Chirps and Cheeps

A Photo Journal of My Birding Adventures & Observations

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  A Wyoming County Nemesis

Published: January 15, 2019
Tags: General Observations, rough-legged hawk

I finally caught up with a Rough-legged Hawk today in Wyoming County.  It's been a lengthy chase and I'm glad to say it's over!  What a handsome bird to finally catch up to too!  This bird was a light morph, adult male.

Did you know Rough-legged Hawks are one of the few hawks you can identify their sex by their appearance?  Most other species can only be differentiated by their size, the females being the larger of the two sexes.  Without going into too much detail, though, I determined this guy to be a male by the dark brown mottling on the underwings, where a female would have some buffy tones.  Also, the terminal band (end of tail) appears to have a second band where females only have one.  There are a few other characteristics but these are the main ones I saw pretty clearly to sex it as a male.  A juvenile, by the way, would have a dusky tail band, not at all as clearly defined as this hawk's.

Anyway, I've probably lost most of you - so just enjoy the few shots I got of this gorgeous but elusive guy!

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