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Archive for May 14, 2011

Red-tailed Hawk Nestlings

Nesting red-tailed hawks typically have two or three eggs which hatch after being incubated by both parents for about a month. The nestlings are altricial – born blind and naked, totally dependent upon their parents. Within days they are covered with downy white feathers. The female parent broods (sits on the young, warming them with her body heat) the chicks for the next month or so, while the male provides most of the food for her and their nestlings. Ten to fifteen times a day he arrives at the nest with prey that initially is torn into small pieces by the female before she feeds her young. In about seven weeks, the young will fledge, but the parents continue to provide them with food for the next two months.