Several weeks after I first observed these two downtown, highrise hawks (one lightly colored, the other dark), I was able to arrange a visit to the office behind the window where the hawks are typically seen.
As luck would have it, the light-color hawk was returning to the ledge just as I arrived.
Unfortunately, I was not prepared to get photographs of the bird’s interesting, but brief, interactions with its own reflection in the mirrored glass. For just a few moments after landing, this bird spread its wings wide, and grabbed and pecked its reflection in the glass with its talons and beak.
The hawk quickly settled down, though, and moved to its favorite position in the corner of the window. This prevented me from photographing the condition of the ledge at that location, but fortunately, I was able to get a good look at it, and I can report that there is nothing unusual about the location whatsoever. The stone surface is intact, flat, and sloped. There was no nest or eggs in the location, and it was clear that the ledge was generally unsuitable as a nesting location.
The ledge is located just outside the 34th floor of the KPMG building in downtown Dallas. The office manager on that floor tells me that the two hawks have been regular visitors to the ledge for at least the last 6 years. She explained that they usually arrive in April, and stay until sometime in June or July.
According to the office manager, the light-colored hawk spends the majority of its time on the ledge, while the other, darker colored, hawk brings assorted nesting materials, such as twigs, wire, and paper, all of which eventually fall off the side of the ledge.
Unfortunately, the second hawk did not make an appearance during this photography session. At one point, we believed we saw the darker bird coming into the downtown area, but as the bird drew nearer and flew by the building, we realized we were seeing a Turkey Vulture.
So what is going on with these two downtown hawks? Their behavior certainly strikes me as odd, but I do not have the experience to say for sure.
One possibility that we tossed around, is that this is a failed attempt at nesting, and for some reason the birds are driven to try and see it through nonetheless.