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I Didn't Know That! – African Harrier Hawk

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I Didn't Know That! – African Harrier Hawk

While we have talked about the African Harrier Hawk in the past, its been just long enough for some of us to have forgotten the unique capabilities of this bird of prey.

As we can see in the attached video of a recent sighting, the hawk appears to be ever watchful for a tasty tidbit that might cross his path. He will occasionally forage on the ground. However, his favorite way of finding food is what makes him unique among birds of prey. Making his way along tree trunks, hanging onto the tree limbs by his feet and dangling down while flapping makes him look like he is as clumsy as wet chicken. But this bird is extremely agile, probing with his slender bill in small areas for insects, larvae, small animals or most anything he can find, including small reptiles and amphibians. Weaver nests are raided while he hangs from the nest to pry the young or eggs out.

Using his observation skills wisely, he keeps an eye on the mobs of nesting birds, allowing him to identify an area worth foraging.
When nesting season arrives (June to November – peaking from September-October), perhaps we will see more of these cunning birds around the cams!