10 Most Beautiful Birds Of Prey In The World
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10 Most Beautiful Birds Of Prey In The World

October 20, 2019


Birds of prey, or raptors, include species
of bird that primarily hunt and feed on vertebrates that are large relative to the hunter. Additionally, they have keen eyesight for
detecting food at a distance or during flight, strong feet equipped with talons for grasping
or killing prey, and powerful, curved beaks for tearing flesh. The term raptor is derived from the Latin
word rapio, meaning to seize or take by force. In addition to hunting live prey, most also
eat carrion, at least occasionally, and vultures and condors eat carrion as their main food
source. Despite of the typical appearance you have
in mind regarding the birds in this bird category, some species are actually really beautiful. Here are the 10 most beautiful birds of prey
in the world. Number 10. The pale chanting goshawk breeds in southern
Africa and is a resident species of dry, open semi-desert with less annual rainfall. It is commonly seen perched on roadside telephone
poles. This species is approximately 55 cm (22 in)
in length with a wingspan of 110 cm (43 in). The adult has grey upperparts with a white
rump. The central tail feathers are black tipped
with white, while the outer tail feathers, head, and upper breast are barred in grey
and white. The bill is red at the base and dark grey
at the tip. The cere, facial skin and long legs are also
red. In flight, the adult has black primary flight
feathers, very pale grey secondaries, and grey forewings. From below, the flight feathers and tail are
white with black barring. Number 9. The black-and-white hawk-eagle is found throughout
a large part of tropical America, from southern Mexico to northern Argentina. It is some 50-60 cm (20-24 in) long overall
and weighs about 850 g (30 oz). The head, neck and body are white; a small
crest forms a black spot on top of the head, and the area around the eyes, particularly
towards the bill, is also black. The wings are black, and the bird has a brownish
tail barred black-dark grey and with white tip. The iris is orange, the feet pale to bright
yellow with black talons. The bill is black with a yellow cere. The sexes are alike in color, but the female
is larger. The black-and-white hawk-eagle is hard to
confuse with any other bird in its range. The black-faced hawk is very similar in overall
coloration, but it is much smaller and has a black tail with a single bold white bar
in the middle. Number 8. The collared falconet is found in the Indian
Subcontinent and Southeast Asia. Its natural habitat is temperate forests,
often on the edges of broadleaf forest. The collared falconet is a very small falcon
with the length of 18 cm (7 inches), shrike-like in shape, mainly pied and having bold white
supercilia and collar, with relatively heavy double-toothed bill. It has shortish wings, a medium-length tail,
strong half-feathered legs, and powerful feet. It perches conspicuously on top or edge of
tree or bush, often on dead twig, frequently bobbing head and slowly moving tail up and
down; wing-tips less than half down tail. Sexes are similar. Number 7. The secretarybird is a very large, mostly
terrestrial bird of prey, usually found in the open grasslands and savannah of the sub-Saharan
region. The secretary bird is instantly recognizable
as a very large bird with an eagle-like body on crane-like legs which increases the bird’s
height to as much as 1.3 m (4.3 ft) tall. This bird has an eagle-like head with a hooked
bill, but has rounded wings. The neck is not especially long, and can only
be lowered down to the inter-tarsal joint, so birds reaching down to the ground or drinking
must stoop to do so. ecretary bird flight feathers and thighs are
black, while most of the coverts are grey with some being white. It has a large wedge-shaped tail with alternating
white and black banding at its ends. Sexes look similar to one another, although
the male has longer head plumes and tail feathers. Adults have a featherless red-orange face
as opposed to the yellow facial skin of the young. Number 6. The northern caracara is a resident in Cuba,
northern South America and most of Central America and Mexico, just reaching the southernmost
parts of the United States, including Florida, where it is resident but listed as threatened. The northern caracara has a length of 49-58
cm (19-23 in), a wingspan of 122-125 cm (48-49 in), and weighs around 1 kg. Average weight is higher in the north of the
range, smaller in the tropics. Among caracaras, it is second in size only
to the southern caracara. Broad-winged and long-tailed, it also has
long legs and frequently walks and runs on the ground. It is very cross-shaped in flight. The adult has a black body, wings, crest and
crown. The neck, rump, and conspicuous wing patches
are white, and the tail is white with black barring and a broad terminal band. The breast is white, finely barred with black. The bill is thick, grey and hooked, and the
legs are yellow. The cere and facial skin are deep yellow to
orange-red depending on age and mood. Number 5. The bat falcon is a resident breeder in tropical
Mexico, Central and South America, and Trinidad. The female bat falcon, at 30.5 cm (12 in)
length, is much larger than the 23 cm (9 in) long male. Adults have a black back, head, and tail. The throat, upper breast, and neck sides are
creamy white, the lower breast and belly are black, finely barred white, and the thighs
and lower belly are orange. Young birds are similar, but with a buffy
throat. This small dark bird of prey inhabits open
woodlands and forest clearings. Bat falcons perch conspicuously on high, open
snags, from which they launch aerial attacks on their prey. They hunt bats, birds, and large insects such
as dragonflies. The smaller male takes more insects, and the
female more birds and bats. Number 4. The slender American Kestrel is roughly the
size and shape of a Mourning Dove, although it has a larger head; longer, narrow wings,
and long, square-tipped tail. In flight, the wings are often bent and the
wingtips swept back. This bird of prey is pale when seen from below
and warm, rusty brown spotted with black above, with a black band near the tip of the tail. Males have slate-blue wings, females’ wings
are reddish brown. Both sexes have pairs of black vertical slashes
on the sides of their pale faces, sometimes called a “mustache” and a “sideburn.” It hunts insects, small mammals, and reptiles
from a perch or on the wing. It will hover above a field on rapidly beating
wings, or soar in place in strong winds above a hillside. Flight style is quick and buoyant, almost
erratic, with wings usually swept back. Number 3. The pygmy falcon, or African pygmy falcon
lives in eastern and southern Africa and is the smallest raptor on the continent. As a small falcon, only 19 to 20 cm (8 in)
long, it preys on insects, small reptiles, and small mammals. Adult pygmy falcons are white below and on
the face, grey above, and females having a chestnut back. There are white “eye spots” on the nape. Juveniles have a brown back, duller than adult
females, with a rufous wash on the breast. The flight feathers of the wings are spotted
black and white, while the tail is barred black and white. Pygmy falcon territories are occasionally
inhabited by groups, where there are more than two adults living together and tending
nestlings. There are four potential reasons for this
behaviour: defence, co-operative polyandry, delayed dispersal of offspring and cooperation,
and thermoregulation (warmth). Number 2. The black baza is found in the forests of
the Northeast India, the eastern Himalayas, China and Southeast Asia. The black baza is a small and distinctively
coloured raptor; it ranges from 30 to 35 cm (12-14 in) in length, a 66 to 80 cm (26-31
in) wingspan and a weight of 168 to 224 g. When perched, the upright crest and contrasting
patterns make it difficult to misidentify. In flight it is crow like and is often seen
in small groups or flocks during migration. It is somewhat crepuscular and more active
at dusk and in overcast weather. This bird has short, stout legs and feet with
strong talons. A prominent crest is a feature of this bird
of prey. Number 1. The Bateleur eagle is the most famous of the
snake eagles. Bateleur is French for ‘tightrope-walker’. This name was probably chosen because of its
distinctive aerial acrobatics. Its pitch black feathers with white under
the wings, bright red face and legs and black beak are characteristic markings. Unlike most creatures, female Bateleur eagles
are larger than males. It can take an immature Bateleur up to 8 years
to shed all their brown plumage and turn in to full adults. The bateleur has exceptionally long wings
and a short tail, so that its feet extend beyond the tail in flight. The bateleur’s brown eyes are surrounded by
facial skin that is a strikingly bright red, and devoid of feathers. As if to give a sense of artistic balance,
the legs are the same brilliant red as the face.

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