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6

Square-tailed Kite

(Lophoictinia isura)
Aboriginal name(s): "mararl", "djedurnmalak" (WA)
Size: 50-55 cm; wing span 1.3-1.45 m

Similar species

Description     Classification     Distribution     Sightings     Photos     Breeding     Nest     Eggs     Behaviour     Food     Call/s

Physical description

Click here for a physical description

Taxonomy, classification

See Square-tailed Kite at Wikipedia .

Range, habitat, finding this species

Click here for information on habitat and range

Sightings

Click here for sighting information

Photos

ADULT

Lateral view of an adult Square-tailed Kite
[Eulah Creek, NSW, February 2013]

The same Square-tailed Kite as shown above, now with its head turned
[Eulah Creek, NSW, February 2013]

Square-tailed Kite in flight seen from underneath
[20 km South of Narrabri, NSW, March 2013]

Square-tailed Kite in flight seen from underneath
[Eulah Creek, NSW, December 2007]

Possibly the same Square-tailed Kite as shown above, almost two months later, now in a more lateral perspective
[Eulah Creek, NSW, January 2008]

Lateral view of the same Square-tailed Kite as shown above
[Eulah Creek, NSW, January 2008]

Breeding information

Breeding season: Aug - Nov Eggs: 2 - 3 Incubation period: 40 days Fledging age: ca. 63 days

Twitcher's tip

Note that, by the time they fledge (i.e., leave their nest), the young of all species of raptors - apart from the tail and wing feathers (which are still growing) - are already full adult-size.

Nest building: ? Incubation: Female Dependent care: Female & male

Nest

"bungobittah", "malunna" = nest [Aboriginal]

Type: Basket Material: Sticks, eucalypt leaf lining Height above ground: 10 - 30 m

Two mature Square-tailed Kite chicks on their nest (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Two mature Square-tailed Kite chicks on their nest, with a honeyeater as prey (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Location of the Square-tailed Kite nest shown above, high up in an eucalypt (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Female Square-tailed Kite on its nest near Baradine, NSW (photo courtesy of L. Cutts)
[Near Baradine, NSW]

View from a pair of Square-tailed Kites' aerie into the Pilliga scrub; this photo was taken from a different nest compared to above (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Two mature Square-tailed Kite chicks in the nest with the view shown immediately above (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Eggs

"boyanga", "booyanga", "derinya", "dirandil", "koomura", "ngampu", "nooluk", "pateena" = Egg; "dirundirri" = eggs [Aboriginal]; "gawu" = eggs [gamilaraay]

Size: 52 x 38 mm Colour: Creamy, speckled & streaked mid-brown Shape: Tapered oval

Two eggs in a Square-tailed Kite nest (photo courtesy of D. Johnston)
[Near Baradine, NSW, 1980ies]

Food, Diet

All raptors are carnivores. In addition to other prey, Square-tailed Kites take nestlings of smaller bird species, especially of various species of honeyeaters.

These pages are largely based on our own observations and those of our contributors. The structure of these bird pages is explained HERE. For more salient facts on any bird species please refer to a field guide.

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