Arrived at Niobrara SP yesterday mid-afternoon (Mon. 11/6) and joined other birders scanning the open edge along the waterway and campground for Bill Flack's incredible Harris's Hawk find. After striking out there we tried to recreate Ross Silcock's success at re-finding the hawk and went to the north end of the campground RV pads. Almost immediately after we started walking down the hill towards the water, the hawk flushed and was first seen airborne over a small Russian Olive tree in the vegetated space in the middle of the canal. It flew from the east edge of the campground northwards along the hillside next to the waterway and disappeared out of view just beyond a hill with some precarious old concrete steps at the top. Our fleeting glimpse of it flying away delivered what was arguably the most marginal view of a lifer we've ever had but still revealed that oh so distinctive tail pattern and the rufous shoulder patches on the wings. We trekked as far in that direction as we were able but couldn't see where it had gone.
Returned to the campground and after thawing out, did a final pass of that area. Just before dusk a hawk appeared circling once again over the north end of the RV pads and headed into the campground. Saw it land momentarily in a tree and then zip through the open central area of the campground flashing a bold white tail patch through the trees and sending Eurasian Collared Doves flying into pine trees and hither thither calling repeatedly. Couldn't be 100% percent of the i.d. on that second encounter like we were the first time we saw it but strongly suspect it was again the Harris's.
also on eBird
-John Carlini & Shari Schwartz, from Lincoln/visiting Niobrara SP