Family : Accipitridae
Genus : Terathopius
Almost endemic to Africa the Bateleur Eagle (Terathopius ecaudatus) is a powerfully built medium sized eagle. A colourful species of bird which undoubtedly is one of its attributes in the field, making easily identifiable. Bateleur Eagles have a very short tail which, together with its white under-wings makes it unmistakable in flight. Both adults have black plumage, a brown mantle and tail, grey shoulders, tawny coloured wing converts as well as red facial skin, bill and legs. The female Bateleur Eagle also has tawny secondary wing feathers. Juvenile birds are brown with white dappling and have greenish facial skin.
The Bateleur Eagle is sexually dimorphic, however the average adult is 55 to 70 cm (22 to 28 in) long with a 186 cm (6 ft 1 in) wingspan. Adults weight typically around 2 to 2.6 kg (4 lb 7 oz to 5 lb 12 oz). The Bateleur Eagle is diurnal (active during the day) and hunts over a territory of approximately 250 square miles (650 km2) a day. Bateleur Eagles are hunters and scavengers with birds such as Cape Turtle Doves and Burchell's Sandgrouse or similar sized birds being the preferred prey items, although it may attack small mammals and also take carrion.
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African Wildlife and Nature Photographs have written a blog post about the Bateleur Eagle (Terathopius ecaudatus) for some further information on these birds of prey.
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