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Ferruginous Hawk

Ferruginous Hawk

(Buteo regalis)


(wingspan: 53’’-60’’) The Ferruginous Hawk has a large mouth and long, broad, pointed wings. Their chest and the underneath of their tail is white. The adults have a rusty color on their back, shoulders, legs, and tip of tail. Ferruginous Hawks are feathered to the feet. The Juveniles lack the rusty coloring. The hawk's flight feathers are a dark brown.


These birds primarily prey on mammals such as prairie dogs, ground squirrels, rabbits, gophers, and other various rodents. Occasionally they will hunt birds, reptiles, and large insects.


Populations of Ferruginous Hawks live on the eastern plains of Colorado year-round. Others come to Colorado for the winter from the northwestern U.S. and edge of Canada.


Pairs tend to stay monogamous and will even use the same nest year after year. The female will lay two to four eggs per brood. Once they hatch, the babies will spend five to six weeks in the nest before they fledge.

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