Rough-legged Hawk

Peak Migration: mid Oct – Nov
Record Daily High: 204 on 10 Nov 1963
Record Seasonal High: 1,026 in 1994

Origin of name: The feathers on its legs and feet give the limbs a “rough” appearance.

Other names: Black hawk, mouse hawk, squalling hawk.

Hunting habits: Preys on mice, lemmings, pocket gophers, cutworms and caterpillars, and small to game-sized birds. Usually takes prey on the ground.

Nesting habits: Nests on open tundra and mountainsides. When lemmings are abundant, lays 5-7 eggs, other years only 2-3 eggs. Female does most of the incubating, which takes a month. The young leave the nest about 41 days after hatching.

Length: 46-59 cm

Wingspan: 122-143 cm

Weight: Ranges from 745 to 1380 grams; females are generally larger than males. In the world of raptors, females are bigger, stronger, and usually more aggressive than males.

Life expectancy: One banded bird was shot when 6 years, 9 months old. Another lived 17 years, 9 months.

Image Credits: Michael Furtman