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ID Help: Hawk/Eagle (1 Viewer)

Scarletmacawdad

Well-known member
Hi everyone,

Apologies if this is the wrong forum. I will learn.

ID help for Balona Wetlands, SoCal.

(I am mega novice.)

First soaring then diving -fast - hawk / eagle, about 2-3 feet, and here's the hard part for me: large white spots on the top of each wing near the ends

eBird says the following are candidates, but I can't place the white spots.

Osprey
White-tailed Kite
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper's Hawk
Sharp-shinned/Cooper's Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk
Swainson's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Ferruginous Hawk
 

etudiant

Registered User
Supporter
Hi everyone,

Apologies if this is the wrong forum. I will learn.

ID help for Balona Wetlands, SoCal.

(I am mega novice.)

First soaring then diving -fast - hawk / eagle, about 2-3 feet, and here's the hard part for me: large white spots on the top of each wing near the ends

eBird says the following are candidates, but I can't place the white spots.

Osprey
White-tailed Kite
Northern Harrier
Sharp-shinned Hawk
Cooper's Hawk
Sharp-shinned/Cooper's Hawk
Red-shouldered Hawk
Swainson's Hawk
Red-tailed Hawk
Ferruginous Hawk

Hi Scarletmacawdad,
You have a privileged location, those wetlands have real variety.
In the specific case you asked about, I'd first wonder whether the birds you were asking about were indeed among the raptors listed.
Raptors rarely soar and dive, except during courtship, it uses too much energy and this is not the breeding season.
Gulls however are superb fliers and total showoffs, they will do exactly what you saw and they do have large white spots on the outer edges of their wings.
Note that gulls are raptors in all but the name, one of the Great Black Backs at Cape May was given the name 'Cooter' because of his habit of killing Coots and eating them.
 

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