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Hawk ID in Southern Illinois (1 Viewer)

PeteQuad

Well-known member
I took this photo back in February in the southern tip of Illinois. I was wondering if it was the Krider's variant of the Red-tailed Hawk.
 

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PeteQuad

Well-known member
What are you looking for in the highlights? The histogram does not show them as blown. Maybe this copy helps? I didn't spend a lot of time on developing it since it is not a great photo but I can do more if necessary.
 

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ceasar

Well-known member
I took this photo back in February in the southern tip of Illinois. I was wondering if it was the Krider's variant of the Red-tailed Hawk.

It could very well be a Krider's Red-tailed Hawk. Wheeler's range map places them in this area. The Hawk's head and scapulars fit the description from Wheeler's below as does its almost pure white breast and belly.

Wheeler defines "Krider's" as the "pale morph of B.j.borealis, the Eastern Red-tailed Hawk. See p.255 of the Eastern Edition of "Raptors of North America."

Describing the Head and Body of the Adult Kriders at p.255 he writes:

"HEAD-- In the purest form, the head is all white except for some dark streaking on the nape. Many birds have a small brown patch on the crown and a partial dark malar mark (these may be borealis/calurus intergrades). Throat is always white and unmarked and never has a dark collar. BODY (dorsal)--Dark brown back and forward and rear scapulars are edged with tawny-rufous. A large white mottled area covers the middle two-thirds of the scapulars. ........... ."

I think that the picture in post #1 shows these markings best.

Bob
 
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PeteQuad

Well-known member
The head is probably not white enough based on that, but the bird seemed off when I saw it (compared to typical Red-tailed Hawks), especially with the almost pure white front. The second is purposely underexposed to ensure nothing is hidden in the white.
 

ceasar

Well-known member
The head is probably not white enough based on that, but the bird seemed off when I saw it (compared to typical Red-tailed Hawks), especially with the almost pure white front. The second is purposely underexposed to ensure nothing is hidden in the white.



Interesting article by Jerry Liguori about Krider's and Harlan's Hawks (which show belly bands) here:

http://jerryliguori.blogspot.com/2014/01/kriders-is-morph-of-calurus.html

5 Pictures of Kriders show differing amounts of head whiteness.



Bob
 

PeteQuad

Well-known member
Thanks, that was very interesting. My photo, especially with the white undertail, looks like some of those photos, but according to that the range is all wrong. On page 68 of my Crossley guide there is a hawk (#3) that looks somewhat similar (lacking a belly band, although the tail is more reddish) that is listed as a "Fuertes", a breed I have not heard about before.
 

ceasar

Well-known member
Thanks, that was very interesting. My photo, especially with the white undertail, looks like some of those photos, but according to that the range is all wrong. On page 68 of my Crossley guide there is a hawk (#3) that looks somewhat similar (lacking a belly band, although the tail is more reddish) that is listed as a "Fuertes", a breed I have not heard about before.

The southern tip of Illinois is well within the Krider's winter range.

Wheelers range maps show the Kriders with a winter range corridor about 200 miles wide following the Mississippi river south to New Orleans beginning up around Des Moines, Ia on the west side of the river down to Houston, Texas. On the East side of the river from Southern Illinois down through Western KY and Tennessee and all of Alabama.

The Fuertes RT Hawk, B. j. furetesi , is a sub-species of the RTH found from SE Texas through Central and Western Texas and Northern Mexico. It has a light colored and sparsely patterned chest, belly and flanks and a red colored tail.

Bob
 
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PeteQuad

Well-known member
Ah ok then, this was really the very southern tip of Illinois at Horseshoe Lake Conservation Area. I am tempted to call this a Kriders as I am not seeing any other matching subspecies from the plumage. It struck me when I saw it, this very white raptor sitting there.
 

ceasar

Well-known member
I'll go along with "Krider's" too. I can't find any other reason to explain its pure white underparts.

Bob
 

TLeukering

Well-known member
This is a fairly typical Eastern (borealis) Red-tailed Hawk, adults of which at the mid-latitudes of the Lower 48 typically lack, or nearly so, a belly band. The head is far too dark for Krider's. Finally, Eastern Red-taileds usually look pale-tailed from below, because they are. The orangish coloration is primarily on the upper sides of the rectrices.
 

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