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Birds of Prey Animal Fact Sheet
RED-TAILED HAWK
Buteo jamaicensis

Range:
One of the most common birds of prey in North America, in summer goes as far north as Canada

Usually dark brown back with pale mottling and cream/beige chest with some dark bands on lower belly. Color varies depending on region. Adult tail is rusty red with black band along the bottom; juveniles have a gray-brown tail with dark bars.

Frequently heard call, very majestic; often dubbed in for eagles and vultures during movies. Seen roosting on telephone poles and fences until ready to eat; Hunts for prey, very aggressive during hunt, known as "brutes" when hunting. Predators are other birds of prey, canines, felines.


Habitat: Woods, plains, prairie
Diet: Mainly eats rodents (mice, rats, rabbits), will take reptiles and other birds
Status: Least Concern (IUCN)
Approximate Dimensions of Adult: Large broad-winged, short tailed hawk weighing about 3-4 lbs.
Lifespan: Up to 20 years in the wild.
Reproduction & Offspring: Solitary nester, builds large solid nest up to 75 feet above ground in a tree or on a cliff with a small cup in center lined with fine green shoots; 1-4 whitish eggs are incubated for 27-33 days and stay in nest for about 5 weeks after hatching

 

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