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Jerry Ladewig — January 09, 04:29PM

can you identify this bird?

medium sized hawk, perched in tree on S. Springfield Ave. this week, blunt tail on the short side, charcoal grey back, white breast. wings medium length in flight. for sure not an owl. i have eliminated a number of types of hawks by looking at the Cornell Lab bird site. Thank you.

Fred Werner — January 18, 08:35PM

What city/state are you in? Did you get a photo of it? When it flew, were the wing-beats quick and fluttery, or deep and slow? First thought with any medium-to-large hawk in most of the US (esp. in the winter) should be Red-tailed Hawk. Start there, look that up and note some of the key features.

Then look up other hawks that are typically common in your area during the winter and look for some of the key features. Do this by clicking "Browse Taxonomy" -> "Hawks, kites, . . . " -> "Hawks, kites..." When you click on each bird's ID page, first notice the map on the right to make sure that where you are is in either the blue (winter) or purple (year-round) part of the map before even considering it.

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