Red-tailed Hawk

(Buteo jamaicensis)

Arrived at Lakeside Nature Center on December 10, 2002.

The second resident red-tail was found on the ground in the Blue Springs, Missouri, area.  He was diagnosed with an old fracture to the humerus in the right wing that had healed poorly and could not be repaired.  Additionally, because the hawk readily stepped onto a gloved hand, it was obvious that someone had the bird for some time prior to its being found on the ground.  It is illegal for any unlicensed person to take a bird of prey out of the wild.  Unfortunately, this bird would never fly well enough to survive. 

Luckily, Lakeside Nature Center was fortunate to have room on its raptor license for a different phase of the beautiful red-tailed hawk.  Because he is a permanent resident at Lakeside Nature Center, many people will have an opportunity to see a red-tailed hawk up close and learn about this important species.

Natural History Notes:

  • Red-tailed hawks are seen hunting during the day in open areas.

  • Small mammals, such as rabbits and rodents, are their primary diet.

Check out this hawk's picture gallery.

For more information on red-tailed hawks, check out the Critter Corner entry.