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Birds of Prey

The term “birds of prey” applies to several families whose members have exceptional vision for locating prey while in flight and strong talons and hooked upper beaks for handling prey once they find it. Winnebago County birds of prey include hawks, falcons, harriers, eagles, ospreys, kites, vultures and owls. Their diets include small mammals, other birds, fish, reptiles, insects and carrion. Except for the owls, most are primarily active during the day.

Accipiters

Accipiters are long-tailed woodland hawks with short, rounded wings, which give them greater maneuverability in the woods. They are quick in flight and often prey on smaller birds.
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Buteos

Buteos are large hawks with broad wings and wide, rounded tails. Birders often see them circling high overhead.
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Eagles

Need some main text for eagles.
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Falcons

Falcons are streamlined birds with pointed wings and medium-long tails, which allow them to reach speeds near 200 mph when power-diving onto prey.
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Harriers

Harriers are slim hawks with long wings and long tails. The state-endangered northern harrier is the only Winnebago County hawk in this group.
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Kites

Kites are graceful, falcon like birds with pointed wings.
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Ospreys

Although smaller than bald eagles, ospreys are similar in that they primarily eat fish and live in the same habitats.
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Owls

Owls are nocturnal. They typically live in woodlands and thickets and along wooded streams. People are most likely to hear owls at night from late winter to early spring but may see them during the day.
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Vultures

Although not necessarily impressive-looking on the ground, with a wingspan nearing 6 feet, a circling Turkey Vulture is a striking sight overhead.
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