Red-tailed Hawk (Buteo jamaicensis)

Order: Accipitriformes
Family: Accipitridae
Genus: Buteo
Species: jamaicensis


This bird has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Fairhope, Alabama
Hereford, Arizona
Felton, California
Los Angeles, California
Marina, California
Martinez, California
Menifee, California
Mission Viejo, California
Rancho Mirage, California
San Diego, California (4 reports)
Santa Barbara, California
Daytona Beach, Florida
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Mims, Florida
New Port Richey, Florida
Panama City, Florida
Trenton, Florida
Austell, Georgia
Bainbridge, Georgia
Brinson, Georgia
Montpelier, Idaho
Lombard, Illinois
Niles, Illinois
Westchester, Illinois
Coatesville, Indiana
Yale, Iowa
Benton, Kentucky
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Cadiz, Kentucky
Ewing, Kentucky
Hebron, Kentucky
Melbourne, Kentucky
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Vacherie, Louisiana
West Monroe, Louisiana
Oakland, Maryland
Wakefield, Massachusetts
Belleville, Michigan
Flint, Michigan
Jackson, Michigan
Paw Paw, Michigan
Le Center, Minnesota
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Golden, Mississippi
Cole Camp, Missouri
Conway, Missouri
Hermann, Missouri
Saint Louis, Missouri
Washington, Missouri
Lincoln, Nebraska
Warner, New Hampshire
Burlington, North Carolina
Clyde, North Carolina
Elizabeth City, North Carolina
Cincinnati, Ohio
Corning, Ohio
North Ridgeville, Ohio
Ravenna, Ohio
Sand Springs, Oklahoma
Bend, Oregon
Gold Hill, Oregon
Portland, Oregon
Roseburg, Oregon
Salem, Oregon
Downingtown, Pennsylvania
Gardners, Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Whitehall, Pennsylvania
Bluffton, South Carolina
Wellford, South Carolina
Austin, Texas
Corsicana, Texas
Fort Worth, Texas
Red Oak, Texas
San Antonio, Texas
Edinburg, Virginia
Portsmouth, Virginia
Walkerton, Virginia
Stanwood, Washington
Vancouver, Washington
Chilton, Wisconsin
Show all

Members' Notes:


On May 16, 2021, Rise22 from Roseburg, OR wrote:

We have them here in Oregon. Yes, they do get some birds, but everyone has to eat, right? There is a pair scoping out the big trees on the upper part of our property...they very well might nest there this year.


On Apr 13, 2021, jackiescompost from Mission Viejo, CA (Zone 10a) wrote:

To 006966 in Bluffton... I know how you feel. While the hawk is a beautiful and impressive bird, I hate it when they visit my yard for the bird buffet. Because of a recent outbreak of pine siskin salmonellosis, we took down all of our feeders for the recommended time. Before that, we had a Red-tailed Hawk frequenting our feeders for birds. During this time, the red-tailed hawk has left our feeders for better hunting elsewhere. The last straw for me was when I heard a very loud bang on our sliding glass door where at its base, I found a stunned red-tailed hawk with a wide-eyed, terrified dove captured in its talons. I banged hard on the glass door and the hawk immediately took off with its catch. We took down all our feeders because of this and because of the pine siskin threat. Th... read more


On Mar 17, 2021, EddieReese from Sand Springs, OK wrote:

In Oklahoma the Red tail hawk is in abundance.
Note: in the movies or commercials when ever they show an eagle or vulture the call of the bird you hear is actually the call of the red tail hawk. It is never the call of the bird being shown. The eagle call is unimpressive and the vulture has no call. But the red tail call is majestic and mighty sounding, so there you go. I'm a wildlife biologist and nature center administrator so I notice things like this.


On Mar 8, 2021, 006966 from Bluffton, SC wrote:

I'm sorry, but I am not a fan of the red tailed hawk. They have taken several red cardinals while feeding at my bird feeders over the years. It is very sad to watch and hear the cardinals screeching as they are carried away by the hawk!
Wish there was something I could do to stop this but I guess it's just the survival of the fittest.
I live in Bluffton, SC.


On Apr 3, 2016, AFinSD from San Diego, CA wrote:

Have seen this bird in various nature preserves and other locations in San Diego. They are strong fliers, and whenever I see them in the sky, I cannot help but be impressed.


On Mar 1, 2016, CrystalCat from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

We have these beautiful birds flying around us all the time. I live around Beverlywood,(Los Angeles) California


On Mar 10, 2013, HeidiKHandmade from Vancouver, WA wrote:

A common sight by high-traffic areas in trees, on light poles, and even on power lines, looking for lunch. Dramatic looking bird, distinctive with its red tail-feathers. I love to see them flying in pairs.


On Oct 4, 2010, bonehead from Cedarhome, WA (Zone 8b) wrote:

A common sight for us.


On Sep 4, 2009, natureluvver from Philadelphia, PA wrote:

Philadelphia was given a real treat this year by having 2 red-tailed hawks building a nest on a window ledge of a Science Museum in the middle of the city. They laid 3 eggs that hatched, and the nestlings successfully fledged in June. The museum set up a video camera aimed at the nest from the time the first egg was laid until the end of June. Anyone watching on their computer literally had a bird's-eye view of everything that goes on in the red-tail's nest by light of day, even the parents bringing "prey" and feeding the nestlings. We even saw the eggs hatching! Hopefully, the 2 parents will come back next year. Absolutely fascinating.


On Feb 11, 2009, MichaelZ from Portland, OR (Zone 8a) wrote:

I have a pair that hunts in my part of the city and they are great to watch. And, it is fun to watch them battle with the crows guarding their own nests. A hawk landed across the street from me one spring day and I swear crows came flying from miles away to deal with the threat. It was a Hitchcockian experience.



On Feb 9, 2009, crengle62 from Marina, CA (Zone 10b) wrote:

Ilike them they eat vermin (rats etc) altho them and the crows don't get along lol


On Feb 8, 2009, Malus2006 from Coon Rapids, MN (Zone 4a) wrote:

Seemly like the population of red tail hawk in the Twin Cities have make a big jump in recent years - now can be seen pretty much all year round - they loves large open spaces and roadside - mainly commonly near intersections with a small patch of wild forest nearby. Often I have seen them perching in trees - usually the most exposed tree, sometimes lightposts and once in a while signs and lower in trees - can be seen by their large size and white breast when driving. In fact for me, driving is the best way to see those raptors. Their huge size (they are the biggest of all the hawks in the region - only eagles, some owls, and vultures are bigger) make them a easy id. Only the migrantary and uncommon red shoulder hawk comes closer to size but like I said they are uncommon to rare in the are... read more