White-tailed Hawk Geranoaetus albicaudatus

  • Order: Accipitriformes
  • Family: Accipitridae
  • Polytypic: 3 subspecies
  • Authors needed...
Sections

Multimedia

Powered by Macaulay Library and eBird

Photos from this Account

Adult light morph

In flight note short, white tail with dark band near the tip and broad wings that are pointed at the tips. Light morph birds have dark primaries, white inner wing linings, and a white belly.

Adult light morph

Perched birds show a gray head, white belly, and dark wings with a chestnut patch on the shoulder. The wings extend beyond the tail when perched.

Immature

When perched, note that the wings extend beyond the tail. Immature birds are dark above with a white breast patch.

Immature

Immature birds in flight have a white tail, a dark head, a white throat, and dark inner wing linings. Acquires adult plumage after 4 years.

Juvenile

Juveniles have dark inner wing linings and a white tail that is often longer than in adults.

Juvenile

Often soars in wide lazy circles with its wings held in a V or dihedral. Adults are dark above with chestnut shoulders and its namesake white tail marked with a black terminal band.

Juvenile

Juveniles are dark overall with a white throat patch and dark belly. The tail is very faintly barred.

Immature

On immature birds in flight note the white breast patch and pale tail.

Habitat

Found in open country, primarily savanna, prairie, and dry areas with mesquite, cacti, and bushes; very rarely in open forest.

Recommended Citation

White-tailed Hawk (Geranoaetus albicaudatus), In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. retrieved from Neotropical Birds Online: https://neotropical.birds.cornell.edu/Species-Account/nb/species/whthaw