SE Colorado Birding

Birding and discussion: A conservation-oriented birding blog that emphasizes low-impact birding and sustainable birding practices together with the enjoyment of birds. Southeast Colorado offers a diversity of habitats which provide premiere birding opportunities. Save Sabal Palm

Friday, November 24, 2006

Probable juv Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk

While driving to Brush Hollow Reservoir today, I saw the hawk that looked like a juvenile dark Harlan's Red-tailed Hawk. Unfortunately the hawk was several hundred feet away so this photo is as enlarged as I can do. The blackish plumage is visible in this photo as is the white mottling on the upperwing coverts. Not easily seen in this photo is that the wingtips fall a little short of the tip of the tail.

Hawks From Every Angle, by Jerry Liguori, states that the Harlan's morph of the Red-tailed Hawk have white mottling while similar Western Red-tailed Hawks "typically show sparse buff mottling on the upperwing, or lack mottling altogether".

Though not visible in this photo, this hawk had a small but distinct whitish mottling on the back of its head. The tail plumage characteristics are not visible in the photo but they have wide, wavy tail bands. While most Harlan's show whitish or grayish tails, some like this bird have black/darkish tails.

Interestingly, this hawk was in the same groups of trees in which I saw a Harlan's Hawk last year.


Save trees in the Boreal forest for birds, not for paper--Opt out of catalogues

Weblog Commenting and Trackback by

  • Blogarama - The Blog Directory