A Red Tailed Hawk is carnivourus, meaning that it eats small rodents for it's main course of meal.It has excellent eye-sight,so it is able to see it's prey from a great distance , even the slightest movement of anything is enough to make the bird swoop down to investigate. The size of prey is how it will determine how to eat it's prey.If the prey is really small it would be swallowed whole, if it were bigger it would be torn up by the hawk's talons before it would be consumed.