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GALLERIES > BIRDS > FALCONIFORMES > FALCONIDAE > TAITA FALCON [Falco fasciinucha]


Taita Falcon Picture
 
 

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SPECIES INFO

The Taita Falcon Falco fasciinucha is one of the smallest Falcons in the Southern African Sub-region. It was first found in the Taita Hills of Kenya whence comes its name. It is spread throughout the eastern portion of subsaharan Africa but is mostly found in Kenya. There are a few nesting sites in Zimbabwe (Zambezi River) and Northeastern South Africa. It is also rather scarce and relatively endangered. In Southern Africa itself, there are a few regular breeding sites where the birds can regularly be found.

Identification

This small falcon is fairly distinctive, but may offer some confusion with a few other species.The rufous belly causes resemblance with African Hobby, but important features to look out for are a white throat and the obvious rufous patches on the nape. Also the underwing coverts are uniform rufous whereas in African Hobby has more streaking. The most obvious underwing feature though is the fact that the flight feathers are barred black and white where as there is much more rufous in the flight feathers of African Hobby.The robust, long-winged Taita Falcons have a short tail. Their flight is fast and somewhat heavy looking, but they are adept at aerial hunting.


The Taita Falcon has a body length of 10 - 12 inches, an approximate wingspan of 1 1/2 - 2 feet, and weighs 7 1/2 - 11 ounces.

Its courting/mating period is similar to that of the Peregrine Falcon. The same applies to its vocal as well as territorial preference.





                                     



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