Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Hawks

Welcome to Week #36 of the Bird Weekly Photo Challenge. Week #36 challenge is all about the Hawks!

The feature image is a Red-shouldered Hawk.

Accipitriformes is an order of avians with 262 species and 75 genera in 4 extant families. Accipitriformes is derived from the latin word accipiter “hawk” plus new latin -iformes “like”. There are three families within the order. Accipitridae, meaning small to large birds with strongly hooked bills; includes hawks, eagles, vultures, harriers and kites. Pandionidae includes the osprey and Sagittariidae includes the secretarybird. It may also include an extinct family called Teratornithidae which was a large bird of prey living in North and South America.

Accipitriformes does not include falcons. The DNA of falcons have matched them to be closely related to parrots and passerines. The Black Vulture and Turkey Vulture found in North America are not among these either. They belong to the order Cathartiformes and the family Cathartidae.


Osprey in flight hunting for fish.

The Osprey is the only species in its family of Pandionidae. The Osprey can be found on every continent except Antarctica. They are found wherever water is present. Their diet consists of fresh fish. They can live 15-20 years.

Cooper’s Hawk

Cooper's Hawk perched up after an unsuccessful attempt to catch a bird on my feeder.

Cooper’s Hawk is a North American bird of prey. They are often seen flying high above at treetop level looking for birds to snack on. They will fly through vegetation to get a meal. Often times, they are unwanted visitors at bird feeders. In the instance of this photo, this Cooper’s Hawk swooped in trying to capture birds on our feeders with no success, landing on the electrical wires leading from the street to our house. I was in the dining room eating lunch when it all happened. I keep my camera on the table at all times ready so I was able to get the photo through the window. This was the first time I’ve seen one in my yard just a couple of days ago.

Red-shouldered Hawks

Red-shouldered Hawks paired up perched in a tree.

Red-shouldered Hawks are found in North America and are one of the most distinctive hawks with their high pitched whistle. It is the most common hawk in Florida. They are easy to identify when perched like this pair, but in flight, translucent crescents near the wingtip help with identification.

Ferruginous Hawk

Ferruginous Hawk see on a power pole in Montana.

Found mostly in the central and western part of the United States, the Ferruginous Hawk is found in prairies, deserts and open ranges. They hunt from high in the sky or perched from a lone tree. This one was hunting and we watched it swoop down into the prairie grass and perch up on the electrical pole in Montana at dusk.

Harris’s Hawk

Harris's Hawk, popular with falconers. This guy lives in Wesley Chapel, Florida.

Harris’s Hawk is a favorite among falconers. In the wild, these hawks are found in the southwestern part of the U.S., Mexico, South America and small areas in Europe. This one lives in Florida with his handler and other birds of prey. Harris’s Hawk hunt in groups cooperatively which makes it easier for them to capture prey together, rather than individually.

Bald Eagle

The National Bird of the United States, the Bald Eagle perched high in a tree.

The Bald Eagle is another North American predator and happens to be the National Bird of the United States since 1782. In the native American community, the Bald Eagle has been a spiritual symbol for far longer than the U.S. has been a union. This bird was once endangered, but through many conservation efforts, they are flourishing and making a tremendous comeback.

Upcoming challenges can be found on my Bird Weekly Challenge Page.

Next time…Week #37 – Birds with White Feathers

68 Comments on “Bird Weekly – Photo Challenge – Hawks

  1. When I’m at the beach, I occasionally see an osprey – more commonly perched on a bridge’s rail looking at the water as I drive by. Even seen Bald Eagles nesting on the Alabama coast. When I’m at home, Red-Tailed Hawks are a common sight. I also seen a Bald Eagle there November through March – and gloriously witnessed it swooping toward the water, and then flying away with a fish. Then again, when I cruised in Alaska, Bald Eagles are very common.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Red-tailed Hawks are quite common here too. One got and took away our Love Bird many years ago. Red-shouldered Hawks are the most common. Bald Eagles are quite common in Washington and Alaska. They are making a come back so hopefully, they will be more common throughout the US. Since they are not just fish eaters, they can survive just about anywhere there is a body of water. πŸ™‚


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    • I hope you get to see it someday. Guess a trip to Florida is in order once the pandemic is gone. I think you have a couple years to plan. LOL! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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    • Oh, Maria….I’m sorry that you don’t have any, but I’m sure we will see you back next week. Birds with white feathers. You will be missed. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

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  7. I liked the photo of the pair of red-shouldered hawks. They look like they’re posing for you and showing their best side. πŸ™‚ I didn’t know of falcon’s relation to parrots & passerines. Interesting.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Siobhan. They were pretty cooperative. Always interesting to learn something new, isn’t it? I learn something new almost every week. Keeps me going! πŸ™‚

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    • Yes they are in the same family. I’m working on the Feeding the Birds post. I’ll post it in a couple of days. Love your birds and the kites! So glad things are moving on the house now and congratulations on the new job! So sorry to here about your MIL. She is in a better place. πŸ₯°

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      • Are you stalking my themes? LOL! If you are, keep up the good work! I’m really excited that things are moving along on your house finally. I know that you have been quite stressed out over the situation and I completely understand where you are coming from. My ex-husband & I had a house built from the bottom up and our manager got ill at the beginning. I became my own manager, going morning, noon and night…contacting the builder and following it the whole time. What should have taken 2 1/2 months, was almost 5 months. Hang in there! It is so worth it! πŸ™‚

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      • Permits do take a while. I’m sure even longer right now with covid with more people working from home. I know you are getting excited! πŸ™‚
        Anytime you want to work your themes in with my, I’m happy about it. πŸ™‚

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