Pale Male, a red-tailed hawk who introduced a contact of the wild to swanky Manhattan as he nested above Fifth Avenue for 3 a long time, has died.
Pale Male died late Tuesday after being discovered in poor health and grounded in Central Park, wildlife rehabilitator Bobby Horvath posted on Fb. The hawk was believed to be 33 years outdated.
Horvath posted that he picked Pale Male up and took him to his rehab group’s veterinarian, who did bloodwork and X-rays. The hawk later ate a small meal however remained weak and torpid, Horvath mentioned. “We hoped for any enchancment, however sadly it was not meant to be,” he mentioned.
Pale Male, so named due to his whitish plumage, was first noticed in Central Park as a juvenile in 1991 and commenced nesting on Fifth Avenue throughout from the park in 1993.
Chook lovers crowded contained in the park to look at as Pale Male and his succession of mates hatched and raised their younger every spring.
The birders have been outraged in 2004 when Pale Male’s nest with then-mate Lola was ripped from its ledge on the twelfth ground of a ritzy house constructing whose residents included actor Mary Tyler Moore and CNN anchor Paula Zahn. Moore publicly opposed the nest elimination.
The co-op board, which had voted to take away the nest as a hazard, rapidly reversed itself and restored a row of anti-pigeon spikes that the hawks had used to anchor their nest, and even added a brand new metallic “cradle” on the ledge. Pale Male and Lola rebuilt their nest.
As his legend grew, Pale Male was the topic of a 2009 documentary, “The Legend of Pale Male,” and at the very least three illustrated kids’s books.
Horvath wrote in his publish that Pale Male impressed chook lovers and photographers around the globe. Some took up chook pictures professionally, he wrote, however “most have been simply native residents or vacationers who simply wished a possibility to get a glimpse of this well-known hawk.”
David Barrett, who runs birding Twitter accounts together with Manhattan Chook Alert, mentioned that for a lot of Pale Male’s life “he was not solely the world’s most well-known red-tailed hawk, however he was most likely the world’s most well-known chook, one that individuals knew by identify.”
Barrett mentioned the hawk’s fame “reveals that even in an intensely city place like Manhattan, there are a lot of individuals who have a keenness for wildlife and really feel a connection to it.”
It’s troublesome to know with 100% certainty that the hawk that died Tuesday was Pale Male, since Pale Male was by no means banded.
Some observers started questioning round 2021 if Pale Male had died and been changed within the Fifth Avenue nest by one other hawk who resembled him.
No eggs have been noticed within the nest in latest breeding seasons, which Barrett mentioned factors towards the chance that the resident male hawk was in reality an aged Pale Male, not occupied with propagating.
Horvath mentioned he believes the hawk whose closing hours he witnessed Tuesday was Pale Male, a chook he has been following for 20 years.
“I’ve rescued infants of his that have been poisoned,” Horvath mentioned in an interview. “I’ve a historical past together with his household.”
If Pale Male did reside previous 30, his life was one of many longest ever recorded for a red-tailed hawk. He survived a number of mates together with Chocolate, Blue, Lola and Lima. His most up-to-date mate was Octavia.
He’s survived by an unknown variety of descendants.
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Pale Male, red-tailed hawk who nested above NYC’s Fifth Avenue for 30 years, dies at 33 (2023, Could 17)
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