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Sparrowhawk: Black

Identify and index birds in Southern Africa
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Johan van Rensburg
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Sparrowhawk: Black

Unread post by Johan van Rensburg » Sun Jun 08, 2008 2:35 pm

I will not be back in "civilisation" until 18 June, but this bird has me so intrigued that I thought I'll post it from an internet cafe to see if there is anyone with ideas as to its ID. The barring on the tail, slight crest and short gape are the only real clues. The bird seems to have vertical striping on its throat and has a suggestion of a malar stripe.

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Richprins

Mystery

Unread post by Richprins » Sun Jun 08, 2008 6:37 pm

Great pic, JvR!

Difficult one!

Any estimations on size and leg colour/feathering?

I would have to go for one of the buzzards... :shock:

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Unread post by wildtuinman » Mon Jun 09, 2008 5:24 am

JVR, when and where was this bird seen?

Did you get a closer look at the lower leg (tarsi) area. If so, could you describe it for us a bit more?

I think all possibilities of a true eagle is ruled out here as the gape just ain't that prominent.

It has a remarkable resemblance to a juvenile Honey Buzzard. But the time of the year seen if you saw it recently and if the area is St. Lucia would not be a good to help the course of id'ying it as one.

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Unread post by wildtuinman » Mon Jun 09, 2008 7:06 am

A Wahlberg's feet would also be more yellow. I know this is bird's feet may be covered with mud thou. So one can't actually go on this factor alone.

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Unread post by Jeanus » Mon Jun 09, 2008 2:49 pm

I fear treading in this thread because my knowledge is not up to par but can I ask if there is a possibility of Johans bird being a juvinile african marsh harrier
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Unread post by TG » Mon Jun 09, 2008 7:17 pm

JvR's bird is a juvenile Black Sparrowhawk.

TG

Richprins

JvR's Bird

Unread post by Richprins » Mon Jun 09, 2008 7:46 pm

Welcome, TG!

That is a good call, but we sort of said a while back that one should give more info for the benefit of general viewers! :D

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Johan van Rensburg
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Unread post by Johan van Rensburg » Tue Jun 10, 2008 4:43 am

Goodness... I passed over that juvie illustration in my SASOL countless times! It makes plenty sense now as just the day before we saw the adult in the same area (an easy ID with the aid of much worse pix!!). All the "pointers" I picked from the photograph fits your call. Thanks a stack TG!
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Re: JvR's Bird

Unread post by francoisd » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:15 am

Richprins wrote:Welcome, TG!

That is a good call, but we sort of said a while back that one should give more info for the benefit of general viewers! :D

TG can correct me if I'm wrong but this is my elimination of possibilities

Barred tail - couple of options

Rufous chest/neck area with heavy streaks - maybe 2 options - juv African Harrier-hawk and juv Black Sparrowhawk

The bird in the photo does not have bare skin around the eye and the eye is also light in colour so not a juv African Harrier-hawk which leaves juvenile Black Sparrowhawk
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Sparrowhawk, Black

Unread post by dar » Mon Dec 15, 2008 2:13 pm

Yesterday my wife called me to look out the bathroom window. I came upon this little stunner. Any idea what he /she is?

We live in somerset west (cape town) where you get large mountains behind us and the coast is 2 minutes drive.


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Re: What raptor is this?

Unread post by ivan » Mon Dec 15, 2008 4:44 pm

look like a Black Sparrowhawk to me

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Re: What raptor is this?

Unread post by dar » Wed Dec 17, 2008 11:24 am

Thanks. What made it quite amazing is that we found the chest and more feathers on the front lawn where I assume the initial hit happened. This must have been right in front of our dogs (5 of them) and I can't understand how the bird got this right?

Anyway, I took the photos by standing in the bath and pointing through a gap between the window and the burglar bars while trying to keep the camera steady at full zoom.

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Re: What raptor is this?

Unread post by dar » Thu Dec 18, 2008 4:23 pm

Hi,

This is a beautiful white morph Black Sparrowhawk. I think, comparing it's size with that of the dove, that it is probably a male.
Congratulations on getting such nice pictures,

Ann Koeslag


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