Ferruginous Hawk

The world’s largest soaring hawk, perfectly suited to the open skies and remarkably unafraid of humans often in close proximity

Quartl
Quartl

Ferruginous Hawks are distinguished by rusty backs and shoulders, pale heads, and white tails. They have a white patch on the upper wing surface at the base of the flight feathers. Their wings are brown on top and white on the bottom, and they have rusty legs with a dark V on top and whitish underparts. Females are noticeably larger and have similar plumage to males.

They are migratory and travel short distances between breeding and wintering grounds. They inhabit arid grasslands and shrub-steppe ecosystems. Their diet primarily comprises small to medium-sized mammals such as jackrabbits, mice, and squirrels. The loss of uncultivated land and prey has hampered this species’ breeding success.

Distribution

Country
Population est.
Status
Year
Comments
Canada
2016
Breeding
Mexico
2016
Non-Breeding
United States
80,000
Official estimate
LC
2016

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Terrestrial / Aquatic

Altricial / Precocial

Polygamous / Monogamous

Dimorphic (size) / Monomorphic

Active: Diurnal / Nocturnal

Social behavior: Solitary / Pack / Herd

Diet: Carnivore / Herbivore / Omnivore / Piscivorous / Insectivore

Migratory: Yes / No

Domesticated: Yes / No

Dangerous: Yes / No