Harris’s Hawk (Parabuteo unicinctus)
A distinctive raptor of the desert southwest, the Harris’s hawk are social birds and one of the only two raptor species that engage in cooperative hunting. Their naturally social behavior has made them a popular choice among falconers.
Their hunting tactic is similar to those used by wolves and lions, where some group members ‘flush’ out their prey and chase them towards other hunters in the group. This strategy increases the Harris’s hawk hunting success and thus leading to higher survival rates in the wild.
The Harris’s hawk will prey on a variety of small mammals, lizards, and even other birds. They can be found year-round in scrubland and deserts of southwestern United States, much of northern and central Mexico, as well as parts of South America. Next time you see a group of Harris’s hawk, keep an eye out for their ‘back-standing’ behavior, where one or more hawks will stand on top of each other!
Lindsay’s Harris’s Hawk
Our Harris’s Hawk is Saguaro! Saguaro came to us from South Carolina where he was raised by parents that are both animal ambassadors. Since the Harris’s Hawk is not typically present in California, Saguaro is an excellent ambassador for his species. Its name pays homage to the Saguaro Cactus, one of the Harris’s hawk’s preferred perching plant in the southwest. Join us in welcoming Saguaro to Lindsay, his new forever home!