Red-tailed Hawk

(Buteo jamaicensis)

Conservation Status
Red-tailed Hawk
Photo by Ramona Abrego
  IUCN Red List

LC - Least Concern

 
  NatureServe

N5B, N5N - Secure Breeding and Nonbreeding

SNRB, SNRN - Unranked Breeding and Nonbreeding

 
  Minnesota

not listed

 
           
           
 
Description
 
 

 

 
     
 

Size

 
 

Male: 18 to 23 in length
48 to 60 wingspan

Female: 20 to 25 in length
48¾ to 60 wingspan

 
     
 

Voice

 
   
     
 

 

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Open country with some trees

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Migration

 
 

Mid-February to late April and mid-August through November

 
     
 

Nesting

 
 

 

 
     
 

Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common migrant and 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

Buteo (buteos)  
       
 

Subordinate Taxa

 
 

Alaska Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis alascensis)

Caribbean Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis jamaicensis)

Costa Rican Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis costaricensis)

Cuban Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis solitudinus)

Eastern Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis borealis)

Florida Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis umbrinus)

Fuertes’s Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis fuertesi)

Harlan’s Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis harlani)

Krider’s Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis kriderii)

Northern Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis abieticola)

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis hadropus)

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis kemsiesi)

Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis suttoni)

Socorro Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis socorroensis)

Tres Marias Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis fumosus)

Western Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis calurus)

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 
Visitor Photos
 
           
 

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Gregory Gilman

 
    Red-tailed Hawk      
 

Ramona Abrego

 
    Red-tailed Hawk   Red-tailed Hawk  
 

Lynn Rubey

 
  An immature Red-tailed Hawk landing on a tree limb in The Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge turning to look at me before turning its attention on to a prey before taking off flying in the other direction.   Red-tailed Hawk  
         
 

 

  Red-tailed Hawk  
 

Norm & Peg Dibble

 
 

Red Tailed Hawk?

Taking a bath in the stream, Summer 2008—one of our most exciting sightings. He sat on two different fences in our yard drying out and didn’t care that Norm was photographing him at all. We thought birds nearby were unaware and would be in grave danger, but he did not care about them. We figured he didn’t go after birds, but more so rodents.

  Red-tailed Hawk  
           
 

It started to sprinkle and Norm stood next to him in the driveway with an umbrella snapping his picture (with normal lens) for quite a while! What a sight.

  Red-tailed Hawk  
 

Dan W. Andree

 
 

Red-tailed Hawk at nest....

Red-tailed Hawk at nest.... Not the best photo but one cannot stick around their area that long without disturbing them. I like this hawk and hawks are pretty awesome when they are soaring high in the sky to. This nest was in a White Pine tree in Mn. April 2018.

  Red-tailed Hawk  
           
 

Red-tailed Hawk in flight...

In this photo you can see the rusty or reddish brown tail.

  Red-tailed Hawk  
           
 

A mature hawk high in the sky

 
    Red-tailed Hawk      
           
 

Immature Red-tailed Hawk in Flight.

 
    Red-tailed Hawk      
 

Wayne Rasmussen

 
 

Black Dog Preserve is located on the south side of the Minnesota River in Burnsville. This hawk caught my attention on a cold winter day.

  Red-tailed Hawk  
           
 

Oxbow Co Park, Olmstead Co, MN

 
    Red-tailed Hawk      
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
 
 

 

 
           

 

Camera

 

     
 
Slideshows
 
  Red-tailed Hawk
Andy Reago & Chrissy McClarren
 
  Red-tailed Hawk  
  Eastern Red-tailed Hawk
JMC Nature Photos
 
  Eastern Red-tailed Hawk  
  Western Red-tailed Hawk
JMC Nature Photos
 
  Western Red-tailed Hawk  
  Red-Tailed Hawks
Craig A. Mullenbach
 
  Red-Tailed Hawks  
  Red-tailed Hawk Hunting Expedition
Craig A. Mullenbach
 
  Red-tailed Hawk Hunting Expedition  
 
About

I saw this hawk on a flagpole the day before I took these shots. I decided to bring the DSLR the next day knowing the chance I'd see it again would be remote. I saw it on the top of the light pole as soon as I pulled into the parking lot. As I approached, I took some shots. Within a minute or two, it swooped down to grab a mouse. After it secured its prey, it proceeded to the top of another light pole nearby. For the nest several minutes I watched as it tore apart and ate the little mouse.

The last 12 or so in this set are from 8-18-10 but it might be the same hawk. It hangs around work fairly regularly.

 

 

slideshow

       
 
Visitor Videos
 
       
 

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Other Videos
 
  Red-Tailed Hawk
Gary92029
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Nov 22, 2006

http://www.ecolifefoundation.org/

A short close up movie of Samantha a Red-Tailed Hawk and Kent Mahaffey. Berwick Productions.

Thank you for your support in caring for our birds.

   
  Red-tailed Hawk - Buteo jamaicensis
JCVdude
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Mar 7, 2011

The Red-tailed Hawk occupies a wide range of habitats and altitudes, including deserts, grasslands, coniferous and deciduous forests, tropical rainforests, agricultural fields and urban areas. It lives throughout the North American continent, except in areas of unbroken forest or the high arctic. It is legally protected in Canada, Mexico and the United States by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act.

This is probably the most common hawk in North America. If you've got sharp eyes you'll see several individuals on almost any long car ride, anywhere. Red-tailed Hawks soar above open fields, slowly turning circles on their broad, rounded wings. Other times you'll see them atop telephone poles, eyes fixed on the ground to catch the movements of a vole or a rabbit, or simply waiting out cold weather before climbing a thermal updraft into the sky.

   
  Red-Tailed Hawk (Buteo Jamaicensis)
tomb0171
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jan 28, 2010

Red-Tailed Hawk (Buteo Jamaicensis)

* Family: Accipitridae,
* Genus: Buteo,
* Species: B. jamaicensis,
* Class: Aves,
* Type: Bird,
* Diet: Carnivore,
* Average life span in the wild: 21 years,
* Size: Body, 18 to 26 in (45 to 65 cm); wingspan, 3.8 to 4.3 (1.1 to 1.3 m),
* Weight: 24.3 to 51.5 oz (690 to 1,460 g),

** Did you know? The red-tailed hawk is displaying an aggressive posture when it holds its body and head upright while its feathers are standing erect.

More info: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red-tailed_Hawk
or http://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Red-tailed_Hawk/lifehistory
or http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/birds/red-tailed-hawk/

   
  Red-Tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) in HD
loko4wind
 
   
 
About

Uploaded on Jun 25, 2010

Red Tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis) in a raining day in Watertown, MA

   
  Red Tailed Hawk Catches Squirrel and Eats It
refidnasb1
 
   
 
About

Published on Jan 6, 2014

Texas Red Tailed Hawk stalks, pursues and eats a large Fox Squirrel on January 5, 2014 during very cold weather for Texas and high winds. Hawks are carnivores (meat eaters) that belong to the category of birds known as raptors -- birds of prey. They have strong, hooked beaks; their feet have three toes pointed forward and one turned back; and their claws, or talons, are long, curved and very sharp. Prey is killed with the long talons and, if it is too large to swallow whole, it is torn to bite-sized pieces.

The red-tailed hawk is a most opportunistic hunter. Its diet is varied, but there is conclusive evidence now that 85 to 90 % is composed of small rodents, with rabbits, snakes and lizards included. Like all hawks, its talons are its main weapons.

   

 

Camcorder

 
 
Visitor Sightings
 
           
 

Report a sighting of this bird.

 
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Be sure to include a location.
 
  Deena Hillenbrand
12/20/2021

Location: Blomkest, MN

My backyard is full of those nasty little red squirrels and the hawk was in one of the evergreen trees eating a squirrel. I hope he sticks around and gets them all. I took a photo but their not very good ones. 

 
  Gregory Gilman
5/10/2020

Location: Rochester, MN

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Lynn Rubey
5/13/2019

Location: Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge

An immature Red-tailed Hawk landing on a tree limb in The Big Stone National Wildlife Refuge turning to look at me before turning its attention on to a prey before taking off flying in the other direction.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Michelle
8/26/2019 - 9/7/2019

Location: North St. Paul, MN

Hawk has hanging around the neighborhood. Do not see it every day but we can hear it.

  Dan W. Andree
April 2018

Location: Mn.

It was singing perched next to a grassy region. I have noticed a slight increase of the Eastern Meadow Lark due to a few more grassy or meadow like areas for them to live. Very nice sight to see and real pleasant to hear it sing.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Dan W. Andree
4/20/2018

Location: Norman Co. Mn.

In this photo you can see the rusty or reddish brown tail.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Ramona Abrego
9/23/2017

Location:Washington County

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Dan W. Andree
October 2016

Location: Rural Norman Co. Mn.

Immature Red-tailed Hawk in Flight.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Wayne Rasmussen
6/28/2016

Location: Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge, Black Dog Unit

Black Dog Preserve is located on the south side of the Minnesota River in Burnsville. This hawk caught my attention on a cold winter day.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Wayne Rasmussen
6/25/2016

Location: Oxbow Park & Zollman Zoo

Red-tailed Hawk

 
  Norm & Peg Dibble
Summer 2008

Location: Maple Grove, MN

It started to sprinkle and Norm stood next to him in the driveway with an umbrella snapping his picture (with normal lens) for quite a while! What a sight.

Red-tailed Hawk

 
           
 
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
 
   

 

 

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