A Ferruginous Hawk is fairly large bird of prey, about the size of a Red-tailed Hawk. The Ferruginous Hawk is also fairly closely related to that species, but there are still some fairly obvious differences between them.
Like all raptors, the Ferruginous Hawk has hooked bills and sharp talons on their feet. These features are used for dispatching prey after they have been seized in the claws. However, these hawks are also known for their extremely strong legs and feet which are designed to hold down their prey until they can be eaten.
No subspecies of this particular hawk have been recognized so far, however there are several geographical variations within this species - so it is possible that further research may show up more forms of this bird of prey.
Ferruginous Hawk subspecies are almost completely tied to habitats with high grass cover, but they will also use bushes and trees for nesting purposes. They are typically found in savannas and open areas of grassland, which is where they get their name from.
Larger prey is preferred, though these hawks will eat some reptiles and rodents as well. However, the majority of what they eat tends to be a lot bigger than themselves. Smaller mammals such as rabbits make up a large part of the diet for this type of hawk - sometimes over half of their food intake can be small rodents or other hefty items including ground squirrels, prairie dogs and pocket gophers.