1207. Hieraetus fasciatus

1207. Hieraetus fasciatus.

Bonelli's Eagle.

Aquila fasciata, Vieill. Mem. Soc. Linn. Paris, ii, 1822, p. 152. Falco bonelli, Temm. Pl. Col. i, pl. 288 (1824). Aquila bonellii, Layard, A. M. N. H. (2) xii, p. 98; Horsf. & M. Cat. i, p. 46. Nisaetus grandis, Hodgs. J. A. S. B. v, p. 230 (1836); Jerdon, Ill. Ind. Orn. pl. 1, text. Nisaetus niveus, apud Jerdon, Madr. Jour. L. S. x, p. 69; Elliot ibid. p. 234 (1839); nec Falco niveus, Temm. Spizaetus grandis, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xii, p. 301. Eutolmaetus bonellii, Blyth, J. A. S. B. xiv, p. 174; xix, p. 335; id. Cat. p. 26; id. Ibis, 1866, p. 241; Hume, Rough Notes, p. 189; A. Anderson, P. Z. S. 1872, pp. 75, 273. Nisaetus bonellii, Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 67; Brooks, Ibis, 1869, p. 44. Nisaetus fasciatus, Sharpe, Cat. B. M. i, p. 250; Fairbank, S. F. iv, p. 253; Gurney, Ibis, 1877, p. 419; Davidson & Wend. S. F. vii, p. 74; Ball, ibid. p. 198; Hume, Cat. no. 33; Scully, S. F. viii, p. 224; Butler, S. F. ix, p. 372; Davidson, S. F. x, p. 288; Davison, ibid. p. 336; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 32; id. Jour. Bom. N. H. Soc. iii, p. 213; Oates in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 139. Pseudaetus bonellii, Hume, S. F. i, p. 158; iii, p. 446; Adam, S. F. ii, p. 338.

The Crestless Hawk-Eagle, Jerdon; Morangi, H.; Kundeli Salawa, Tel.; Rajali, Tam.

Coloration. Adult. Upper parts dark umber-brown, bases of feathers white; feathers of head and mantle inconspicuously dark-shafted; lores whitish, eyebrow streaked with white; sides of face white, the cheeks and ear-coverts streaked with brown ; quills black, mottled with white on inner webs towards the base; upper tail-coverts with whitish margins; tail-feathers dark grey above, whitish below, with imperfect black cross-bands and a broad black terminal one, the inner webs mottled with white, the extreme tip whitish; lower parts white, with black shaft-stripes varying in breadth; wing-lining blackish brown, except near the edge of the wing all round, where the feathers are partly white; thigh-coverts and lower abdomen whity brown or pale brown, still with black streaks ; under tail-coverts with pale rufous-brown cross-bars. Some old birds are buff or tawny beneath instead of white, and not unfrequently the thighs and abdomen are darker brown.

Young birds are paler above and have pale edges to the crown and nape-feathers, and the latter are sometimes rufous; the sides of the head and neck and the lower parts, including the wing-lining, light rufous or rufous-buff, with narrow dark stripes; the quills and tail banded almost throughout, the latter white at the base ; no broad terminal band to the tail.

Bill bluish grey, black towards the tip; cere and gape dingy yellow ; irides bright yellow or brownish yellow ; feet pale dingy whitish brown with a yellow tinge (Hume).

Length of male 27; tail 10; wing 19; tarsus 3.7; bill from gape 2.15: of a female—length 29; tail 11; wing 20.

Distribution. Southern Europe, Northern Africa, and South¬western Asia, ranging throughout the Indian Peninsula but not farther East. This bird has been only once obtained in Ceylon, but is not rare in the more hilly and jungly districts of Southern India. In the Punjab and N. W. Provinces, including the Hima¬layas, and in Sind it is generally distributed.

Habits, &c. This splendid Eagle lives on mammals and birds of its own killing, and is never known to touch carrion. Jerdon mentions that it is particularly destructive to pigeons. It is much seen on the wing sailing at a considerable height, at other times it perches on a high tree or rock. It breeds on cliffs and on trees, the former perhaps by preference, makes a large nest of sticks, and lays two eggs on a lining of green leaves. The eggs are greenish white, unspotted or faintly blotched and streaked with brown; they measure about 2.78 by 2.1, and are usually laid in the latter half of December, in January or in February.

The Fauna Of British India including Ceylon and Burma
Blanford, William Thomas, ed. The Fauna of British India: Including Ceylon and Burma. Vol.3 1895.
Title in Book: 
1207. Hieraetus fasciatus
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Page No: 
Common name: 
Bonellis Eagle
Bonelli's Eagle
Aquila fasciata
Vol. 3
Term name: 

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