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Ferruginous Hawk

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About the Ferruginous Hawk

Also known as: Ferrugineous Rough-leg, Ferruginous Buzzard, Rusty Squirrel Hawk

The Ferruginous Hawk is a large type of buteo hawk that lives across western parts of North America. They prefer open country - prairies, open plains, badlands, and grasslands.

These large, powerful birds eat a variety of prey animals, including ground squirrels, muskrats, prairie dogs, and jackrabbits. Their large yellow gape (mouth width) is apparent and allows Ferruginous Hawks to swallow large prey whole!

Ferruginous Hawks use a variety of nest sites, including trees, rocky outcrops, artificial nest platforms, the rocky ground, or even haystacks! Usually three or four eggs are laid. Male offspring fledge up to 10 days before female chicks.

Details & Stats

Hatched Added to Birdorable on: 27 July 2012
Scientific Name Buteo regalis
  • Accipitriformes
  • Accipitridae
  • Buteo
  • B. regalis
Birdorable Family Birds of Prey
Conservation Status Least Concern
  • Least Concern (LC)
  • Near Threatened (NT)
  • Vulnerable (VU)
  • Endangered (EN)
  • Critically Endangered (CR)
  • Extinct in the Wild (EW)
  • Extinct (EX)
Source: IUCN Red List
(as of 28 September 2017)
Units: Imperial Metric
22 to 27 inches
52 to 56 inches
34.5 to 73 ounces
Range North America Central America United States (West)

International Names

  • 王鵟 (Chinese)
  • káně královská (Czech)
  • Kongevåge (Danish)
  • Rosse Ruigpootbuizerd (Dutch)
  • kuningashiirihaukka (Finnish)
  • Buse rouilleuse (French)
  • Königsbussard (German)
  • poiana ferruginosa (Italian)
  • アカケアシノスリ [akakeashinosuri] (Japanese)
  • Kongevåk (Norwegian)
  • myszolów królewski (Polish)
  • Королевский канюк (Russian)
  • Busardo Herrumbroso (Spanish)
  • Kungsvråk (Swedish)

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Bonanza Bird #18: Ferruginous Hawk

Bonanza Bird #18: Ferruginous Hawk

Today a beautiful bird of prey from the American west joins Birdorable: the Ferruginous Hawk! Ferruginous Hawks are the largest species of hawk found in North America. They are even sometimes mistaken for ... more