Sparrow Hawk

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Sparrow Hawk (Falco sparverius)

Sparrow Hawk

Length about 10 inches; one of the best known and handsmoest, as well as smallest, of North American hawks.  Breeds throughout the United States, Canada, and northern Mexico; winters in the United States and south Guatemala.

The sparrow hawk, a true falcon, lives in the more open areas and builds its nest in hollow trees.  It is often found where telephone and power poles afford it convenient perching and feeding places, and may be seen hovering high over its intended prey.  Its food consists of insects, small mammals, birds, spiders, and reptiles.  Grasshoppers, crickets, terrestrial beetles, and caterpillars make up considerably more than half its subsistence, while field mice, house mice, and shrews cover fully 25 percent of its annual supply.

 


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