Red-tailed Hawk

Red-tailed Hawk - Original.jpg

This is an original pen-and-ink illustration. It is also available as a digitally "painted" version, and as a color infographic.


  • Class: Aves

  • Order: Accipitriformes

  • Family: Accipitridae

  • Genus: Buteo

  • Species: B. jamaicensis


This illustration of a Red-tailed Hawk was completed on February 18, 2017. While a see a resident pair daily around my home in Los Angeles, this illustration is based upon a close-up photo of a cooperative subadult Red-tailed Hawk that I took while on vacation in southern Baja. The feathering was extremely time consuming, primarily because the reference bird had worn plumage resulting in uneven feather shapes.


The Red-tailed Hawk is perhaps the most familiar and widespread bird of prey in North America. It ranges from northern Canada to Panama, and is found in a wide variety of habitats including large cities, suburban parks and gardens, deep coniferous forest, and tropical savannas and open woodlands. Throughout its range, its plumage is highly variable, including standard color morphs that are nearly all white and nearly all black. The brick red coloration of the tail for which it is named is only found in adult birds.


9 inches X 12 inches


  • Pen and ink on paper (Staedtler pigment liner on Strathmore medium drawing paper)
  • Colored in Corel Painter Essentials 5.