Bird Families

Small sparrowhawk

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  • »Hawks (Accipitrinae)

Hawks (Accipitrinae)

A very large subfamily, including 55 species.
Genus True hawks (Accipiter). They have short, wide wings and a long tail. The plumage is loose and soft, almost like that of owls, which is why, for example, falcons fly more slowly, but much more maneuverable. Paws are long, the claw is the longest on 1 and 4 toes. Females can be 2 times larger than males.
Often they watch for their prey from an ambush on a hill or soaring in the air. May continue to stalk the victim on foot on the ground.
Distributed all over the world, small genera are typical for Africa and Australia.

Here is a list of all types:

* Subfamily Hawks (Accipitrinae)
o Genus True Hawks (Accipiter)
+ Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis)
+ Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus)
+ Gray-bellied goshawk (Accipiter poliogaster)
+ Crested Hawk (Accipiter trivirgatus)
+ Sulawesian crested hawk (Accipiter griseiceps)
+ Red-breasted goshawk (Accipiter toussenelii)
+ African goshawk (Accipiter tachiro)
+ Short-toed Hawk (Accipiter soloensis)
+ Madagascar hawk (Accipiter francesii)
+ Spotted Sparrowhawk (Accipiter trinotatus)
+ Light hawk (Accipiter novaehollandiae)
+ Australian brown hawk (Accipiter fasciatus)
+ Black-backed Hawk (Accipiter melanochlamys)
+ Magpie Hawk (Accipiter albogularis)
+ Fijian hawk (Accipiter rufitorques)
+ White-bellied Hawk (Accipiter haplochrous)
+ Moluccan hawk (Accipiter henicogrammus)
+ New Guinea Ash-headed Goshawk (Accipiter poliocephalus)
+ New British gray-bellied goshawk (Accipiter princeps)
+ Black and white hawk (Accipiter melanoleucus)
+ Madagascar Goshawk (Accipiter henstii)
+ Meyer hawk (Accipiter meyerianus)
+ Chestnut-bellied Hawk (Accipiter castanilius)
+ Accipiter butleri
+ European Tuvik (Accipiter brevipes)
+ Blue-gray hawk (Accipiter luteoschistaceus)
+ Accipiter imitator
+ Red-headed Hawk (Accipiter erythropus)
+ African Little Sparrowhawk (Accipiter minullus)
+ Japanese Sparrowhawk (Accipiter gularis)
+ Celebes hawk (Accipiter nanus)
+ Collared Hawk (Accipiter cirrocephalus)
+ New British Hawk (Accipiter brachyurus)
+ Grape-breasted Sparrowhawk (Accipiter rhodogaster)
+ Madagascar Sparrowhawk (Accipiter madagascariensis)
+ Red-sided Sparrowhawk (Accipiter ovampensis)
+ Red-bellied Sparrowhawk (Accipiter rufiventris)
+ Turkestan tuvik (Accipiter badius)
+ Baby Hawk (Accipiter superciliosus)
+ Semi-collared hawk (Accipiter collaris)
+ Striped hawk (Accipiter striatus)
+ Cooper's hawk (Accipiter cooperii)
+ Cuban hawk (Accipiter gundlachi)
+ Bicolor hawk (Accipiter bicolor)
+ Lesser Sparrowhawk (Accipiter virgatus)
+ Accipiter chionogaster
+ Accipiter erythrauchen
+ Accipiter erythronemius
+ Accipiter ventralis
o Genus Micronisus
+ Song hawk-gabar (Micronisus gabar)
o Genus Songhawks (Melierax)
+ Dark song hawk (Melierax metabates)
+ Gray song hawk (Melierax poliopterus)
+ Light song hawk (Melierax canorus)
o Genus Long-tailed hawks (Urotriorchis)
+ African long-tailed hawk (Urotriorchis macrourus)
o Genus Red Hawks (Erythrotriorchis)
+ Red hawk (Erythrotriorchis radiatus)
+ Luxurious Hawk (Erythrotriorchis buergersi)

The goshawk, or large hawk, is the largest member of the subfamily. And also the only hawk, common in both hemispheres.
Females are larger than males, colored the same; in flight, the female looks more overweight.
The weight of males is 0.6-1.2 kg, females are 0.8-2.1 kg, length is 50-68 cm, wingspan is 97-127 cm.
Flight is generally swift, agile, with rapid wing flaps alternating with glide, reminiscent of falcon flight. When soaring, which is rare, it holds the wings straight. It hunts birds (hazel grouse, black grouse, wood grouse), mammals (mice, squirrels, hares).


Edited by Metailurus (26 March 2008 17:08:20)

External signs of a small sparrowhawk

The small sparrowhawk has a body length of 34 cm, and a wingspan of 46 to 58 cm. Its weight reaches 92 - 193 grams.

Lesser Sparrowhawk (Accipiter gularis)

This small feathered predator with long, pointed wings, a proportionally short tail and very long and narrow legs. Its silhouette is very similar to that of other hawks. The female differs from the male in the color of the plumage, moreover, the female bird is much larger and heavier than her partner.

The plumage of an adult male is slate-blackish at the top. The cheeks are gray to grayish brown. Some white feathers adorn the neck. The tail is gray with 3 dark transverse stripes. The throat is white spotted with vague stripes that form a barely noticeable wide stripe. The underside of the body is generally gray-whitish, with distinct reddish streaks and thin brown streaks. In the area of ​​the anus, the plumage is white. In some birds, the chest and sides are sometimes completely rufous. The female has a bluish-brownish plumage, but the top appears darker. Streaks are visible in the center of the throat, below they are sharper, clear, strongly brown and not blurred.

Lesser Sparrowhawk is a small feathered predator

Young small sparrowhawks differ from adult birds in plumage coloration.

They have a dark brown top with red highlights. Their cheeks are more gray. The eyebrows and neck are whitish. The tail is completely the same as that of adult birds. The underside is completely creamy white, with brown stripes on the chest, passing into panels on the sides, thighs, and spots on the belly. Plumage coloration as in adult sparrowhawks becomes after molting.

The iris in adult birds is orange-red. The wax and paws are yellow. In young ones, the iris is karya, the paws are greenish-yellow.

Habitats of the small sparrowhawk

Small sparrowhawks are distributed in the south of the taiga and in the subalpine zones. They are found in typically mixed or deciduous forests. In addition, they are sometimes observed in pure pine forests. Within all of these habitats, they often live along rivers or near bodies of water. On the Nansei Islands, small sparrowhawks inhabit subtropical forests, but in Japan they appear in city parks and gardens, even in the Tokyo area. During winter migration, they often stop at plantations and areas in the process of regeneration, in villages and in more open areas, where woodlands and shrubs turn into rice fields or swamps. Little sparrowhawks rarely rise from sea level to an altitude of 1800 meters, most often below 1000 meters above sea level.

Lesser Sparrowhawk live in forests

Sparrowhawk spread

Lesser Sparrowhawks are distributed in East Asia, but the boundaries of its range are not very precisely known. They live in southern Siberia, in the vicinity of Tomsk, on the upper Ob and Altai to western Oussouriland. The habitat through the Transbaikalia continues east to Sakhalin and the Kuril Islands. In the southern direction it includes the north of Mongolia, Manchuria, northeastern China (Hebei, Heilongjiang), and North Korea. Off the coast, it is found on all the islands of Japan and on the Nansei islands. Little Sparrowhawks winter in the southeastern part of China, in most of the Indochina Peninsula, the Thai peninsula, and further in the south to the islands of Sumatra and Java. The species forms two subspecies: A. g. Gularis is distributed throughout its range, with the exception of Nansei. A. g. iwasakii inhabits the Nansei islands, but more specifically Okinawa, Ishikagi, and Iriomote.

Features of the behavior of the small sparrowhawk

During the breeding season, the behavior of the little sparrowhawk is usually secretive, the birds, as a rule, remain under the cover of the forest, but in winter they use open roosts. During migrations, small sparrowhaws form rather dense clusters, while in the rest of the year, they live singly or in pairs. Like many accipitridés, the little sparrowhaws show their flights. They practice high-altitude circular turns in the sky or wavy flight in the form of a slide. Sometimes they fly with very slow wing flaps.

During the breeding season, the behavior of the small sparrowhawk is secretive

Since September, almost all small sparrowhawks migrate to the south. Return to nesting sites occurs from March to May. They fly from Sakhalin through Japan, the Nansei Islands, Taiwan, the Philippines to Sulawesi and Borneo. The second route runs from Siberia through China and to Sumatra, Java and the Lesser Sunda Islands.

Reproduction of small sparrowhawk

Lesser Sparrowhawks breed mainly from June to August.

However, young birds in flight were seen in China at the end of May, and in Japan a month later. These birds of prey build a nest from branches, lined with pieces of bark and green leaves. The nest is located on a tree 10 meters above the ground, often near the main trunk. Clutch in Japan contains 2 or 3 eggs, in Siberia 4 or 5. Incubation lasts from 25 to 28 days. It is not known exactly when the young hawks leave their nest.

Mali1 sparrowhawk in flight

Sparrowhawk nutrition

Small sparrowhawks consume mainly small birds, they also prey on insects and small mammals. They prefer to catch primarily friquets, which live in trees on the outskirts of cities, but also chase buntings, tits, warblers and nuthatches. They sometimes attack larger prey such as blue magpies (Cyanopica cyanea) and bizets pigeons (Columbia livia). The proportion of insects in the diet can reach between 28 and 40%. Small mammals such as shrews are hunted by small sparrowhawks only when they are unusually abundant. Bats and reptiles supplement the diet.

The hunting methods of these feathered predators are not described, but, apparently, they are the same as those of European relatives. Small sparrowhawks usually lurk in ambush and fly out unexpectedly, catching the victim by surprise. They prefer to explore their territory, consistently flying around its borders.

Little sparrowhawks hunt small birds, insects and small mammals.

Conservation status of the little sparrowhawk

The Lesser Sparrowhawk is considered a rare species in Siberia and Japan, but its numbers may be underestimated. Recently, this species of bird of prey has become more prominent, appearing even in the suburbs. In China, it is much more common than the Horsfield hawk (true soloensis hawks). The area of ​​distribution of the small sparrowhawk is estimated from 4 to 6 million square kilometers, and its total number is close to 100,000 individuals.

The Lesser Sparrowhawk is classified as the least threatened species.

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Chinese Sparrowhawk - Accipiter soloensis

see also 7.1.10. Genus Hawks - Accipiter

Chinese sparrowhawk - Accipiter soloensis

It is very similar to the male sparrowhawk, but the transverse pattern on the reddish-white underside is practically absent, the fingers are relatively short.

In flight, it is easily distinguishable by the color of the underside of the wing, white with a reddish front edge and a black tip, in adults it is completely free of streaks.

A very rare migratory pitchfork in the forests of South Primorye; nests were found only a few times in the vicinity of Vladivostok. Listed in the Red Book of Russia.

In the north of the Far East, the American Sparrowhawk Accipiter striatus can be found. It is larger than a pigeon, a male with red transverse stripes on the chest and a dark pattern on the head, like a peregrine falcon, the female is similar to a young goshawk, but smaller, on the tail there are three narrow and one wide transverse stripe.

Encyclopedia of the Nature of Russia. - M .: ABF. R.L. Boehme, V.L. Dinets, V.E. Flint, A.E. Cherenkov. 1998.

Chinese Sparrowhawk Accipiter soloensis

see also 7.1.10. Genus Hawks - Accipiter

Chinese sparrowhawk Accipiter soloensis

It is very similar to the male sparrowhawk, but the transverse pattern on the reddish-white underside is practically absent, the fingers are relatively short.

In flight, it is easily distinguishable by the color of the underside of the wing, white with a reddish front edge and a black tip, in adults it is completely free of streaks.

A very rare migratory pitchfork in the forests of South Primorye; nests were found only a few times in the vicinity of Vladivostok. Listed in the Red Book of Russia.

In the north of the Far East, the American Sparrowhawk Accipiter striatus can be found. It is larger than a pigeon, a male with red transverse stripes on the chest and a dark pattern on the head, like a peregrine falcon, the female is similar to a young goshawk, but smaller, on the tail there are three narrow and one wide transverse stripe.

Table 12

Encyclopedia of the Nature of Russia. - M .: ABF.

R.L. Boehme, V.L. Dinets, V.E. Flint, A.E. Cherenkov.

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