Elanus caeruleus, Black-winged Kite, Elang Tikus

Written by on November 19, 2010 in Indonesia Bird with 0 Comments

Elanus caeruleus, Black-winged Kite, Elang Tikus

The Black-wingElanus caeruleus, Black-winged Kite, Elang Tikused Kite (Elanus caeruleus) is a small bird of prey in the family Accipitridae which also includes many other diurnal raptors such as eagles, buzzards and harriers.

This species was formerly referred to as the Black-shouldered Kite, but this name is now only used for the Australian species, Elanus axillaris, which at one time (along with the American White-tailed Kite E. leucurus) was treated as a subspecies of E. caeruleus.

It is a species primarily of open land and semi-deserts in sub-Saharan Africa and tropical Asia, but it has a foothold in Europe in Spain and Portugal. It nests in trees.

It takes live prey such as small mammals, birds and insects. The slow hunting flight is like a harrier, but it will hover like a Kestrel.

[edit] Identification

This bird is unmistakable. It has a white head with a black “mask”, and white underparts except for black tips to its narrow falcon-like wings. Upperparts are blue-grey except for black shoulder patches.

The tail is short and square, quite unlike the more familiar Milvus kites.

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