Primary Reference Resources:

"Audubon Field Guide to the Mid-Atlantic States" by Peter Alden and Brian Cassie

Patuxent Bird Identification InfoCenter

Bird Watcher's Digest

Howard County Bird Club




Cooper's Hawk (Accipter cooperii): Top photo adult. Lower photo juvenile. Very similar in appearance to the Sharp-shinned hawk but markedly larger when comparing sex to sex (difficult). Two possible differences: The Cooper's has a light patch on the nap of the neck and rounded tail feathers. The Sharp-shinned has a dark neck and has flat tail feathers. Short, rounded, broad wings designed for chasing song birds through thick forests. Frequents backyard bird feeders. Photo by Anita Mueller.




Bald Eagle (Haliaeetus leucocephalus): Soon to come off of the endangered species list. A sighting of this majestic raptor is enough to get my heart pounding. Upper photo: This one was initially perched in a tree near the Conestoga Trail, Holtwood Recreation Area, PA until we spooked it. Second photo by Anita Mueller.


Black Vulture (Coragyps atratus) : Several were living in this abandoned farm house in the Bull Run Mountain Conservancy, VA.


Red-tailed Hawk - immature (Buteo jamaicensis): Length 22 inches with a 50 inch wing span. Young Buteo species are hard to tell apart. To further complicate things the Red-tailed has a dark and light morph. Both adult morphs have red tails (appear pink/orange from underneath). Rodents, small mammals main prey. Often mobbed by other birds. Photo by Anita Mueller.


Turkey Vulture (Cathartes aura) w/chick living in a hollowed out tree. Location: Flag Ponds Nature Park, MD. Photo by Ken Clark.

A better view of a Turkey Vulture on a chimney. Photo by Anita Mueller.


Broad-winged Hawk - juvenile (Buteo platypterus): L = 15 inches. WS = 34 inches. Photo by Anita Mueller.


Osprey (Pandion haliaetus) with chicks: Expert fishermen. Locaction: Jug Bay/Patuxent River Park. Photo by Ken Clark. Perched Osprey by Anita Mueller.


American Kestrel (Falco sparverius): In the falcon family. 8.5 to 11 inches in length. Male (above) has rufous chest. Female's chest is buff with brown spots. Juveniles similar to females.

Barred Owl (Strix varia): 21inches long. Nocturnal. Roost in trees during the day. Photo by Anita Mueller.



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