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Australian Wildlife

  Black-shouldered Kite (Elanus axillaris)





Black-shouldered Kite | Elanus axillaris photo
Black-shouldered Kite in Canberra, Australia.

Image by Duncan McCaskill - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)

Black-shouldered Kite | Elanus axillaris photo
Black-shouldered Kite in Canberra, Australia.

Image by Duncan McCaskill - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)

Black-shouldered Kite | Elanus axillaris photo
Black-shouldered Kite flying in Canberra, Australia.

Image by Duncan McCaskill - Some rights reserved.    (view image details)



BIRD FACTS

Description
The Black-shouldered Kite is pale grey above, with a white head, underside and tail. The shoulders are black., and the wings have black tips. It has a red eye and yellow nostrils, legs and feet. It is often seen hovering with feet hanging down.

Size
Length: 36cm. Wing span: 80cm - 100cm

Habitat
treed grassland, farms, road sides, open coastal areas

Food
rodents, especially the House Mouse. Also eats insects such as grasshoppers

Breeding
The nest is an untidy shallow cup made of sticks. The nest is made high in a tree or on man-made structure such as a bridge or power pole. Two to five eggs are laid in a clutch.

Range
across mainland Australia.



Classification
Class:Aves
Order:Falconiformes
Family:Accipitridae
Genus:Elanus
Species:axillaris
Common Name:Black-shouldered Kite