Hawks, Eagles, and Falcons in Tennessee

Tennessee’s diverse habitats shape its hawks, eagles, and falcons community. The northern harrier, a low-flying hunter, frequents open fields. The majestic bald eagle thrives near its rivers and lakes, embodying ecological resilience. The peregrine falcon’s urban presence showcases adaptability. Woodlands shelter the sharp-shinned hawk, revealing the Tennessee’s rich avian tapestry and environment interplay.

Hawks Eagles and Falcons in Tennessee (TN)

List of Different Types of Hawks, Eagles, and Falcons in Tennessee


There are two types of eagles native to Tennessee.

  • Bald Eagle
  • Golden Eagle

As of 2012, Tennessee had over 175 nesting pairs of bald eagles; most remain in the state year-round. The migrant bald eagles arrive in late October to spend the winter. So the numbers peak from late January to mid-February.


  • Sharp-shinned Hawk
  • Cooper’s Hawk
  • Red-shouldered Hawk
  • Broad-winged Hawk
  • Red-tailed Hawk
  • Rough-legged Hawk
  • Ferruginous Hawk (Accidental)
  • American Goshawk (Accidental)
  • Swainson’s Hawk (Accidental)

Sharp-shinned hawks, the smallest in the state,  are more common in September and October during fall migration. Migrants join the resident population in winter, increasing their concentration in the state.



  • Osprey


  • Northern Harrier

Some of the best places to spot bald eagles during winter are Dale Hollow, Reelfoot, Watts Bar, Chickamauga, and Pickwick Lakes. Having said that, their sightings are pretty uncommon in the state. Though less common, golden eagles are seen in any state region from mid-November to early March. They are regulars at Tennessee NWR and Reelfoot Lake. Eagle-watchers can visit Douglas Lake to the east of Knoxville for a rewarding experience.

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