During my ten weeks in South Africa, I saw a nice assortment of raptors. I was able to find 21 different diurnal raptors, plus one owl species. These species were: Cape Vulture, Secretarybird, ‘Yellow-billed’ Black Kite, White-tailed Kite, Long-crested Eagle, African Fish-Eagle, Steppe Buzzard, African Goshawk, Southern Pale Chanting Goshawk, African Marsh-Harrier, African Harrier-Hawk (Gymnogene), Osprey, Lanner Falcon, Amur Falcon, Western Red-footed Falcon, Sooty Falcon, Eurasian Hobby, Eurasian Kestrel, and African Wood-Owl. Follow these links to posts I have already written concerning Amur Falcons, Cape Vultures, and African Wood-Owls. Below are some of my favorite photos of some of the raptor species I saw!
Jackal Buzzards are South Africa’s version of the Red-tailed Hawk…they are pretty much everywhere within southern Africa that has mountains and grassland, but are found nowhere else on Earth.
The Southern Pale Chanting Goshawk is a fairly common raptor of arid areas and I commonly saw it perched on telephone poles and one top of small scrubs like in this photo. This accipiter was my 700th life bird!
The Booted Eagle was another raptor I saw often. It has a light morph and a dark morph, a dark morph adult.
The Eurasian Kestrel (also known as the Rock Kestrel in Africa) is a common summer visitor to southern Africa’s grassland and agricultural lands.
I spotted this Eurasian Hobby one evening while I was birding around the Dwesa Nature Reserve. These large falcons are uncommon to rare in southern Africa and I was very excited to find one.
A classic symbol of African birds is the African Fish-Eagle. Luckily I spent most of my time near the ocean and near rivers, so I was fortunate enough to see lots of fish-eagles.
The Long-crested Eagle is a stunningly beautiful large raptor. I was able to see quite a few, especially near the Mkambati Nature Reserve.
This final photo is of a bird, most readers to this website should be familiar with; the White-tailed Kite (formerly called the Black-shouldered Kite). This species is also found in Africa and is common in grassland areas where it is typically seen perched on telephone poles.