1205. Aquila maculata

1205. Aquila maculata.

The Large Spotted Eagle.

Falco maculatus, Gmel. Syst. Nat. i, p. 258 (1788). Aquila clanga, Pall. Zoogr. Bosso-Asiat. i, p. 351 (1811); Sharpe (A. maculate subsp.), Cat. B. M. i, p. 248; Gurney, Ibis, 1877, p. 329; Davids. & Wend. S. F. vii, p. 74; Ball, ibid. p. 197 ; Hume, Cat. no. 28; Bingham, S. F. viii,p. 190; Doig,ibid. p.370 ; Butler, S. F. ix, p. 372; Reid, S. F. x, p. 7 ; Oates, B. B. ii, p. 186; id. in Hume's N. & E. 2nd ed. iii, p. 138; Barnes, Birds Bom. p. 28 ; id. Jour. Bom. N. H. Soc. iii, p. 212; Hume, S. F. xi, p. 8. Aquila vittata, Hodgs. in Gray's Zool. Misc. p. 81 (1844), descr. nulla. Aquila naevia, Blyth, Cat. p. 27 ; Horsf. &c M. Cat. i, p. 45; Jerdon, B. I. i, p. 59; Hume, Rough Notes, p. 162 ; id. S. F. i, p. 158 ; Jerdon, Ibis, 1871, p. 244; Anderson, P. Z. S. 1871, pp. 686, 689; 1875, p. 22; Blyth, Birds Burm. p. 63; Butler, S. F. iii, p. 445 ; Walden, Ibis, 1876, p. 339. Aquila maculata, Brooks, S. F. iv, p. 268; Blanford, His, 1894, p. 287.

The Spotted Eagle, Jerdon ; Kaljanga, H.; Bukayari Jiyadha, Beng.; Nella gedha, Tel.

Coloration. Adult. Dark, almost blackish brown, with a slight purplish gloss on the mantle ; primary-quills black ; tail unbarred, but washed with grey towards the end above; head and neck all round paler, the tips, and sometimes broad shaft-stripes to the lanceolate feathers of the crown and nape, lighter brown; feathers on tarsus and upper and lower tail-coverts mixed with whitish, and sometimes chiefly white ; base of all feathers, including wing and tail-feathers, white.

Young birds are also dark brown, and differ chiefly from adults in having the upper back and smaller wing-coverts marked with elongate paler greyish-brown spots, these spots are largest and whitish on the smaller scapulars and median coverts; longer scapulars, larger coverts, and secondaries with large buff tips; lower back and rump pale brown, with dark edges to the feathers; Upper tail-coverts whitish; tail black, grey, or mottled towards the end and pale-tipped; lower plumage with light brown shaft-stripes varying in breadth and tint; vent and lower tail-coverts buff. Some birds are pale brown beneath.

Bill bluish grey, dusky at tip ; cere, gape, and feet orange-yellow. Irides brown (Hume). Nostrils round and large; plumage soft.

Length of a male about 26 inches; tail 10.5 ; wing 19.5; tarsus 4; bill from gape 2.5 : of a female—length 27.5; tail 11.5 ; wing 20.5.

Distribution. Throughout the greater part of the Palaearctic region. Common throughout India and Northern Burma in damp tracts near water; not found in Ceylon, and rare in Tenasserim.

Habits, &c. A sluggish bird, living chiefly on frogs in India, but occasionally preying on small mammals, lizards, &c. It breeds on trees from April to June in Northern India, and as far south as the Tapti, and appears to lay a single greyish-white egg, profusely spotted and blotched with yellowish brown, and measuring about 2.65 by 1.98. Elsewhere two to three eggs are said to be laid.

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: 
1205. Aquila maculata
Book Author: 
William Thomas Blanford
Page No: 
Common name: 
Large Spotted Eagle
Greater Spotted Eagle
Clanga clanga
Vol. 3
Term name: 

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