Dark Morph Rough-legged Hawk

Dark Morph Rough-legged Hawk

According to Sibley, dark morphs make up less than 10% of the population of Rough-legged Hawks found in the west. I don’t recall ever having seen one before, and I wasn’t exactly sure what I was looking at when I found this one. I was very happy that it posed for me for so long before launching.

This is the first roughie I’ve seen this fall. They pass through the Calgary area every fall and spring during the migration, and in milder years they are even known to overwinter here. Last year was such a nasty, cold winter that we hardly saw any at all. The spring was also very late this year, so when they did finally arrive they they didn’t stick around for long. We’ve been having a very nice (and late) fall so far and I’m very hopeful that we’ll have them here all winter this year!

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Sean lives and works in Calgary, Alberta, Canada and is surrounded by majestic views of the Rocky Mountains and constantly changing prairie landscapes. While focusing on the beauty of the prairies, including the sweeping horizons, the vegetation, and the birds and animals, the Eastern slopes of the Rocky Mountains are also a favorite place to wander and photograph.