Dark Morph Swainsons Hawk

Dark Morph Swainsons Hawk

We see many different Hawks in the Calgary area at various times of the year. Rough-legged Hawks in the winter and early part of the spring, go up north for the summer, and then return in the fall. Swainsons Hawks and Red-tailed Hawks migrate from the South later in the spring, and stay until the late fall. In fact many Red-tails stay all year. There are lots of other species of Hawks and raptors as well, but these are the most common. And they usually show up in their most common color patterns.

But every once in awhile we’re lucky enough to see something different. I’ve seen very few Dark or Intermediate Morph birds, and the ones that I have seen have typically flown shortly after I arrived. Of course that’s true for most raptors, but the Light Morphs are far more common and therefore it’s more likely to find one that’s willing to cooperate…

So I was very happy to find this Dark Morph Swainsons Hawk, and even more so when I realized that it was going to help me out. All Hawks are beautiful to me, but there’s something a little extra special about Dark Morphs that makes me want to spend more time with them. Some birders may actually argue that this bird is really an Intermediate Morph, but that’s a pretty subjective decision and there aren’t very many experts out there that will actually take a stand one way or the other unless they actually saw the bird in person. Either way this bird is beautiful to me!

Dark Morph Swainsons Hawk

Dark Morph Swainsons Hawk

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Sean

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.