It has an owl-like facial disk that is visible at close range. The base of the tail is white. Formerly known as the Marsh Hawk, the Northern Harrier is a slender, medium-sized raptor with a long, barred tail and distinctive white rump. Circus hudsonius northern harrier ric mcarthur rick mcarthur rondeau provincial park rondeau ric Northern harrier habitat must also be of suitable size. The under parts are white with brown streaks. Species; The Northern Harrier (Circus hudsonius), once known as the "Marsh Hawk", it is the only harrier seen in North America. They sometimes subdue larger animals by drowning them. Northern harrier hunting habitat is determined by several factors including proximity to the nest site and prey abundance and location. The Northern Harrier is a slim, medium-sized hawk with long, broad wings and long legs and tail. NORTHERN HARRIER – (Circus hudsonius) – (See images below) DESCRIPTION: The Northern Harrier is a hawk. There are two features that are useful in identifying this species: a facial ruff that gives them an owl-like appearance and a white rump that is visible when in flight. Easily recognized by its flying patterns, dihedral positioned wings, as it swoops and glides just over the tops of marshes and fields, falling upon their unsuspecting prey, unlike most raptors that dive from higher heights. The female is lighter brown. Shortcut to References. shrubs. Harriers are unusual in that there is a greater difference between male and female plumage than is … The population size has not been quantified, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). Shortcut to Action Plan Summary. The male is dark brown with a lighter circle around the face, with black wing tips. Despite the rarity of northern harrier as a nesting species, there are locations where harriers can be ob-served either in breeding, in migration, or in winter. This species looks surprisingly like an owl, because of their round face. In Washtenaw County, Michigan, territories averaged about 640 acres (Craighead and Craighead 1969). Northern Harrier – The northern Harrier is an incredibly common and widespread bird in North and Central America. Northern Harriers hunt mostly small mammals and small birds, but they are capable of taking bigger prey like rabbits and ducks. Northern Harrier (Circus cyaneus)Prepared by Kristi Cripe, California Department of Fish & Game . Clutch size and nest density can fluctuate between years, with larger clutches and more nests per area occurring in years of high prey abundance. They even hunt like owls, using their acute hearing to pinpoint the location of their prey. 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