Variable (Red-backed) Hawk Buteo polyosoma polyosoma
(aka Red-backed Hawk Buteo polyosoma)

Chilean name: Aguilucho
Female Red-backed Hawk, Puyehue NP, Chile, November 2005 - click for a larger image Chile

The Variable Hawk is distributed in the central Andes and Pacific lowlands from Colombia to Tierra del Fuego. It seems to prefer more open habitat particularly scrubby areas where it hunts for its mainly mammal prey by hovering.

Variable Hawk, La Campana NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image Its plumage is highly variable which is why Jaramillo  and most other authorities call it "Variable Hawk". Its most constant feature is its white tail and black sub-terminal band. Males tend to have grey backs with largely grey or white underparts. The larger females typically have a rufous back but can have either white or rufous underparts.
Juvenile Variable Hawk, La Campana NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image Photos 3 and 4 show a juvenile.

There are recordings and a distribution map on xeno-canto.
Juvenile Variable Hawk, La Campana NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image
Variable Hawk, La Campana NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image
Variable Hawk, La Campana NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image
Variable Hawk, Fray Jorge NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image
Variable Hawk, Fray Jorge NP, Chile, January 2007 - click for a larger image
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