The spotted harrier (Circus assimilis) also known as the smoke hawk, is a large Australasian bird of prey belonging to the family Accipitridae.
The spotted harrier is a medium-sized, slender bird of prey with adult females reaching 58–61 cm. Both adults and juvenile birds have an owl-like facial ruff that creates the appearance of a short, broad head as well as long yellow legs. The spotted harrier's wings feature prominent black tips and the tail is prominently barred and slightly wedge shaped.
Adult males are much smaller than the females only growing to 50–55 cm. Adult birds have blue to grey upper parts with a chestnut face and underparts that feature numerous white spots. Juvenile birds in their first year of life are mostly a dark brown and buff on their upperparts with pale buff underparts that feature brown streaks across the chest and stomach. During the second year of their life the spotted harrier takes on almost adult colouring with white streaks across their underparts instead of the prominent spots that can be seen on adults.