Hawk or Eagle

by Rick
(Buford Ga)

Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk

Q. What kind of bird is this? About every 3 days it kills a squirrel and eats it on top of telephone pole.

A. This is a Red-tailed Hawk. The field mark that helps determine this is the streaked belly band you can see just between and slightly above the legs in this photo. Red-tailed Hawks eat a variety of prey including insects, lizards, rodents and squirrels - as you have witnessed. Whatever is easiest to catch is what they'll eat.

Red-tailed Hawk Id and Information

Raptor Identification Guides

Here's more information about the Red-tailed Hawk and
Red-tailed Hawk Identification.

Comments for Hawk or Eagle

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Not an eagle because...
by: Bliss Sonia

You can tell that this is not an eagle because the only eagles likely to be found in your area, Georgia, would be Bald Eagles. Both adult and sub-adult Bald Eagles both have solid brown feathers across the breast and belly, unlike the Red-tail Hawk. There are dark-phases of RTHAs (red-tailed hawks), but you can use relative size and other field characteristics to distinguish between the two.

Thanks for the photo!

Red-tailed Hawk in Texas?

Every time we mow the coastal bermuda on our ranch, this hawk flies up into any tree that is close to our tractor and watches to see if we scare up any dinner for him. I believe it is a red tail hawk. Our ranch is in guadalupe county in south central texas. Is this part of their area of habitation? He is quite magnificent and makes good company during our pasture mowing.

Re: Texas Hawk
by: Bird Watching Bliss

It is likely that the hawk you have described is a Red-tailed Hawk. They often will hunt over open fields just waiting and watching for something to move, typically small mammals.

Sounds like its taking advantage of your mowing activity and opportunistically using you to help disturb potential prey. It also sounds like you are mutually benefiting from the activity!

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