Wild life and nature of Samos, Ikaria & Fournoi

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Black Kite (Milvus migrans)


The Black kite has a wingspan of around 150 cm. They can be distinguished from Red kites by the slightly smaller size, less forked tail and generally dark plumage without any rufous. The upper plumage is brown, but the head and neck tend to be paler. The lower parts of the body are pale brown, becoming lighter towards the chin. The body feathers have dark shafts giving it a streaked appearance. The cere and gape are yellow, but the bill is black. They have a distinctive shrill whistle followed by a rapid whinnying call. Males and females have the same plumage, but females are longer than males.


The Black Kite can be found in various environments and can be found across Europe, Asia, Africa and Australia in temperate and tropical climates.


The Black Kite is known to feed on small live prey, fish, birds, bats and rodents.

Protection Status 

This species is listed as of Least Concern on the IUCN Red List.


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