|Black Kite Milvus
The Black Kite is distributed across a large part of Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia but is missing from the Americas. According to Ferguson-Lees it is "probably [the] commonest raptor in world terms".
In Australia, it breeds mainly in north and eastern inland areas though it migrates throughout most of the mainland and can appear in large eruptions whenever there is a plague of rats, mice, grasshoppers or caterpillars. They are also scavengers and are found near human habitation.
|It often looks dark but in
good light the body and underwing coverts are brown while the
wings and tail are faintly barred. There are pale patches at the
base of the primaries. Note that while the tail usually looks
forked, when soaring it can look squarish as in photo 3.
Photos 2 to 4 are of juvenile plumages showing more streaks and fawn spotting including on the underwing linings.
|Photos 1 to 4 were taken at
Mildura, Victoria while photos 5 and 6 were taken (on a duller
day!) at Mareeba, Queensland.
There is more information available via Avibase.
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