WildlifeWildlife WatchingVermont Bird Records CommitteeRed-tailed Hawk

Vermont Rare Bird Reports 2019

Common NameRed-tailed Hawk
Scientific NameButeo jamaicensis
Type of ReportRare Species
Date of Observation01/14/2018
Number Observed1
Reporting Observer's NameRichard Littauer
Mailing Address10 Monsignor Crosby Ave Apt 4
Montpelier, VT 05602
United States
Map It
EmailEmail hidden; Javascript is required.
Date Completed04/26/2019
Latitude of Observation42.2525
Longitude of Observation-70.8209
Place NameHolly Hill Farm
Vermont eBird Checklist URLebird.org
Time of Day09:30 AM
Length of Time Observed5 minutes
Maximum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)150
Minimum Estimated Distance from Bird (in feet)80
Noteworthy Weather Conditions


Optical Equipment Used for Observation

60x scope. I don't know the make, it was my Uncle's. I took photos using my iPhone through the scope. Please see eBird checklist for photos; I was unable to download them, for some reason.

Observer’s Previous Acquaintance With This or Similar Species

I've seen many Red-tailed Hawks. I've only recently started looking for subspecies.

I certify that that attachments included with this report were captured during this observation event​​.
Description of Habitat

It was perched on a dead tree with a wide view over a yard, closed in by deciduous woods.

Behaviors Observed

Perched on top of a dead tree, around 40 feet up.

Description of Vocalizations

None noted.

Verbal Narrative & Description of Observation

I saw the hawk land, and spotted it in the scope. It stayed for around five minutes, during which I managed to get a photo. Much later, going through old photos, I realized that this could be an abieticola; at the time, I didn't know that there were subspecies.

Relative Size & Shape

Adult sized Hawk.


Brown. A small white supercilium, with a very minimal (if any) throat patch.

Feet & Bill


Upper Back

Not seen.

Lower Back & Rump

Not seen.


Brown, normal.

Breast, Belly, Flanks, Under Tail Coverts

Heavy dark dribbling on the belly.


Red. Not seen outside of sitting posture. Minimal banding.

IMPORTANT: What similar species were eliminated when making the identification and how was this bird different?

The main subspecies that would be similar to this in the area would be borealis, with a possible calourus. However, borealis does not have heavy dribbling on the belly, and generally has a very pronounced white throat patch. This bird did not.

Other Notes & Comments

Unknown. Please see eBird checklist for photos; I was unable to download them, for some reason.

This report was written from notes taken:Written from Memory