Urban hawk

One of several red-tailed hawks that make the green belt along Coleman Creek in Little Rock’s University District their home. This fellow was probably looking for lunch.

Red-tailed hawk in a tree.
KEEPING WATCH — Red-tailed hawk pauses in a sweet gum tree.
Hawk in tree.
LOOKING DOWN — Hawk checks out possible lunch int he brush below.

Behind the office

I’m blessed to work in an office surrounded by trees, despite being in the middle of the city. Coleman Creek runs behind the building, an oasis for wildlife well adapted to urban settings such as possums and raccoons. Part of the greenbelt includes a native persimmon tree. Despite the summer’s drought, the tree produced abundant fruit. Some of the ripened fruit drops naturally; but others come down complete with leaves and twiglets — probably knocked out of the tree by raiding raccoons.

There is some grassroots weather lore that goes along with persimmons. If you open the fruit and split the seed, the white shape that appears is a predictor of the severity of the coming winter. Check out Uncle Ray’s story by nephew and columnist Robert Seay here.

TART -- These unripe fruits re a favorite of raccoons and coyotes.
ONES THAT GOT AWAY -- Persimmons the raccoons missed.

The office backyard also has a few volunteer flowers. In spring, naturalized daffodils light up the leaf litter. In fall, surprise lilies, also known as naked ladies, also crop up. I was a little late in finding these ladies, but they still had a certain photographic lure.

SURPRISE -- No one was more surprised to find these surprise lilies behind the office than I.
PAST ITS PEAK -- Even as a lady of a certain age, this naked lady lily is still beautiful.