Raptors of Virginia Vultures The carrion eaters


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Raptors of Virginia


Vultures The carrion eaters



Black Vulture Black head, White outer wing patches, Short tail



Turkey Vulture Red head, Flies with wings held in a V, Trailing edge of wing is white. Long tail



Buteos Large conspicuous soaring hawks. Broad wings and broad, fanned tails. Often hunt from a perch in a dead snag or from power poles.



Red-tailed Hawk Red tail on adult. Large. Dark patagial marks on forewing. Immature birds usually have a dark belly band.







Rough-legged Hawk Artic Visitor. Dark solid belly band, dark wrist panels, Dark sub-terminal band in tail. Legs fully feathered. Courses over fields for mice.



Accipiters The secretive woodland hawks.







Northern Goshawk A large gray and white hawk. White eyebrow stripe



Falcons Fast bird eating raptors. They have pointed wings, Dark eyes with a malar stripe. Toothed beak. Long bird catching toes.





Merlin Winter visitor. Small. Slate colored. Weak malar stripe.



Peregrine Falcon Largest falcon in Virginia. Bold mustache. Blue-gray and white.



Harriers Coursing raptors. Hunt by sight and sound. Owl-like face.



Northern Harrier Coursing bird. Owl-like face. Long tail with a white rump patch.



Ospreys The fish hawk. World-wide distribution. Knobby feet to catch and hold onto fish. Dives into water feet first!



Osprey “Fish Hawk” Brown and white. Large. Bends wings at the elbows.



Eagles Largest raptors. Many types.



Bald Eagle



Golden Eagle - Rare visitor to the east. Large & powerful. Golden hackles.



Owls The nocturnal raptors.



Great Horned Owl – The largest owl in Virginia. Large ear tuffs. Broad chest. Yellow eyes.









Short-eared Owl Winter visitor. Small ear tuffs. Courses over fields in search of voles.



Long-eared Owl Winter visitor. Slim. Large ear tuffs. Prefers woods and field edges.



Northern Saw-whet Owl Our smallest visiting winter owl. No ear tuffs!




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