A hungry hawk feasting on pigeons at the entrance of a Syracuse area bank has been upsetting the staff the past couple of weeks, a bank official said.

Joseph Mathlin, from the M &T Bank’s property management department at the bank’s DeWitt office, reached out to NYup.com recently seeking guidance on how to deal with a Cooper’s hawk “that’s using the entrance of our building as its cafeteria.”

Mathlin said he first was notified about the hawk feeding on a downed bird on the sidewalk at the building’s entrance on Feb. 7. There have been two other incidents since, he said.

“Just looking for a little guidance as to how we can encourage the bird to choose another location to feast,” he said. “Needless to say, the staff at the branch are terrified, and the mess that is usually left behind also doesn’t go over well.”

He said the bank recently put up a large fake owl near the entrance to scare the hawk away.

Jay McGowan from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, said he doubts the fake owl will be effective in frightening the hawk, but added it could possibly reduce the numbers of pigeons around the entrance. “It won’t hurt,” he said.

He advised that the bank should just let nature take its course and eventually the hawk will find another place to perch and feed.

An adult Cooper’s hawk is a medium-sized raptor, about the size of a crow. A unique trait of this bird is that it captures its prey with its feet and kills it by repeatedly squeezing it.


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