Northern Goshawk,
Accipiter gentilis

Facts and Information



Northern Goshawk, or possibly a Cooper's Hawk. The two hawks are so similar that I can't make a definitive ruling!

The Goshawk is part of a group of hawks known as accipiters, with short, rounded wings and long tails, an adaptation for maneuvering through trees where they both live and nest. Female Goshawks, growing to a length of about 25", are larger than the males, which are up to about 22".

They hunt for birds and mammals, using their ability to fly quickly through dense forested areas.

Cooper's Hawk, San Juan Island

This bird is one of 2 immature hawks that hatched in a nest next to our driveway. The parents built the nest near the top of a fir tree and we got to watch the whole process, including feeding the young, and later watching the young practice flying and catching prey. This photo shows one of the immature hawks hanging around our driveway, only about 30 feet from the house, giving us a great view of their goings on. This bird and its sibling would throw a fir cone around between them, doing what looked to us an awful lot like practicing catching prey. They would throw the cone and then jump over and pounce on it, gripping it in their feet.

Jump over to any of the other bird pages: Belted Kingfisher, Common Raven, Coopers Hawk, Great Blue Heron, American Bald Eagle, Double Crested Cormorant, Pileated Woodpecker, Red-tailed Hawk, Red-winged Blackbird, Rufous Hummingbird, Sea Hawk, Yellow Rumped Warbler, Great Horned Owl, Wild Turkey, Trumpeter Swan.

Return to American Goldfinch from Northern Goshawk, OR
Return to Simply San Juan.

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