Swainson's Hawk
Buteo swainsoni

1994 - 2016 |  In Loving Memory of Alaska

Alaska was a male Swainson’s Hawk who came to HawkWatch International in 1994 after being shot in northern Utah (near Paradise).  The injury resulted in part of his left wing being removed, including the primary feathers needed to fly.  He was a full adult when he was shot so he was at least 2 years old in 1994, placing him at approximately 24 years of age at death.  Alaska was named because Swainson's Hawks may migrate to Argentina from as far north as Alaska making a yearly roundtrip of approximately 14,000 miles.  During his 22 years of tenure as an Ambassador to his species, he touched thousands of individuals, sharing his story and teaching about the harms of poaching and illegal shooting of hawks.  Alaska had a wonderful temperament and did not mind people and crowds (not the case with some of our education birds).  He will be missed by the many staff and volunteers who knew him well.  We hope he finds new joy as he soars high and long in the eternal blue skies above.

Conservation Issues for Alaska: Hunting Raptors is Illegal  and Flight Mechanics