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Swainson's Hawk

Swainson's Hawk - Bird Species | Frinvelis jishebi | ფრინველის ჯიშები

Swainson's Hawk

Overview
Swainson's Hawk: Large hawk, dark brown upperparts, white throat, rufous upper breast, pale buff underparts. Tail is gray with faint bars, dark terminal band, and white trailing edge. Yellow legs, feet. Alternates series of powerful deep wing beats with long glides. Soars on thermals and updrafts.

Range and Habitat
Swainson's Hawk: Breeds on the western plains of North America and southwest Canada from Texas to the Yukon. In the winter, most fly south to the pampas of Argentina, a distance of more than 5,000 miles. Preferred habitats include prairies, plains, and other wide-open ranges with minimal tree cover; commonly seen perched on poles or fence posts.

The Swainson’s Hawk is a large hawk that may also be known as the Locust Hawk or Grasshopper Hawk. Its preferred breeding grounds are located in open prairies and dry grasslands in western North America. Nests are made of sticks and placed in trees, shrubs or the edge of a natural cliff. During winter months, the Swainson’s Hawk migrates long distances to Argentina, and has been spotted as far away as Norway. This species prefers to dine on grasshoppers and locusts, but may also dine on small mammals and rodents. The conservation rating is currently Least Concern.

INTERESTING FACTS
The Swainson’s Hawk was first described in 1838 by Charles Bonaparte, French naturalist and ornithologist, and nephew of the Emperor Napoleon. It was named after William Swainson, a British naturalist. Chicks frequently kill and eat the youngest nestlings. The killing of siblings may be related to food availability, but the ultimate cause is unknown. It is known as the locust hawk, they will eat numerous amounts of these insects and in turn ingest a high amount of toxin, which causes thinning of egg shells. A group of hawks has many collective nouns, including a "boil", "knot", "spiraling", "stream", and "tower" of hawks.

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