Broad-winged Hawk

Buteo platypterus




Kites, Eagles and Hawks (Accipitridae)

Code 4


Code 6



Egg Color:

White to pale blue sometimes marked with brown

Number of Eggs:

2 - 4

Incubation Days:

28 - 31

Egg Incubator:

Both sexes

Nest Location:

30 - 50 feet above ground.

Nest Material:

Lined with inner bark strips and evergreen sprigs.





Broad-winged Hawk: Medium-sized hawk with dark brown, mottled upperparts and brown-barred, white underparts. Pale underwings with back margins are visible in flight. Tail is dark banded. Female is larger. Juvenile has narrower tail bands and brown-streaked underparts.

Range and Habitat

Broad-winged Hawk: Occurs north from British Columbia east to Nova Scotia, south through North Dakota, Minnesota, and Iowa to eastern Texas, through the Gulf coast to northern Florida; not found west of the Rockies. Preferred habitats include dense deciduous and mixed woodlands, often near openings created by roads, trails, or wetlands.

Breeding and Nesting

Broad-winged Hawk: Two to four white to pale blue eggs, sometimes marked with brown, are laid in a nest made of dead sticks and fresh sprigs, lined with bark chips, and built in the crotch of a deciduous tree. Sometimes renovates nests of other species. Incubation ranges from 28 to 31 days and is carried out by the female; male brings food to her during incubation.

Foraging and Feeding

Broad-winged Hawk: Diet consists of insects, amphibians, reptiles, mammals, and birds. Mammals are eaten entirely, while frogs and snakes are skinned, and birds are plucked. Hunts from a perch, swooping down to capture prey on the ground.


Broad-winged Hawk: Makes a thin, piercing whistle "peweeeeee," often given in flight, similar to the high-pitched whistle of an Eastern Wood-Pewee.

Similar Species

Broad-winged Hawk: Red-shouldered Hawk is larger with less rounded wings and rust-brown shoulders.


Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Back, rump, hindneck, wings, and crown.
Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X