Have you seen this missing red-tailed hawk?

Cloud, the red-tailed hawk, has gone missing from Brisley in Norfolk. 

Cloud, the red-tailed hawk, has gone missing from Brisley in Norfolk. - Credit: Carol George

An appeal has been made to help find an American bird of prey that has gone missing in mid-Norfolk.

Carl George said the red-tailed hawk called Cloud has been missing from his home in Brisley, between Dereham and Fakenham, since December 30.

Mr George said: "Cloud is a female red-tailed hawk and she's about 12-and-a-half. We've had her since she was about nine weeks old. She could cope in the wild but we'd like to have her back to make sure she's OK.

"It's like with any other pet, you get attached to them."

Mr George, who is involved in bird and wildlife rescue and keeps a number of animals, said Cloud was kept in an aviary in his garden, and she escape at about 2pm when he was inside the aviary cleaning it out.  

He said: "She was hanging around where we lived for two or three days, and we had a couple of sightings not far from the village. But we've lost contact with it now so we're waiting to hear from anyone who says they've spotted it."

Mr George said there had been some reports that turned out to be buzzards - a far more common species in the UK with a similar profile to a red-tailed hawk, but much different colouring. 

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"She's got a massive v-shaped tail that's about 10 inches long," he said. "She has a very pale body, a yellow beak and yellow feet."

Mr George said Cloud also had rings around each of her legs with Defra and breeder identification numbers.

She also has mews jesses, which are short leather straps a hawk commonly wears when in an aviary.  

Red-tailed hawks can be found in the wild across North and Central America from Alaska to Panama.

There is an estimated 2 million of them so they are not endangered, and they are considered the North American version of Britain's common buzzard.  

They normally feed by preying on small mammals such as rodents, rabbits and hares.

Anyone who can help is urged to call Mr George on 07946 286623 or email carlgeorge61@gmail.com.