Crested Goshawk on a Tree Branch

Crested Goshawk on a Tree Branch

The crested goshawk is a bird of prey from tropical Asia. It is related to other diurnal raptors such as eagles, buzzards and harriers, and thus placed in the family Accipitridae.

This raptor has short broad wings and a long tail, both adaptations to manoeuvring through trees. It is 30–46 cm in length, with the female much larger than the male. The larger size and a short crest, clearly visible in profile, are the best distinctions from its relative, the besra (A. virgatus).

The male has a dark brown crown, grey head sides and black moustachial and throat stripes. The pale underparts are patterned with rufous streaks on the breast and bars on the belly. The larger female has a browner head and brown underpart streaks and bars. The juvenile has pale fringes to its head feathers, and the underpart background colour is buff rather than white.

The flight is a characteristic “slow flap, slow flap, straight glide”, similar to other Accipiter species such as the northern goshawk (A. gentilis).

The crested goshawk breeds in southern Asia, from India and Sri Lanka to southern China, Indonesia, Taiwan, and the Philippines. It is a Taiwanese endemic subspecies of birds. Distributed in the middle and low altitude forests and hills of Taiwan.

Video Source: 鳳頭蒼鷹/Crested Goshawk from Chuenguey Hwang on Youtube  CC BY