White-tailed Hawk: Large hawk, dark gray upperparts and head, distinct brown wash on shoulders and back, and white rump. Breast is white; belly and undertail are white with inconspicuous, fine bars. Wings are dark gray above, paler below. Tail is white, broad black band near tip. Yellow legs, feet.
Range and Habitat
White-tailed Hawk: Ranges from south Texas to central Argentina; also occurs on some southern Caribbean islands. Preferred habitats include open, semi-open or thinly forested country.
The White-tailed Hawk has the widest latitudinal distribution (29°N to 44°S) of any Buteo and has successfully colonized several Caribbean islands.
Its white tail with a black band near the tip is unique amongst North American hawks.
Unlike most Buteo hawks, the wing feathers of a perched adult extend noticeably beyond the tail. A juvenile bird has a tail up to 15% longer than an adult, and its wing feathers barely surpass the tip of its tail.
A group of hawks has many collective nouns, including a "boil", "knot", "spiraling", "stream", and "tower" of hawks.