelter we were oblivious to the wind splashing sheets of icy water across our windshield - until we came to the realization that we had to exit our vehicle and run to a market. We stopped and got out. Luckily for us, the wind began to die down and immediately the sun popped through to give one of those famous Utah sunsets. A Cooper’s Hawk, highlighted with the golden sunset, flew over our heads, still hunting his last meal for the day. This cold, rainy day, with the birds under shelter, made for poor pickings and a hungry Cooper’s Hawk. When Pigeons hide out, they are hard to find and hard to hunt.

        We will remember our trip to the Salt Lake Valley because of the sheets of rain, a spectacular sunset, the Cooper’s Hawk flying silhouetted against the bright evening sky, and seeing the great numbers of Pigeons undercover. Keith Davis is the artist of the Cooper’s Hawk. If you have questions about southern Utah’s Cooper’s Hawks, call 435 673-0996.

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