Oct 15, 2015 · Raptors are on the move. Now is a great time to get out and see the birds of prey as they migrate south for the winter (click here for a list of 10 awesome places to watch the spectacle).Seeing the birds on the wing is thrilling—particularly when there are large numbers of them—but it can also be frustrating to try and identify them at various angles and distances. A tropical species that barely crosses the border into Arizona and Texas, the Gray Hawk is an elegant, raincloud-gray raptor with neatly barred underparts. They spend their days gracefully soaring over open areas or perched in cottonwoods, willows, and mesquites along lowland streams. They patiently watch for lizards, then catch them with a swift dart toward the ground.
This long-winged raptor is predominantly grey or white with black shoulder patches, wing tips and eye stripe. The long falcon-like wings extend beyond the tail when the bird is perched. In flight, the short and square tail is visible and it is not forked as in the typical kites of the genus Milvus. When perched, often on roadside wires, it Class: Aves. Jul 22, 2014 · The Red-shouldered Hawk is slightly smaller than the more common Red-tailed Hawk. It is easily distinguishable by its red chest and shoulders, and by its starkly black and white striped wings and tail when in flight. More information about Red-shouldered Hawks can be found here: Wikipedia – Red-shouldered Hawk.
American Kestrels are a small raptor - about the size of an American Robin - and one of the few raptors where there is a color difference between the male and female. Both sexes have white cheeks with two black vertical lines, one in front of the eye and one at the ear. They have long slim pointed wings, a blue-grey cap and a long chestnut. Raptors, also referred to as "birds of prey", are a valuable resource to the State of California, and therefore all raptors are protected under State law (See Fish and Game Code, Sections 3503, 3503.5, 3505 and 3513, and California Code of Regulation, Title 14, Sections 251.1, 652 and 783-786.6).