Red-Tailed Hawk

(Buteo jamaicensis)

The Zoo is home to one female red-tailed hawk who came to the Zoo in May 2014. The red-tailed hawk is a medium-sized bird of prey. Its head is distinguished by a hooked beak and supraorbital ridge over the eyes.

Animal Facts


Red-tailed hawks feed mostly on small- to medium-sized mammals such as voles, squirrels, rabbits and hares. They rarely take (but have been observed consuming) birds, reptiles, amphibians, fish, large insects and carrion.

Status in The Wild

International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List status

Red-tailed hawks are widespread and the most common hawk throughout North America.

In Alaska and Canada, they migrate to avoid severe winters, with migration peaking in October/November. Habitats vary but include rural and urban areas that contain woods, open country, deserts and mountains.