Length, wingspan: 16.5″, 31″
What they eat: Carnivorous (birds, rodents)
Plants that attract: Woodlands, densely-planted areas, bird activity at feeding stations
Where they nest: Tall coniferous trees, some deciduous trees such as oaks
My observations: Cooper’s hawks are slightly larger than Sharp-shinned hawks and smaller than Northern Goshawks, all of which are Accipiters. We see Cooper’s year-round in our garden. They like to cruise through it every so often, being attracted to all of the activity at our bird feeders. They eat small to medium-sized birds as well as small rodents and lead pretty secretive lives. As immature birds, they have golden eyes, but once mature, those eyes take on a bit of an eery look since they turn red. But it’s a treat seeing them in the garden and I’m always tickled when they land in a nearby tree so I can secretly snap a photo or two of them!
In this video, you can watch a Cooper’s hawk looking around for potential prey while sitting in one of our locust trees:
Back to My Backyard Birds