Hawks: The Masters of the Sky
Hawks are a group of birds of prey that belong to the family Accipitridae, which also includes eagles, kites, harriers, and vultures. They are widely distributed across the world and vary greatly in size, shape, color, and behavior. They are known for their sharp vision, powerful talons, and hunting skills. They feed on a variety of animals, such as rodents, rabbits, birds, reptiles, fish, and insects.
Hawks have a long history of being admired and revered by humans. They have been used for falconry since ancient times, and have been symbols of courage, strength, wisdom, and freedom in many cultures. They have also inspired many legends, myths, and stories.
In this article, we will introduce you to some of the most common and interesting types of hawks that can be found around the world, and provide you with some facts and features about them.
Types of Hawks
There are more than 200 species of hawks worldwide, but they can be classified into two main groups: the buteonine hawks and the accipitrine hawks.
Buteonine hawks are also known as buzzards or broad-winged hawks. They have broad wings and tails, short legs and bills, and rounded heads. They are mostly found in open habitats, such as grasslands, savannas, deserts, and farmlands. They soar high in the sky and use their keen eyesight to spot their prey. They often hunt by diving from above or by pouncing from a perch. Some examples of buteonine hawks are:
- Red-tailed hawk: This is one of the most widespread and familiar hawks in North America. It has a brown body, a white chest, a red tail, and a dark band across its belly. It can be found in a variety of habitats, from forests to fields to cities. It feeds on rodents, rabbits, birds, snakes, and carrion. It is known for its loud and raspy scream that sounds like “kee-eeeee-arr”.
- Ferruginous hawk: This is the largest hawk in North America. It has a pale body with rusty legs and wings. It can be found in open areas with prairie dogs or ground squirrels. It feeds mainly on these rodents, but also on rabbits, birds, reptiles, and insects. It is known for its graceful flight and its ability to hover in the air.
- Harris’s hawk: This is a dark brown hawk with chestnut shoulders and legs. It can be found in arid regions of southwestern North America and Central and South America. It feeds on rabbits, rodents,
Source: Conversation with Bing, 4/28/2023
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