Three raptors in one morning

posted in: Feeding-vertebrates, Raptors | 1

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Experienced birder-cum-bird photographer KC Tsang was at a local park when he witnessed an eagle flying off with a helpless prey clutched in its talons. This in itself would be an exciting experience for any birder. But this was not all. He documented another raptor circling round and a third flying off, also with a prey tightly clutched in its talons. Three raptors in a single morning! What a morning! His account, illustrated with images, allows readers to vicariously share his exciting encounters on the morning of 31st January 2008:

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“This morning I was at the look-out point at Telok 
Blangah Hill Park (top), looking for swiftlets to
 photograph. From the corner of my eye I sighted a
 raptor swooping down onto the crown of a tree. Unfortunately, I was not in position to record the snatching of the prey by this raptor.

“A minute or 
so later, the raptor rose from the tree carrying 
the prey, a squirrel, in it’s talons (above).
The raptor was a Changeable Hawk Eagle (Spizaetus cirrhatus), adult dark
 morph, while the prey was a Plantain Squirrel (Callosciurus notatus singapurensis) (below left).

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“Besides the Changeable Hawk Eagle in action, there was a Black Baza (Aviceda leuphotes) in
flight (above right). The poor bird, having circled the hill two times and spotted nothing,
 decided to fly elsewhere for its meal.



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“Then some time later, a Brahminy Kite (Haliastur indus) came up from
 below with a prey in its clutches (above). If you are to 
examine the dangling foot, it looks like that of a
 White Breasted Waterhen (Amaurornis phoenicurus) (left), and not the foot of the
 Kite.

“So much excitement for a morning of birding at Telok Blangah Hill Park.”

The Changeable Hawk Eagle is an uncommon resident, the Brahminy Kite a common resident and the Black Baza a common winter visitor and passage migrant.

KC Tsang
Singapore
February 2008
[Images by KC Tsang (raptors), YC (park, waterhen), Johnny Wee (squirrel)]

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One Response

  1. […] February 2008, he encountered a Changeable Hawk Eagle (Spizaetus cirrhatus), a Black Baza (Aviceda leuphotes) and a Brahminy Kite […]

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