Hawk


The light phase Swainson's Hawk was photographed at Freezout Lake Wildlife Management Area in Montana

The light phase Swainson’s Hawk was photographed at Freezout Lake Wildlife Management Area in Montana

Select this link to see photos or a slideshow of the Swainson’s Hawk

This Swainson’s Hawk is a light phase brown above with a tan breast band and white face, and a narrow gray-banded rounded tail often ending in white. It has a range of northwestern North America to northern Mexico, mostly western. It has a habitat of plains, range, and open hills, sparse trees. Usually soars over the grassland, or by perching and scanning the ground.

This Red-Shouldered Hawk was photographed in Baxter Springs, Kansas while hunting Starlings-they ganged up on him and gave chase.

This Red-Shouldered Hawk was photographed in Baxter Springs, Kansas while hunting Starlings-they ganged up on him and gave chase.

Select this link to see photos or a slideshow of the Red Shouldered Hawk

The Red-Shouldered Hawk has a dark patched upper, heavy dark bands on both sides of the tail, rufous shoulders, and pale robin-red underparts. This is a forest buteo recognized by its ample tail and broad wings. It has a range from southeastern Canada, the eastern half of the United States, and California. It has a habitat of woodlands, wooded rivers, and timbered swamps. It feeds on small mammals, amphibians, reptiles, and birds. It usually hunts by watching from a perch.

This Red-Tailed Hawk was seen and photographed at the Wehr Nature Center, Franklin, Wisconsin

Select this link to see photos or a slideshow of the Red Tailed Hawk

The adult Red-Tailed Hawk is a large brownish broad-winged wide-tailed hawk with a Rufus tail. An inhabitant of open country it is commonly seen perched on polls or  trees, or sailing over fields and woods. Although adults can be recognized by the reddish brown tail, the rest of the plumage can be quite variable. Red-Tails can range from blackish to rufous- brown to nearly white. Their diet is mammals, many birds, and reptiles. They have a habitat of open country, woodlands, prairie, groves, mountains, plains, and roadside. Their range covers Alaska, Canada, and the United States.

The Cooper’s Hawk photo was taken from my back door as I was watching a swarm of smaller birds in the backyard at a feeder. Its height is estimated at 20 inches.

Select this link to see photos or a slideshow of the Cooper’s Hawk

The juvenile Cooper’s Hawk is a short winged long tailed bird that is brown with a streaked breast and white belly. The tail of the female is rounded, the male less so. Its range is from south Canada, United States, to northern Mexico. Its habitat is mature forest, open woodland, wood edges, and river groves. Feeding on birds and small mammals it hunts by stealth, approaching its prey through dense covering, as seen here, and then pouncing with a rapid powerful flight. Its short wings and long tail make it fast and maneuverable for quick threading among the branches of the trees.

This is my second Hawk to photograph. I was watching a swarm of smaller birds passing through my yard, landing briefly, and then passing on. I saw something larger passing overhead and landing in a tree over a bird feeder. Looking up I had just enough time to get these photos before it took off. It took awhile to identify the bird with the wide tail banding to be a Cooper’s Hawk.

This short Cooper's Hawk was photographed in Muskego, Wisconsin. It has an estimated height of 14.5 inches.

This short Cooper’s Hawk was photographed in Muskego, Wisconsin. It has an estimated height of 14.5 inches.