Northern Goshawk Species Report

Northern Goshawk

Accipiter gentilis

The northern goshawk, is the largest member of the Accipiters or true hawks. There are 47 other species of Accipiters throughout the world with Cooper’s hawk and sharp-shinned hawks being the other species found in North America. The sub species Accipiter gentilis laingi is found in Canada.


The northern goshawk is a large hawk species. Its short, robust wings allow for rapid acceleration and the long tail allows for high manoeuvrability. The adult plumage is a dark brown to dark grey above, with a black cap and a signature white stripe above the eyes. The eyes are a bold reddish-orange colour. Female are normally larger than the male darker upper parts and bolder markings in the breast. The juveniles are brown on top, the breast has heavy streaking with a pale or white base. There are 8 subspecies of goshawk that are separated by size, plumage, colouration and patterning…

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