Sharp-shinned Hawk

Accipter striatus
Sharp-shinned hawks have long tails and broad, short wings that provide maneuverability in their forest habitat/Photo Courtesy of Dr. Madeline Kalbach
Very thin lower unfeathered legs give this bird its name, sharp-shinned. This small raptor has a blue-gray upper body and white under-parts with rufous bars. The tail is squared and relatively long. It feeds its young by hovering and then kicking the food to the youngsters when they fly near. The Sharp-shinned Hawk likes to frequent backyards where feeders are present as their favorite prey is easy to find. It often perches in a nearby tree looking for tasty bird morsels that, when sighted, are snatched up by the Sharp-shin’s long spindly toes as the prey takes flight. The “sharpie” tends to eat only small birds, about the size of a bar of soap. It never eats carrion. Learn more about sharp-shinned hawks...

Facts About Sharp-shinned Hawk

Adult has dark red eyes

Small raptor

Passes food to its young on the wing

Nicknamed, “Sharpie”