Herdsman visitors Angela Streitel and Sean Nolan captured fantastic photos of a juvenille Brown Goshawk Accipiter fasciatus (which means banded captor), spotted on the Olive Seymour Boardwalk.
These are commonly seen around the wooded parts of Herdsman Lake. At the moment, you’ll see their characteristic flap and glide near the treed areas searching for unsuspecting prey. In days gone past they were also called Goose Hawks (later shortened to today’s name Goshawk) or Chicken Hawks, as they were known to take a liking to poultry. Nyungars call them Karkany, which I can only guess might be an onomatopoeia of the ‘kikiki’ call they make.
Brown Goshawks nest around September and after a month of incubation, there is a further month before fledging. Brown Goshawks will be around Herdsman until around about autumn when they migrate north to head for warmer areas and return back south in early spring.
The photos show a juvenile on the path still dripping (it has recently fledged but wasn’t a very strong flier yet and fell into the lake) , and watching a Tiger Snake on the boardwalk and trying to decide if it will be its next meal or just an interesting thing to watch. Goshawks are known for landing and remaining still so that everything calms down, before they pounce.
Photos courtesy of Angela Streitel (1) and Sean Nolan (2,3)