The red-tailed hawk occupies a wide range of habitats and altitudes including deserts, grasslands, coniferous and deciduous forests, agricultural fields, and urban areas. This is the most widespread and familiar large hawk in North America, bulky and broad-winged, designed for effortless soaring. An inhabitant of open country, it is commonly seen perched on roadside poles or sailing over fields and woods.
Most adult red-tails have a dark brown nape and upper head which gives them a somewhat hooded appearance, while the throat can variably present a lighter brown “necklace”. The back is usually a slightly darker brown than elsewhere with paler scapular feathers, ranging from tawny to white, forming a variable imperfect “V” on the back. The tail of most adults, which of course gives this species its name, is rufous brick-red above with a variably sized black subterminal band and generally appears light buff-orange from below.
Because they are so common and easily trained as capable hunters, the majority of hawks captured for falconry in the United States are red-tails. Falconers are permitted to take only passage hawks (which have left the nest, are on their own, but are less than a year old) so as to not affect the breeding population.
The Bald Eagle sound we hear in movies is, like most things, a result of movie magic. In real life, they should sound like they are chirping with something stuck in their throat, like a dolphin. The real sound is attributed as the red-tailed hawk.