Hook-billed Kite

Chondrohierax uncinatus

Order

FALCONIFORMES

Family

Kites, Eagles and Hawks (Accipitridae)

Code 4

HBKI

Code 6

CHOUNC

ITIS

ILLUSTRATION

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PHOTOS

CONSERVATION STATUS

Least Concern

The Hook-billed Kite has a large range, estimated globally at 9,800,000 square kilometers. Native to the Americas and nearby island nations, this bird prefers subtropical or tropical forest or shrubland ecosystems. The global population of this bird is estimated at 50,000 to 500,000 individuals and while it does show signs of decline, they are not severe enough to necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Hook-billed Kite is Least Concern.

SUMMARY

Overview

Hook-billed Kite: Unusual tropical kite with long paddle-shaped wings. Sluggish, retiring kite that generally remains concealed within foliage of trees. Occurs in two morphs, gray and black, which is very rare to Texas. Underparts and underwings are heavily barred. Tail is banded. Yellow legs, feet.


Range and Habitat

Hook-billed Kite: From Texas the breeding range extends south, on both coasts of mainland Mexico and Central America to Colombia. In South America, they are found west of the Andes from Colombia to south Ecuador. On the Atlantic slope kites are resident south to southern Brazil, Bolivia and northern Argentina. Also resident in Cuba, Trinidad and Grenada.

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Hook-billed Kite SONGS AND CALLS

Hook-billed Kite S1

Shrill calls given in flight.

Hook-billed Kite S2

Chattering "whee-ee-ee-ee-ee" calls usually given during breeding season.

Similar Sounding


Voice Text

"ke-ke-ke-ke"

INTERESTING FACTS

  • The Hook-billed Kite has a very musical whistle, resembling notes of an American Oriole. When defending territory, the kite utters harsh chattering and screaming notes.
  • There is only one species, but within that species there is probably more individual variation in colour and in size of bill than in any other species of diurnal raptor.
  • This bird often has a favorite feeding perch, marked by a pile of empty snail shells on the ground below.
  • A group of kites has many collective nouns, including a "brood", "kettle", "roost", "stooping", and "string" of kites.

SIMILAR BIRDS

RANGE MAP NORTH AMERICA

About this North America Map

This map shows how this species is distributed across North America.

FAMILY DESCRIPTION

TERMINOLOGY

CREDITS

Author

Artist

Yury Lisyak

HELP ME IDENTIFY A BIRD

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UnderpartsX

Belly, undertail coverts, chest, flanks, and foreneck.

Parts of a Standing bird X
Head Feathers and Markings X
Parts of a Flying bird X