most common and adaptable of the three 'Accipiter' species over most
of North America is the Cooper's hawk (Accipiter cooperii).
They are fierce and maneuverable hunters of forest and woodland settings.
They also occur in gardens and around bird feeders, taking advantage
of concentrations of potential prey such as doves and finches. As with
all raptors, females are larger and heavier than males,
but otherwise are similar in appearance. Adults are bluish-gray in color
on their crown, back, rump, wings and tail, the latter marked with broad
black bands. They are reddish-brown from the throat to the belly, marked
with numerous and narrow white cross-bars. Their under-tail feathers
are white and fluffy, sometimes visible when perched. Adults also have
orange-to-red eyes. Immature birds are generally brown on the upper-parts
and whitish on the under-parts, marked with bold length-wise streaks.
Their eyes are bright yellow. As with other 'Accipiters', Cooper's hawks
fly with a combination of several fast wing-beats then a glide, repeated
as they go. Their rounded-tipped tail helps distinguish this species
from their smaller cousin, the sharp-shinned hawk (Accipiter striatus).
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