Cooper’s Hawk

(Accipiter cooperii)

Conservation Status
Cooper’s Hawk
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

     
  NatureServe

N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

SNRB, SNRN - Unranked Breeding and Nonbreeding

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
           
           
           
 
Description
 
 

Cooper’s Hawk is a medium-sized hawk. The cap and upper parts are bluish-gray. The nape of the neck is pale. The underparts are white with thin, horizontal, reddish-brown barring. Immature individuals are brown above with dark brown, vertical streaks on the breast and belly. The tail is relatively long and rounded at the end with a broad terminal band. It is bluish-gray above with black bars, pale below with dark bars.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

Male:

15″ to 17″ in length

27″ to 32″wingspan

Female:

17″ to 19″ in length

32″ to 37″wingspan

 
     
 

Voice

 
   
     
 

A loud cak-cak-cak-cak-cak lasting 2 to 5 seconds. When delivering food to the nest or receiving food at the nest the female makes a descending whaa call.

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
  Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus) is smaller, no more than 12″ in length. The tail is more rounded and has a narrower terminal band. The nape of the neck is dark.  
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Riparian and mixed woodlands and woodlots; suburban yards with bird feeders

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Migration

 
 

Late March to mid-May and mid-August through November

 
     
 

Nesting

 
 

 

 
     
 

Food

 
 

Songbirds, squirrels, and chipmunks

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Occurrence

 
 

Uncommon migrant, local breeder

 
         
 

Maps

 
 

The Minnesota Ornithologists’ Union All Seasons Species Occurrence Map

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
  Class Aves (birds)  
 

Order

Accipitriformes (hawks, eagles, kites, and allies)  
 

Family

Accipitridae (eagles, hawks, and kites)  
 

Subfamily

Accipitrinae  
 

Genus

Accipiter (accipiters)  
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

Share your photo of this bird.

 
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Molly and Robert Power

 
 

First time seeing one on our game cam!

 
    Cooper’s Hawk      
 

Bonnie Shoebottom

 
 

two days in a row on deck railing

 
    Cooper’s Hawk      
 

Norm & Peg Dibble

 
 

Here’s a Cooper’s Hawk, October 8, 2014, a frequent visitor to our yard looking for small birds.

 
    Cooper’s Hawk      
 

Gerry Garcia

 
    Cooper’s Hawk   Cooper’s Hawk  
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
 

A Cooper’s Hawk staking out a bird feeder in a suburban back yard.

 
    Cooper’s Hawk   Cooper’s Hawk  
           

 

Camera

 

     
 
Slideshows
 
Cooper's Hawk
Allen Chartier
  Cooper's Hawk  
Cooper's Hawk
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren
  Cooper's Hawk  
Cooper's Hawk
JMC Nature Photos
  Cooper's Hawk  
     

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

Share your video of this bird.

 
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Other Videos
 
  Cooper's Hawk (Accipitridae: Accipiter cooperii) Trapping with Decoy Owl and Mistnet
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jun 28, 2009

Female Cooper's Hawk photographed at Grand Forks, North Dakota (28 June 2009). Banded by Tim Driscoll and Tom Perry.

   
  Cooper's Hawk (Accipiter cooperii) "Whaa" call
Denise Wight
 
   
 
About

Published on Dec 23, 2015

An adult Cooper's Hawk (CAHA) giving the "whaa" call, from a leafless valley oak near Diablo Foothills Regional Park, Walnut Creek, California, 23 December 2015. This hawk was responding to another bird, which we did not see, making the same call from deep in a live oak about 100 feet away. I have only heard this call during the breeding season near COHAs' nests. The Birds of North America states that this call is "primarily given by females".

   
  Cooper's Hawk (Accipitridae: Accipiter cooperii) Male
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jul 4, 2009

Photographed at Grand Forks, North Dakota (04 July 2009). "This morning / the hawk / rose up / out of the meadow's browse / and swung over the lake-- / .... / and I said: remember / this is not something / of the red fire, this is / heaven's fistful / of death and destruction..." --Mary Oliver

   
  The Cooper's Hawk (Accipitridae: Accipiter cooperii)
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Dec 31, 2009

A brief but contemplative look at the Cooper's Hawk, which is a common breeding resident of forests, shelterbelts, and treed suburban residential areas in the upper midwest United States, Specimens shown here were photographed in North Dakota. SHOW MORE

   
  Cooper's Hawk - Épervier de Cooper - Azor de Cooper - Accipiter cooperii
elgalopinos
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Feb 1, 2011

Montreal botanical garden - Jardin Botanique de Montreal
Quebec, Canada

   
       

 

Camcorder

 
 
Visitor Sightings
 
           
 

Report a sighting of this bird.

 
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Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Be sure to include a location.
 
  Molly and Robert Power
4/9/2021

Location: Albany MN

First time seeing one on our game cam!

Cooper’s Hawk

 
  Bonnie Shoebottom
10/15/2019

Location: Centerville, Minnesota

two days in a row on deck railing

Cooper’s Hawk

 
  Gerry Garcia
4/18/2019

Location: West Bloomington, MN

Cooper’s Hawk

 
  Norm & Peg Dibble
10/8/2014

Location: Maple Grove, MN

Here’s a Cooper’s Hawk, October 8, 2014, a frequent visitor to our yard looking for small birds.

Cooper’s Hawk

 
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
 

Burnsville, MN

Des Moines River SNA

Lakeville, MN

Tamarack Nature Center

 

 

 

Binoculars


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