Broad Winged Hawk

(Buteo platypterus)


Arrived at Lakeside Nature Center on November 25, 1995.

This female broad-winged hawk was found in a box left at the front door of Lakeside Nature Center.  Taped to the box was a note, asking people at the center to care for her.  The bird had a  permanent eye injury.  Curiously, the hawk had leather jesses on her legs, suggesting that she had been trained and was accustomed to being handled.  Although she is not imprinted on people, she has acclimated to captivity.  Because of her eye injury, she can not hunt for herself and can not be released.

Natural history notes.

  • This is a common woodland hawk that hunts during the day for rodents, large insects and small reptiles.

  • Broad-winged hawks migrate in large flocks and hundreds may be viewed at once as they 'kettle' or flock within thermals, riding aloft in warm air.

  • They winter in the southeastern United States.  Some even fly as far as South America.

Check out this hawk's picture gallery.

For more information on broad-winged hawks, check out the Critter Corner entry.