|Ferruginous Hawk flying near Cambria, San Luis Obispo County, California, USA. - (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Ferruginous hawks also stay in uncultivated pastures on prairies and grasses in western North America, however, they spend most their time in arid and semiarid grassland regions. Ferruginous hawks avoid high elevations, forest interiors and places like narrow canyons and cliff areas.
During 1900, ferruginous hawks nested through south and central Alberta, but in 1980, the ferruginous hawk was designated threatened. Today it is still designated vulnerable by the Endangered Wildlife in Canada and the population has declined in most areas in the US except California. The main reason for their endangerment is the disappearance of native short grass that hawks use for hunting.
Ferruginous hawks like to hunt gophers, however, hawks in Alberta eats mice and white-jack rabbits. Hunting generally occurs in the early morning and the late afternoon. They can attack from short distances and strike prey on the ground, use aerial hunting from about 300 feet, or just fly after prey from a perch. They do not hunt very well on croplands because their large wings and size prevent them from effective maneuver among grains on the ground.
Hawks build their nest in trees including cottonwoods, willows and swamp oaks along the waterways. which occurs in mid-March in Colorado and Kansas but they will nest on the ground if necessary. The male hawk collects most of the material such as grass, twigs, old bones and crow or horse dung, while the female arranges it into a nest, which they use year after year. They lay their eggs between February and July and their nest usually contains three or four white eggs.