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Order Birds of prey/Accipiterformes, Family Hawks/Accipitridae

Bonelli's Eagle/Hieraaetus fasciatus - Adult

L 55-65 cm, WS 145-165 cm. Breeds in forests or mountains. Rare, c. 600 pairs within region, mainly in SW. Food usually medium-sized mammals or birds. Nests in cave or on ledge on steep, inaccessible cliff, sometimes in tall tree.
IDENTIFICATION: Medium-large, powerful eagle with broad wings and straight, rather broad, square-cut tail of about the same length as width of wing, or slightly less. Wing-tips only moderately ‘fingered’ for such a large raptor. Carpals pressed forward when gliding, and combination of this and fairly small head and length of tail recalls Honey Buzzard. Soars and glides on flattish wings, primaries at times slightly lowered. - Adult: At distance in flight, combination of whitish body and dark wings and tail unique. When seen closer from below, leading edge of wings is white (extent variable, involving lesser and sometimes some median coverts), outer primaries are basally diffusely pale, and greater coverts are darkest, being blackish; tail is pale grey with broad dark terminal band. White areas narrowly streaked dark. Upperparts dark grey with characteristic whitish patch on back (of varying size; can be missing). - Juvenile: Underbody and underwing-coverts pale rufous-buff (finely streaked dark), wing-tips blackish, flight- and tail-feathers pale grey and narrowly barred dark, no broad terminal band on tail. Greater coverts can be rufous-buff without any dark, or have some dark bases forming a faint band on outer and on primary coverts. - Immature: At first, underbody is pale brown, prominently streaked dark. Gradually, greater coverts become darker and body whiter. Dark terminal tail-band developed from 3rd winter, adult plumage from 5th.
VOICE: Apparently rather silent. Various barks and shrill notes have been recorded at breeding sites.

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