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Juvenile Broad-winged hawk or red-shouldered hawk?


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Is this identifiable? Granted I'm notoriously bad at this ID because I don't see Red-shouldered too often, but it seems that all the field marks that are helpful to distinguish the two are obscured, and the back patterning seems in range for both species.

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I like Red-shouldered.  I think there's too much white on the back for Broad, and the upper breast streaking is too regular. Any chance  you have shots with better views of the tail?

EDIT: Although I agree with @Benjamin about possibly having to go with unidentifiable for this one.

Edited by Charlie Spencer
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17 minutes ago, Charlie Spencer said:

I like Red-shouldered.  I think there's too much white on the back for Broad, and the upper breast streaking is too regular. Any chance  you have shots with better views of the tail?

Unfortunately, this was the only accessible angle. So no more photos that reveal more details. And the reason I thought red-shouldered on the field was because of the slimmer look. But researching online says that a red-shouldered usually "shows bands in the secondaries of the folded wing". I don't see them in my photos, and hence my confusion with broad-winged.

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2 hours ago, nevsar said:

Unfortunately, this was the only accessible angle. So no more photos that reveal more details. And the reason I thought red-shouldered on the field was because of the slimmer look. But researching online says that a red-shouldered usually "shows bands in the secondaries of the folded wing". I don't see them in my photos, and hence my confusion with broad-winged.

I like Broad-winged for the reason you stated.

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My first impression was Red-shouldered based on structural cues, but the bird seems to have none of the definitive or usually useful ID characters of that species. Specifically, it's secondaries have nearly no pale banding, the throat seems entirely pale, and the tail does not look particularly long and lacks the usually distinct and narrow white banding. Incredibly, it also lacks the expansive and dark malar area typical of BOTH species, though usually larger and darker in Red-shouldered. The eye color is a wash.

Please keep that bird in MA and away from me!

  • Haha 1
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