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Ferruginous Hawk

Buteo regalis ORDER: ACCIPITRIFORMES FAMILY: ACCIPITRIDAE

IUCN Conservation Status: Least Concern

A raptor of the open country of the West, the Ferruginous Hawk is the largest American hawk.

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At a GlanceHelp

Measurements
Both Sexes
Length
22–27.2 in
56–69 cm
Wingspan
52.4–55.9 in
133–142 cm
Weight
34.5–73.2 oz
977–2074 g
Other Names
  • Ferruginous Rough-leg
  • Buse rouileuse (French)
  • Aquililla patas asperas (Spanish)

Cool Facts

  • Before the elimination of bison in the West, nests of the Ferruginous Hawk were often partially constructed of bison bones and wool.
  • The Rough-legged Hawk, the Ferruginous Hawk, and the Golden Eagle are the only American hawks to have legs feathered all the way to the toes.

Habitat


Grassland

Open country, primarily prairies, plain and badlands, breeding in trees near streams or on steep slopes, sometimes on mounds in open desert.

Food


Mammals

Rabbits, ground squirrels, and prairie dogs.

Nesting

Nesting Facts
Clutch Size
1–8 eggs
Condition at Hatching
Helpless and covered in down.
Nest Placement

Tree

Behavior


Soaring

Conservation

status via IUCN

Least Concern

Considered threatened in several states.

Credits

  • Bechard, M. J., and J. K. Schmutz. 1995. Ferruginous Hawk (Buteo regalis). In The Birds of North America, No. 172 (A. Poole and F. Gill, eds.). The Academy of Natural Sciences, Philadelphia, and The American Ornithologists’ Union, Washington, D.C.

Range Map Help

Ferruginous Hawk Range Map
View dynamic map of eBird sightings