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OcontoCo., WI
03 January 2001
Gary Fewless, Cofrin Arboretum Center for Biodiversity
Olympus CL 2500L digital camera

Red-tailed Hawk Starvation

In last week's photo a young Red-tailed Hawk took unusual risks to feed on an Eastern Cottontail close to buildings and people. The young hawk pictured here was not so lucky. It was found dead in the snow with no wounds or obvious damage and weighing much less than normal. It is likely this unfortunate bird died from starvation. Prolonged low midwinter temperatures require hawks to increase their calorie intake to survive, while the cold weather and deep snow make prey harder to locate and catch. As the young hawk lost weight it probably also became less able to catch prey.

© 2001-2004 The Cofrin Center for Biodiversity and the University of Wisconsin Green Bay, All Rights Reserved
Last updated on April 15, 2014