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GALLERIES > BIRDS > FALCONIFORMES > ACCIPITRIDAE > BLACK-BREASTED BUZZARD [Hamirostra melanosternon]


Black-breasted Buzzard Picture
 
 

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SPECIES INFO

The Black-breasted Buzzard (Hamirostra melanosternon), or Black-breasted Kite, is a large bird of prey in the family Accipitridae and the monotypic genus Hamirostra. Its wing length ranges between 440 and 500 mm, with females being larger.

Identification

Adult birds are relatively easy to recognise by their mainly dark plumage combined with distinctive white patches on the wings at the bases of the primary feathers.

Range

The Black-breasted Buzzard is endemic to Australia and found mainly in the northern and central parts of the continent; it does not occur in Tasmania.

Habitat

Deserts, dry grasslands, shrublands, sparse tropical woodlands and tree-lined watercourses.

Food

It eats rabbits, large lizards, birds and carrion. It will also raid the eggs of ground-nesting birds, breaking large eggs by hurling stones against them with its large beak (see gallery below).

In flight, Cunnamulla, SW Qld

Nesting

This species nests in trees, often along watercourses, building a platform of sticks with a central leaf-lined depression for the clutch of usually two eggs. The incubation period is about 40 days, with chicks fledging about 60 days after hatching.





                                     



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