Red-Tailed Hawk

Red-Tailed Hawk

Red-Tailed Hawk

Red-Tailed Hawk

Animal Red-Tailed Hawk
Common Name(s) Red-Tailed Hawk
Scientific Name buteo jamaicensis
Adults are called Male: Tiercel; Female: Hen
Young are called Eyas
Lifespan Wild: 21 yrs.; Captive: 25 – 30 yrs.
Adult Size 1.5 – 2 ft. tall; 3 – 3.5 ft. wingspan
Adult Weight 1.5 – 3 lbs.
Birth Size
Birth Weight 2 oz.
Gestation Period 4 – 5 weeks
Number of Young 1 – 3
Where Found Almost all of north and central America
Habitat Mixed forests and fields – deserts, grasslands, coastal regions, mountains, foothills, coniferous and deciduous woodlands, tropical rainforests, agricultural fields, and urban areas.
Diet Primarily small mammals, but also birds, bats, reptiles, fish, crustaceans, and insects.
Conservation Status Least Concern
Threats Cars, hunting, electrocution by power lines, disease, and starvation.
Red-tailed hawks are some of the more broad members of their family. They are generally heavier as well. The back is mostly dark brown, and the feathers on the tips of the wings are barred. The head is lighter in color, with a dark, curved beak and yellow or rusty colored eyes. The tail is fairly short and red, and gives it its name. The underside is light with dark bars made by the feather patterning.

Interesting Facts

  • Hawks’ eyesight is 8 times sharper than a human’s.
  • Both parents take care of the young.
  • They are monogamous, meaning they will mate with the same hawk for several years.
  • Red-tailed hawk nests are usually 2-3 ft. wide and up to 3 ft. tall.
  • Immature hawks have yellow eyes, and as they grow their eyes will darken to a reddish brown.

Additional Resources

  • http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/birds/red-tailed-hawk/?source=A-to-Z
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red-tailed_hawkhttp://www.kidsfront.com/animals/hawk.html
  • http://www.birds.cornell.edu/page.aspx?pid=2607#19
  • http://www.ndow.org/Species/Birds/Red-tailed_Hawk/
  • http://photoblog.statesman.com/red-tail-hawk-babies-nest-in-urban-austin