I was driving the auto tour road at the Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge in Oklahoma when I spotted several Vultures on the road ahead. I approached slowly and spotted an immature Red-tailed Hawk feeding on an animal carcass in a ditch full of water. I was able to park and get lots of photos. I couldn’t see what animal this hawk was feeding on, but it was likely a small mammal.

Red-tailed Hawk On Animal Carcass

Red-tailed Hawk On Animal Carcass

Red-tailed Hawks are common birds of prey throughout North America. They are typically found in open areas, such as fields, forests, and parks. They are carnivores and their diet consists of a variety of small mammals, birds, and reptiles.

Red-tailed Hawks are an important part of the ecosystem. They help to control populations of small mammals and birds. They are also a popular bird for birdwatchers.

I was lucky to see this immature Red-tailed Hawk feeding on an animal carcass. It was a beautiful sight and I’m glad I was able to capture it on camera.

Red-tailed Hawks Facts:

  1. Red-tailed Hawks are known to hunt in a variety of ways, including soaring and searching for prey from above, perching and waiting for prey to come into view, and even hunting on foot by stalking their prey.
  2. One unique aspect of their diet is their ability to take down larger prey which they can do by swooping down from above and using their sharp talons to deliver a powerful blow.
  3. Red-tailed Hawks have also been known to scavenge for food, particularly during the winter months when prey may be scarce. They will feed on carrion, including roadkill and other dead animals.
  4. Some Red-tailed Hawks have been observed using urban environments to their advantage, feeding on pigeons and other small birds in cities and suburban areas.
  5. The Red-tailed Hawk’s diet can vary depending on its geographical location and the time of year, with some populations specializing in certain prey types or relying heavily on seasonal food sources such as migratory birds or fish.

Gear Used:

  • Camera: Canon EOS R7
  • Lens: Canon RF 100-500 mm F4.5-7.1 L IS USM


I was photographing the Red-tailed Hawk from inside my pickup. I had a beanbag draped over the open window to support my camera and lens.

  • Location: Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge (Oklahoma)
  • Date and Time Taken: March 28, 2023 (09:45 A. M.)
  • Exposure Mode: Manual
  • Aperture: f7.1
  • Shutter speed: 1/500
  • ISO: 1250 (Auto)
  • Exposure Compensation: -1/3
  • Focal Length: 500 mm

Related Posts:

Red-tailed Hawk Standing In Grass

Young Red-tailed Hawk Stretching Wings