Long-tailed Hawk

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Image:LongtailedHawk.jpg

Common Name: Long-tailed Hawk
Scientific Name: Urotriorchis macrourus

Size: 22-26 inches (56-65 cm); Wingspan: 32-35 inches (81-90 cm)

Habitat: Africa; western and central Africa.

This hawk lives secretively in dense forests, and is only noticeable when it flies into clearings.

Status: Least Concern. Global population: Unknown amount of adult individuals. Major threats include wetland desiccation and drainage; persecution by shooting; pollution, especially from excessive pesticide use in and around wetlands (although widespread bans have reduced this threat somewhat), and poisoning by heavy metals, notably the consumption of lead-shot through feeding on contaminated carrion.

Diet: It primarily eats squirrels and small birds; it can also hunt chickens in the villages close to the forest.

They spend most of their time in the treetops looking for quarry. It kills prey by breaking the neck.

Nesting: The adult is dark slate above, paler grey on the cheeks and mantle, and darker on the wings. The rump is smoke grey, sometimes with white spots; the upper tail coverts pure white. The tail is black, graduated, the feathers tipped white and with four irregular crossbars of white. The primaries and secondaries are brown, barred black and notched with white on base of inner webs. The chin and lower throat are grey. The rest of the under parts as far as the thighs are chestnut; with white under-tail coverts. The underside of wings and tail are barred black and white. The eyes are reddish yellow, the cere and feet pale yellow.

Immatures are blackish brown above, including the upper-tail coverts, with tawny markings. The tail is broadly banded black and brown above, black and white below, perhaps shorter than that of the adult. Under parts are white, sometimes almost unmarked, sometimes with large blackish spots on breast and sides.

The mating season occurs in July and August, when the pair build a nest on a high tree. Little is known regarding nesting and incubating the young.

Cool Facts: Since the tail comprises about 56% of this raptor's total length, this species ties with the Cinereous Harrier as the raptor with the longest tail relative to its body size.

This 3D Model is found in Songbird ReMix Birds of Prey Volume II: Hawks of the Old World

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