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hawk profile

hawk profile
Photo Information
Copyright: Matthew Harrison (matthew) Silver Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 17 W: 1 N: 86] (342)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2007-09-12
Categories: Birds
Camera: Fuji S5 Pro, AF-S VR Nikkor 70-300 f/4.5-5.6 IF-ED
Exposure: f/5.6
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version
Date Submitted: 2007-09-14 9:10
Viewed: 4212
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 20
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Ferruginous Hawk

Conservation status

Near Threatened
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia

Phylum: Chordata

Class: Aves

Order: Falconiformes

Family: Accipitridae

Genus: Buteo

Species: B. regalis

Binomial name
Buteo regalis
(Gray, 1844)
The Ferruginous Hawk, (Buteo regalis), is a large buzzard-type hawk and is the largest hawk species although not considered a True Hawk.

Adults have long broad wings and a broad grey, rusty or white tail. The legs are feathered to the talons, like the Rough-legged Hawk. There are two colour forms:

Light morph birds are rusty brown on the upper parts and pale on the head, neck and underparts with rust on the legs and some rust marking on the underwing. The upper wings are grey.
Dark morph birds are dark brown on both upperparts and underparts with light areas on the upper and lower wings.
Their breeding habitat is prairie and open country in mid-western North America. They build a stick nest on top of a tree or cliff edge, sometimes on the ground. Sometimes, cattle dung is used to line nest; historically, buffalo dung was used.

In the central part of their range, they are permanent residents. Northern birds migrate to the southern United States and Mexico.

These birds search for prey while flying over open country or from a perch. They may also wait in ambush outside the prey's burrow. They mainly eat small or medium-sized mammals such as jackrabbits and ground squirrels, also snakes and large insects.

Studies have found that prairie dogs can be a main prey item for Ferruginous Hawks, linking them to the populations of prairie dog towns in the mid-west and southwestern United States, which have been declining in recent years.

In flight, these birds soar with their wings in a dihedral. "Ferruginous" refers to the rusty colour of the light morph birds.

This bird's numbers are declining due to loss of habitat. This bird may also be sensitive to the use of pesticides on farms; they are also frequently shot.


earthtraveler, vihang8846, Maite, warnzy has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Hi Matthew,
Great portrait of this Hawk
Fine detail, color, and POV
The small DOF leads attention onto the eye which is beautiful
Super composition!

Hi Matthew,
very nice close-up of this hawk. Nice composition and the picture is very clear. Great one!

  • Great 
  • PeterZ Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 5137 W: 166 N: 13121] (49139)
  • [2007-09-14 10:34]

Hello Matthew,
Beautiful focus on the eye. Very good details and composition.

Hello Matthew
This is a great portrait where you have captured perfect sharpness in the eye which to me is what a bird of prey is all about...perhaps an f7 or f8 would have just bought out the detail on the tip of the beak.
TFS and Best Regards

hi matthew
excellent snap
good sharpness and framing
i just love raptors
this pic shows the pride and killer instinct i nthe eyes of the falcon
great shot

  • Great 
  • jesst Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 368 W: 0 N: 172] (2441)
  • [2007-09-14 11:19]

Wonderful! Sharp is better then we can wait from photo.

  • Great 
  • Maite Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 998 W: 65 N: 1270] (5199)
  • [2007-09-14 11:25]

WOWWWW!! I'm so pleased with this shot of yours!!
I really love it!!
How well captured the nature of this marvellous species! Magnificent details and very beautiful close-up!
Congratulations and thank you very much for sharing.

hi matthew
great details !!!
very nice close up
what else ? bravo in french

aleks ;)
best regards


Great job,
lovely shot, great exposure,


Hi Matthew,

You're captured stunning detail in this close-up study. I love the composition.

Kind regards,


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