Quantcast

Gray-headed Kite, Leptodon cavanensis

The Gray-headed Kite, (Leptodon cayanensis), is a species of bird of prey found in open woodland and swamp forests. It breeds from eastern Mexico and Trinidad south to Peru, Bolivia, Brazil, and northern Argentina. It is one of two species within its genus; the other being the extremely rare White-collared Kite.

The adult is 18 to 20.8 inches in length and weighs 14.5 to 21.35 ounces. It has a gray head, black upperparts, white underparts, and a black tail with two or three white bars. The bill is blue and the legs are gray. The young have two color morphs; a light phase similar to the adult, but with a white head and neck, a black crown and eye stripe, black bill and yellow legs; and a dark phase consisting of a blackish head, neck and upperparts, and dark-streaked pale yellow underparts.

The diet of the Gray-headed Kite consists mainly of reptiles, but it will also feed on frogs and large insects. It will usually sit on an open high perch from which it swoops on its prey. Its call is a whimpering keow.

The nest is made of sticks lined with grass and is built high in a tree. The clutch is one or two white eggs, purplish at one end and spotted brown.

Image credit: Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Gray-headed Kite Leptodon cavanensis


comments powered by Disqus