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Ridgway's hawk

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Title: Ridgway's hawk  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Buteoninae, Hispaniolan Ornithological Society, Buzzard, Wildlife Preservation Canada, Buteo
Collection: Birds of Haiti, Birds of Prey, Birds of the Dominican Republic, Buteo, Endemic Birds of the Caribbean
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Ridgway's hawk

Ridgway's hawk
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Falconiformes
(or Accipitriformes, q.v.)
Family: Accipitridae
Genus: Buteo
Species: B. ridgwayi
Binomial name
Buteo ridgwayi
(Cory, 1883)

Rupornis ridgwayi

Ridgway's hawk (Buteo ridgwayi) is a bird of prey in the family Accipitridae, which also includes the eagles, hawks and Old World vultures. Despite the name, this bird is a Buteo buzzard and not a true Accipiter hawk.

The Ridgway's hawk's original breeding range included Haiti and the Dominican Republic (which make up the island of Hispaniola) and some of the adjacent isles and keys. As of 2006, its only known population resides within Los Haitises National Park in the northeastern Dominican Republic, which is mostly covered by wet limestone forest.

This is a medium-sized, compact hawk, 36–41 cm long. The adult has brown-grey upperparts, greyish barred underparts with a reddish-brown wash, rufous-tinged thighs and a black-and-white barred tail. The male is greyer than the female. The legs and base of bill are yellow.

This bird feeds on small mammals, birds, lizards and snakes. It nests in the crowns of tall trees, with nest-building in February and March and egg-laying in March and April.

This bird is critically endangered due to clearance of its forest habitat and persecution by local farmers, who erroneously believe the species preys on domestic fowl, even though reptiles comprise up to 90% of its diet. It has an estimated population of 80–120 pairs,[2] making it, along with the bay-breasted cuckoo (Coccyzus rufigularis), the most threatened bird of Hispaniola.

This bird is named after the ornithologist Robert Ridgway.


  1. ^  
  2. ^ "Groups unite at last refuge for Ridgway's hawk". BirdLife International. 2006-01-11. Retrieved 2007-09-23. 
  • The Peregrine Fund. West Indies Project—Conservation Projects. Retrieved on 6 February 2007. Detailed info of on-going field studies.
  • Wildlife Conservation Canada. Threatened Species of the Dominican Republic Progress Report 2005.

External links

  • BirdLife Species Factsheet.
  • Ridgway's Hawk videos, images and sounds on the Internet Bird Collection
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