Graeme Chapman - natural history photographer - ornithologist

Australian Birds

Little Eagle
Hieraetus morphnoides
(Viewing 4 of 6 photos)

Little Eagles occur in two phases, a light phase which in flight, some people confuse with a Whistling Kite, and a dark phase which can be mistaken for other species as well. Little Eagles occur all over Australia, mainly in lightly wooded country above which they circle high in the sky surveyeying the landscape below. They prefer live prey and only occasionally resort to carrion. Small mammals, reptiles and large insects are included in the diet but rabbits form the major part. They prey on birds as well. For many of the larger birds such as crows and cockatoos, a Little Eagle circling above causes great consternation, verging on panic.

In recent times Little Eagles appear to be declining in number, possibly because in many areas rabbits have all but disappeared.

Photo: 225201

225201 ... Little Eagle, light phase.

Photo: 225202

225202 ... Little Eagle, dark phase.

Photo: 225203

225203 ... Two nestlings - usually only the larger one survives.

Photo: 225204

225204 ... Little Eagle light phase.

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