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Ayres's hawk-eagle

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Title: Ayres's hawk-eagle  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Hieraaetus, Buteoninae, Golden eagle, Eagle, Cape Verde buzzard
Collection: Birds of Africa, Birds of Cameroon, Hieraaetus
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Ayres's hawk-eagle

Ayres' hawk-eagle
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Falconiformes
(or Accipitriformes, q.v.)
Family: Accipitridae
Genus: Hieraaetus
Species: H. ayresii
Binomial name
Hieraaetus ayresii
Gurney, 1862
Ayres's hawk-eagle Range

Ayres's hawk-eagle (Hieraaetus ayresii), also referred to as Ayres' eagle,[2] is a medium-sized bird of prey in the family Accipitridae. It is native to African woodlands. Its name honors South African ornithologist Thomas Ayres.[3]


  • Description and Behavior 1
  • Distribution and Habitat 2
  • Media 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Description and Behavior

This relatively small eagle has a total length of 46 to 55 cm (18 to 22 in).[2] It usually weighs 685 to 1,045 g (1 lb 8.2 oz to 2 lb 4.9 oz); but may exceed 1,262 g (2 lb 12.5 oz). The female is larger and heavier than the male.[4] In one study, the wingspan of two individuals averaged 124 cm (49 in).[5] Ayres's hawk-eagle has a long, barred tail and relatively narrow wings. The adult plumage is predominantly black/brown, with heavily streaked white underparts; in some individuals, the underparts are much paler. Adults typically have a pronounced white shoulder where the leading edge of the wing meets the body (the carpal joint). The immature is drab and paler.

The Ayres's hawk-eagle hunts small mammals like rabbits and mice.

Distribution and Habitat

Ayres' eagle is an uncommon resident of non-arid Sub-Saharan Africa, and a non-breeding summer migrant to the far south of its range (South Africa; southern Zimbabwe, Mozambique).[2][6] It appears to prefer dense woodland and forest edges.[4]

Although an uncommon bird throughout its range, it is classified as Least Concern (LC) by the IUCN, due to its large range and its numbers - while small - appearing stable at the present time.


Juvenile in flight


  1. ^  
  2. ^ a b c Newman, K (1998) Newman's Birds of Southern Africa. Halfway House: Southern Book Publishers. ISBN 1868127680.
  3. ^ Beolens, Bo; Watkins, Michael (2003). Whose Bird? Men and Women Commemorated in the Common Names of Birds. London: Christopher Helm. p. 33. 
  4. ^ a b Sinclair, I & Davidson, I (1995) Southern African Birds: A Photographic Guide. Cape Town: Struik Publishers. ISBN 1868257851
  5. ^ Mendelsohn J.M.; Kemp, A.C.; Biggs, H.C.; Biggs, R.; &Brown, C.J. (1989) Wing Areas, Wing Loadings and Wing Spans of 66 Species of African Raptors, Ostrich, Vol. 60, No.1, p. 35-60
  6. ^ Allan, D. 1996. A Photographic Guide to Birds of Prey of Southern, Central and East Africa. Cape Town: New Holland Publishers. ISBN 1853689033.

External links

  • (Ayres's hawk-eagle = ) Ayres' eagle - Species text in The Atlas of Southern African Birds

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