The White-tailed Hawk is a bird of prey found in the tropics or sub-tropical habitats in North, Central and South America. This species of raptor is a resident across its range; it does not generally migrate.
White-tailed Hawks in adult plumage have grey upperparts and white underparts. There is a prominent reddish shoulder patch on the wings; the bird is named for its white tail, which has a black band on the end.
White-tailed Hawks are fierce predators who often hunt by hovering in the air and searching for prey. They hunt a variety of prey items, including rabbits, large insects, snakes, and rats. Opportunistic feeders, they will also eat carrion.
Details & Statistics
The White-tailed Hawk is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List and was last assessed in 2012 by BirdLife International. This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend appears to be increasing, and hence the species does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size is extremely large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.