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Red-Shouldered Hawks - York, PA, USA - 6/25/22 (1 Viewer)

Hi All --

I'm still relatively new to posting here so please don't be shy about letting me know if I'm missing important details/asking my question in an unhelpful way.

There is a family of Red-Shouldered Hawks that nests near my house. I was lucky enough to get to watch the male do the sky dance during mating season (late March/early April). I hadn't seen them in a while but heard them calling as I was out on a walk on 6/25/22.

These 4 pictures are of 4 different birds (it was pretty cool to see them all at once from the same spot!). But none are the male that I have seen before. They all seem to have juvenile coloring.

I am wondering if it is likely that all 4 are offspring or if one of them might be the female/mother just without full adult coloring.

We have a pair of Cooper's Hawks that live right next door to us and in that pair, the male has full adult coloring but the female still has juvenile coloring. It made me wonder if that might be the same case here.
 

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How are you distinguishing males from females ( in RSH or in Cooper)?
With the Cooper's Hawks: during April they were mating about once an hour and I saw it regularly, so I saw able to tell from observing that activity which was the male (who has mature coloring) and which was the female (who has immature coloring). Also she is quite a bit larger than he is, which is another good clue for me -- but the main clue was watching them mate.

With the Red-Shouldered Hawks: I watched the male do the sky dance and observed his full mature coloring -- and none of the 4 I saw the other day had his coloring. No idea whether the young birds would be male or female, though.
 

birdmeister

Well-known member
United States
If you saw them from the same spot, it's very likely that all 4 Red-shoulders are offspring from one nest. Your photos all show the fresh buffy feather edges of juvenile birds.

Neat Cooper's Hawk photo, too! It indeed shows bluish adult feathers coming in on the back and tail, meaning this is a bird likely born last year.
 
If you saw them from the same spot, it's very likely that all 4 Red-shoulders are offspring from one nest. Your photos all show the fresh buffy feather edges of juvenile birds.

Neat Cooper's Hawk photo, too! It indeed shows bluish adult feathers coming in on the back and tail, meaning this is a bird likely born last year.
Thanks!

And yeah -- 2 were in the same tree and the two others were in different trees within about 30 feet.
 
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