Soaring Hawk

Soaring Hawk title=
Soaring Hawk
8 Comments
Reads 2076

By Chuck Cagara

I spied this hawk soaring high overhead. The angle provided a nice view of the undercarriage and the intricate feather pattern.

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pii Feb 14, 2018 06:57 PM
Soaring Hawk

Red-tailed has dark leading edges of the wings on the part of the wing closest to the body. Also note the breast is pale and the band just below is darker. The red tail is more certain with age. The Red-shouldered is smaller and has a banded tail. The back is more speckled. Throat is not pale. There is a red wash on the shoulders and the red on the underside is more prominent in the adult. On birds flying by, the wing beat of the Red-shouldered is faster & stiffer. It takes practice.

FondofSB Feb 13, 2018 08:51 PM
Soaring Hawk

Gorgeous animal ! Gorgeous picture ! Thanks .

a-1519578812 Feb 13, 2018 08:23 PM
Soaring Hawk

www.birds.cornell.edu/ -----Cornell Bird Lab is a terrific resource. I especially like the help with identifying bird song/calls.

a-1519578812 Feb 13, 2018 08:21 PM
Soaring Hawk

Adult red-tail. Soars in a very slight 'V' with "fingers" spread (wing tips). Beefy hawk. (Audubon tells us: "Broad, beefy hawks are generally classified as Buteos, and the Red-tail is one of the beefiest.") Good luck learning all the different morphs and life stages.

John Wiley Feb 13, 2018 02:04 PM
Soaring Hawk

I'm no "birder" but do watch birds quite often. Guess because they fly. :) If you look at the red tail hawk wiki, does it seem to answer your question Chuck? If you scroll down, near the bottom of that page is a link to the wikiMEDIA Category:Buteo jamaicensis with pix. My impression is that the underside of the tail is a light color like your pic, and that the red is on top so that when light shines thru it (unlike your pic) the tail looks red. We've been seeing red tails lately too, flying in pairs and often attended by crows. Guess it's mating season?

Flicka Feb 13, 2018 01:16 PM
Soaring Hawk

Chuck, This is a magnificent photo. "Undercarriage", I like that term, and the view.

a-1519578812 Feb 13, 2018 12:30 PM
Soaring Hawk

Would one of our birders please ID this hawk for us? I'm trying to get better at red shoulder vs red tail vs kite vs whatever -- our local birds of prey. Honestly, they're all pretty similar without a bird book in hand.

macpuzl Feb 13, 2018 09:32 PM
Soaring Hawk

One thing that really helps with beginning to identify hawks is to learn the various combinations of broad/narrow wings with broad/narrow tails when in flight. Broadly speaking, narrow wings and narrow tails are divers (kestrels, falcons, or kites), broad wings with narrow tails are accipiters (ambush hunters like Cooper's and Sharp-shinned), and broad wings with broad tails are buteos (soaring hawks like the Red-tails). Of course, there are plenty of complications and exceptions, but it's still a helpful rule of thumb to start.

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