Well, the Gabar looks to be more grey, is larger I think, and if I zoom in on this birdy it looks like a reddish eye?
Hi DuQues ,
You’re right about gabar goshawk being slightly larger (though with some overlap) than shikra , that adult gabars are more greyish and that juvenile gabars have a more yellowish eye. In my opinion it is a gabar goshawk though , even if there are a couple of odd things about the bird.
The photo material is very good here , since it shows the bird in different positions and reveals a lot of the important characters , and therefore I feel confident in saying that this bird is not a shikra. The bare part alone rules out that species , since both adult and juvenile/immature shikras show a bright yellow colour to the feet , tarsi and cere , unlike this bird with its orange-red bare parts. Furthermore the shape of the cere/gape is wrong for shikra , the bird shows no trace of dark trailing edge to the secondaries as you would expect on shikra , the chest/belly pattern is wrong for shikra which have either a streaked/blotched (young) of finely barred (adult) underside , and so on. This link (http://www.thejunglelook.com/info/bird-info/shikra
" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;) shows some pictures of shikra for comparison – the bird on the top left corner is a young bird.
At a first glance the bird looks like a pretty typical gabar goshawk , but there are three things that bother me a bit.
1. I can’t see the white rump on any of the pictures. I would have expected it to be visible on the 3rd and/or 5th photo but I don’t see it.
2. The bird seems to lack the clear white edged to the secondaries and greater wingcoverts on the perched bird – 3rd photo. However this seems to be a rather variable character , and on the 6th photo the bird actually shows an obvious white trailing edge to the secondaries , so that should not be a problem.
3. As you mention , the bird has a reddish rather than yellowish eye. This is not really consistent with a young gabar , but fits nicely with an adult , and since the plumage suggests a young bird , that is a bit puzzling. An explanation for that could be that the bird is in some kind of transitional sub-adult state. That would also explain the colour of the other bare parts , which seems to be somewhere in between what you would expect on young and adult birds – and also explain the lack of white tips to the greater wingcoverts.
Apart from the apparent lack of a clear white rump , I feel pretty certain that the bird on these photos is an immature/sub-adult gabar goshawk.