Urban Birds of Prey (Part II)

Let's have a look at some more raptors that can be seen in our city.

White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster)

The magnificent White-bellied Sea Eagle (Haliaeetus leucogaster) is an opportunistic carnivore with a diet that includes fish, turtles, sea snakes, birds and mammals. It is also monogamous., i.e. a pair remain together until one bird dies, after which the surviving bird quickly seeks a new mate. Mumbai's coastal areas would be the best place to observe this bird.

Oriental Honey Buzzard
Pernis ptilorhynchus)

The Oriental Honey Buzzard (Pernis ptilorhynchus) is a bird of prey from the family Accipitridae. It has a long neck with a relatively small head (resembling the pigeon), making it appear quite distinct from other raptors. It is called the Honey Buzzard as it is known to feed on comb, larvae, pupae and adult forms of bees and wasps. It's diet also includes other insects, reptiles, amphibians, birds and smaller mammals. 

Changeable Hawk-Eagle
Nisaetus cirrhatus)

Changeable Hawk-Eagle (Nisaetus cirrhatus) is a bird of prey, more often seen perched on trees instead of flying. It is not a very large bird, but can still prey on animals bigger than its size. Usually it perches on tall trees, scanning the ground from above and swooping down to hunt small mammals, reptiles, amphibians and also other birds.

Eastern Imperial Eagle
Aquila heliaca)

Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca) is from the genus Aquila (that comprises true eagles). It is a large raptor that can grow to about 3 feet in length, 6 feet in width and 3 kilograms in weight, making it capable of hunting on prey very easily. When the eagles are about four years old, they form monogamous pairs and stay together for life. This raptor was initially found in lowland areas, but due to forest degradation and habitat loss it is forced to stay in high elevations.

Pallid Harrier (Circus macrourus) is a migratory bird of prey. To avoid the harsh cold winters of its breeding place (eastern Europe and Central Asia), it migrates to India and other countries of southeast Asia every year. At present this raptor is classified as Near Threatened (NT) by the IUCN Red List.

Pallid Harrier (Circus macrourus)


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