We’ve been keeping an eye out for the leucistic redtail in our neck of the woods. Our sightings are fleeting, but we’ve accumulated enough of them to construct a narrative at this point.
Usually the hawk is far away, and she has a knack for choosing unphotographable areas. We call her Marley, after the ghost in A Christmas Carol, because of her whiteness. We think of her as female because she is larger than the more typically colored redtail we see her with.
See what I mean about unphotographable areas? Cropped in, though, you can see that this is a pair of hawks.
Lately, we’ve been seeing Marley near, and sometimes perched on, a nest.
So it looks like her story goes something like this so far: Marley has paired up with a male, and she is getting ready for nesting season. We’re not positive yet that she’s actively using it, but if so this is by far the most unusual nest we know of. We look forward to observing whatever we’re able to see over the next few months without scaring her away from her maternal duties.