About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Sharp-shinned hawk diet

I don’t see this bird very often, so it’s a treat when he showed up in the tree outside my window today. The Sharp-shinned Hawk (Accipiter striatus) looks like a mini Cooper’s Hawk. They eat small songbirds like sparrows and small rodents, such as mice and voles, and an occasional moth or grasshopper.

Sharp-shinned Hawks are the smallest hawk in North America (males average 9 – 12 in. long and females 11 to 15 in). The name Sharp-shinned comes from the long and narrow appearance of the hawk’s legs just above its toes.

Adults have blue-gray backs, with narrow, horizontal red-orange bars on the breast and red eyes. Immature sharpies are mostly brown, with coarse vertical streaks on white belly and yellow eyes. Female Sharp-shinned Hawks are about a third bigger and heavier than males. Both the adults and young have broad dark bands across their long square-tipped tails.

They are seen year-round in mid-Michigan, but you will see more from August to November as the hawks from further north migrate through to the rest of the continental United States or migrate as far as southern Central America.

Related Articles:
Hawks at Feeders http://bit.ly/wzE35r
Can You Scare a Hawk Away? http://bit.ly/xpVocG
Michigan’s Top 20 Winter Backyard Birds http://bit.ly/ykIZ7L
Red-tailed Hawk Fun Facts http://bit.ly/AaK61o
Coopers's Hawk http://bit.ly/y5cNMz
Northern Goshawk http://bit.ly/xcEcW7

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