Bird of the Month, February 2020 - Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed hawk

Buteo jamaicensis

There are lovers and there are fighters, and well, the Red-tailed hawk is both. This bird of prey is a Debs Park favorite – look up and you’ll often find pairs soaring around in the sky taking advantage of the thermal uplift. If you don’t think you’ve seen one, you’ve definitely heard one. Their call has been used in movies and TV as the “generic raptor sound” – even when the bird featured isn’t actually a red-tailed hawk. Red-tailed hawks are lovers at heart. Like many raptor species, they are monogamous. Once they find a mate, most pairs stay together for life (although, break-ups are not necessarily uncommon). Pairs can often be seen soaring and hunting together. Red-tailed hawks are carnivorous and highly opportunistic feeders – their most common prey are small mammals such as rodents, but they’re also known to eat fish, reptiles, and invertebrates. Come to Debs and watch these love birds dancing in the sky!

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