This year hasn’t provided me with as many opportunities to photograph Rough-legged Hawks as last winter did and before long these raptors will be heading to the high Arctic to find mates on their breeding grounds. I thought I would share some Rough-legged Hawk images taken the winter of 2011/2012 when they were very abundant today.
The young Roughy above had been perched on a Rabbitbrush high up on a hill and when it took off I was ready to photograph it as it came flying down the hillside.
This Rough-legged Hawk posed nicely on a post giving me a wonderful profile view of its face that showed the sharp little bill and the wonderful plumage patterns these hawks have on their backs.
What I like about this image is how it shows how long the wings are on Rough-legged Hawks, I also enjoy the rather direct look I appear to be getting from this raptor. I wish it had been perched on a natural feature but the hawk picked where it landed, not I.
The stuff on top of the post in this frame that looks like material from a steel wool pad is actually Bison fur with frost on it left there after a Bison used the post for a good scratch. The Rough-legged Hawk didn’t seem to mind the Bison fur or the lady with the long lens photographing it.
Rough-legged Hawks are winter wanders in my part of the country and I never know where I might find them. I’ll keep trying to photograph the Rough-legged Hawks that are still here before they head north.