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Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk
Scientific Classification
Order: Falconiformes
Binomial name
Buteo jamaicensis

The Red-tailed Hawk, Buteo jamaicensis, is a large hawk.

Adults have a dark mark on the underwing, between the body and the wrist (the patagium). They have broad wings; some but not all colour variations have a red tail and a dark band across the belly. Eastern birds have a dark red tail; there are two main colour variations:

Other variations are: Their breeding habitat is open country with high perches across most of North America. They build a stick nest in a large tree, cactus or on a cliff edge; they may also nest on man-made structures.

In most of the United States, Red-tailed Hawks are permanent residents. Northern birds migrate further south.

These birds wait on a high perch and swoop down on prey; they may also patrol open areas. They mainly eat small mammals, birds and reptiles.

In flight, these birds soar with wings in a slight dihedral, flapping as little as possible.