Strictly, to mean any of the species in the generaAccipiter, Micronisus , Melierax , Urotriorchis , and Megatriorchis . The widespread Accipiter genus includes goshawks, sparrowhawks, the Sharp-shinned Hawk and others. They are mainly woodland birds that hunt by sudden dashes from a concealed perch. They usually have long tails and high visual acuity.
The common names of birds in various parts of the world often use hawk loosely. For example, in North America, the buzzards (Buteo) are often called "hawks".
The true hawks form the sub-family Accipitrinae and most are in the genus Accipiter.
In February 2005 the Canadianscientist Dr Louis Lefebvre announced a method of measuring avian IQ in terms of their innovation in feeding habits. Hawks were named among the most intelligent birds based on this scale.