I just got back in from airing out the dogs in the woods behind my house. We’d gotten about 20 yards deep in the woods (see snow pictures below for an idea of what I’m talking about) when 2 birds flew toward me – moved by the dogs I think – and perched between me and the dogs, who were a ways in front. At first, I thought they were crows (based on their size), but when they perched, I knew that wasn’t the case – typical raptor posture, and the one I had the best view of had his head low and out in front. The sky is overcast and the light is poor, so I didn’t pick up much more than silhouettes. They were calling to each other – one would krek and the other would reply: krek-krek (think of the sound of trees creaking in an otherwise quiet wood). They stayed perched for a heart-stopping 35 seconds or so, then flew off – under the canopy. I know what I think they are, but I’d appreciate a reality check/wishful thinking alert. I know a pair of what-I-hope-they-are nests about a half mile south of the house (though I can never find the current year’s nest). There was some logging last year where they normally nest – maybe they’ve been pushed towards me?
Later – I realize there’s not a lot of data to go on – it’s really the calling that I was curious about – whether that was enough to rule anything out or in.