Hieraetus pennatus, Gm.
31. :- Aquila pennata, Gm. :- Jerdon's Birds of India, Vol. I, p. 63; Butler, Deccan and Southern Mahratta country; Stray Feathers, Vol. IX, p. 372 ; Murray's Vertebrate Zoology of Sind, p. 78; Hume's Scrap Book, p. 182.
THE DWARF EAGLE.
Length, 18.75 to 22; expanse, 49 to 53 ; wing, 15 to 16.5 tail, 8.25 to 9; tarsus, 2.3 to 2.5 ; bill from gape, 1.4.
Length, 19 to 24; wing, 15.5 to 16.5; tail, 9 to 9.25; tarsus, 2.8.
Bill bluish-black, pale blue at base ; cere bright yellow; irides pale brown ; legs and feet pale wax-yellow.
Head and neck pale orange-brown; the feathers lanceolate, and streaked in the centre with dark brown; some of the feathers lengthened, entirely brown, forming a rudimentary crest; a narrow superciliary stripe, and a band from the angle of the mouth below the ears, and a central stripe on the chin, dark brown; the rest of the upper plumage sepia-brown; the middle wing-coverts, and some of the scapulars, broadly edged with whitish-brown, forming a conspicuous light band on the wings; tail dark brown, with a pale tip, the inner webs of the feathers barred indistinctly; plumage beneath reddish-brown, palest on the feathers of the tarsi, and the feathers streaked with dark-brown.
The young bird is white beneath, head and neck also with white edges to the feathers and the brown of the upper parts lighter, and the white markings on the wing more distinct; the upper tail-coverts also are whitish, and the tail distinctly barred on both webs. There is very generally a white shoulder spot at all ages, and the forehead is white in some.
The Dwarf Eagle occurs sparingly throughout the district. It is, perhaps, less uncommon in the Deccan than elsewhere. The nest, composed of twigs, is generally built on a high tree ; the eggs, two in number, are similar to those of Milvus govinda, but are perhaps more highly colored. They may be looked for in February.