Chicken hawks

Thanks to hubby for bringing this to my attention. I always found it amusing when someone who didn't support the war in Iraq called someone who did support the war a chicken hawk. Regardless of how the term came to be applied to war supporters I always wondered if these people realised that chicken hawks were predators. These hawks got their common name because they could decimate a farmer's flock of chickens with little effort. How sad is it that I, who grew up in the city, actually knew what a chicken hawk really was. Well it seems that some war supporters have taken notice of the irony and decided to embrace the term. A chicken hawk is after all a fierce predator that strikes fear in the heart of many a chicken.
And why the chicken hawk? When we looked into it, it turns out that the chicken hawk is a pretty impressive predator. It's the largest of its family. This species vigorously defends its territory, getting even more aggressive when the conditions get harshest. It adapts to all climates. Most impressively, it feeds on chickens, mice, and rats.

Make of
that what you will.
For biology geeks like myself, it might interest you to know that the common name chicken hawk is most often applied to 3 species of hawks from the family Accipitridae. They are the Cooper's Hawk, the Sharp-shinned Hawk, and the Red-tailed Hawk.

Hawk facts
Cooper's Hawk
Red-tailed hawk Buteo jamaicensis
Red-Tailed Hawk
HAWKS & EAGLES Accipitridae

Red tail hawk snacking on a squirrel.
Cooper's hawk snacking on a small bird.
Sharp shinned hawk juvenile female (there weren't any pictures of this species feeding).


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