[Ontbirds] Interesting Red-tailed Hawk at Long Point SMLO

Chris Cheatle cmcheatle at gmail.com
Thu Dec 22 17:54:55 EST 2016

On Monday while observing the reported Smith's Longspur just north of Long
Point, in the company of Henrique Pacheco and several other birders, an
interesting Red-tailed Hawk was observed doing a single pass-over of the

The bird was completely hooded and dark breasted. On site, it was
identified as a calurus Western Red-Tailed Hawk.

Knowing his interest in Western Red-tails, I sent the photos to Jon Ruddy,
who in turn sent the pics to several leading raptor experts including Jerry
Liguori and Brian Sullivan.

Their feedback is that there are inconsistencies in plumage for a calurus,
and that the bird may be a more interesting colour morph of a different

Anyone observing the SMLO, or birding in the general area around Long Point
should keep an eye open for this bird in case it has a territory in the
area. Any photos that can be obtained in particular would be appreciated
for upload to Ebird.

Here is the EBird report I submitted :

As well an album with more pics :

The subspecies ID could not be 100% confirmed by the experts, but if
additional pics can be obtained, perhaps it is possible.

Happy holidays and birding to all.
C.Cheatle, Hamilton

More information about the ONTBIRDS mailing list