[CT Birds] Red-tailed Hawk and Red-shouldered Hawk, Part IV

Stephen Broker ls.broker at cox.net
Mon Jan 19 11:37:31 EST 2015

Now, let’s check some of the published literature.  The Atlas of Breeding Birds of Connecticut (atlas years 1982-1986) states, “This common hawk of Connecticut’s wetlands is distributed patchily within the state.  Connecticut’s Red-shouldered Hawk population is largely migratory, although some individuals may winter in the state.  Pairs usually return to the same territory year after year, repairing a previously used nest or constructing a new one nearby.  This species has been included on the American Birds Blue List since 1972 because of nationwide concern over declining numbers.  Although population levels in Connecticut are apparently stable, the Red-shouldered Hawk is included on Connecticut’s list of Species of Special Concern.” (Bevier, ed. 1994).  The Atlas species account, written by Dwight Smith and Buzz Devine, continues, “Although the Red-shouldered Hawk was recorded in all regions of the state, they were most prevalent in the western and eastern interior sections and only slightly less widespread through the central lowlands and near the coast.  Despite this statewide distribution, the choice of nest sites within each region indicates an intolerance of human activity and selection of undisturbed wetland.”  The Atlas species account for Red-tailed Hawk, also by Smith and Devine, states:  “The atlas results indicate that the Red-tailed Hawk is the most widely distributed bird of prey breeding in Connecticut.  Although some allowance must be made for the ease of finding these conspicuous soaring and perching buteo hawks, they are undoubtedly numerous and widespread.”  To be continued.

Steve Broker


More information about the CTBirds mailing list