One of the red tailed hawks that calls Highland Hospital home soars above the healthcare campus on Tuesday, June 28, 2022. Credit: Amir Aziz

A pair of red-tailed hawks have been living on Oakland’s Wilma Chan Highland Hospital Campus for several years now. Their soaring flights across the hospital’s central courtyard garden, and around the perimeter where they roost in treetops, have thrilled staff and patients. And last year, the pair raised chicks in a nest high up in a cedar tree.

Now, the Alameda Health System, which operates the hospital, has installed a wildlife webcam that allows anyone to watch the hawk’s nest in real-time.

The hospital made the announcement to coincide with Valentine’s Day.

“Red-tailed hawks are romantics who tend to mate in long-term, if not life-long, monogamous relationships,” the Alameda Health System noted in a press release.

Predatory bird expert and wildlife ecologist Dr. Peter Sharpe helped set up the camera. He said the hope is that Stormy and Sunny—named by hospital staff last year following a story in The Oaklandside—will raise their chicks this year in the nest.

“They are likely to begin nesting in March and typically lay up to four eggs that hatch in about 28 to 35 days,” said Sharpe. “Once they hatch, the chicks are cared for in the nest until they take their first flight at about 6 weeks of age.”

You can watch the nest here.

YouTube video

Before joining The Oaklandside as News Editor, Darwin BondGraham was a freelance investigative reporter covering police and prosecutorial misconduct. He has reported on gun violence for The Guardian and was a staff writer for the East Bay Express. He holds a doctorate in sociology from UC Santa Barbara and was the co-recipient of the George Polk Award for local reporting in 2017. He is also the co-author of The Riders Come Out at Night, a book examining the Oakland Police Department's history of corruption and reform.