Lesser Spotted Eagle | Aquila pomarina

Robert's Raptor (Bird Of Prey) Information: Lesser Spotted Eagle

The Lesser Spotted Eagle is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Accipitridae bird family group which includes birds such as Raptors, Old Vultures, Osprey.

Lesser Spotted EagleThe description for the Lesser Spotted Eagle (Latin name Aquila pomarina) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Aquila pomarina can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 134 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 530. You will find a picture of the Lesser Spotted Eagle on page 497.

NOTE: The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition*. This edition contained a number of taxonomic changes as well as changes to English names used traditionally and in earlier editions of most bird books in South Africa. The following paragraph notes such changes if any.

There have been no changes in the common name between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Lesser Spotted Eagle between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition.

The Lesser Spotted Eagle is known in Afrikaans as Gevlekte Arend.

The Lesser Spotted Eagle has a height of 65 cms and weighs around 1200 gms. The head is coloured brown while the bill is coloured black. The Aquila pomarina has a brown coloured throat, black legs and a brown coloured back. The eyes are brown.

Take note of the bird's main distinguishing features such as colour, size and leg length relative to the body size of the bird. Colours of a bird's body parts can be helpful. Be aware what may appear brown to one person is described in Roberts Birds using some other word ... for example brown, black. See colours used in Roberts.

Head is brown.

Eyes are brown.

Bill is black.

Legs are black.

Throat is brown.

Back is brown.

Photo's & Differentiating Between Male, Female & Juveniles

Please click the images below to make them larger:

Male Adult Adult south african lesser spotted eagle
Female Adult Same as above.
Juvenile Similar to above.
Non Breeding Plumage N/A

Lesser Spotted Eagle Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground.

The diet includes small mammals such as rabbits, field mice and other rodents. Rodents are usually taken from the ground and killed using the sharp claws. The Lesser Spotted Eagle uses its hard bill to tear up the flesh.

This bird eats insects such as butterflies, bees, wasps, locusts and ants. These invertebrates are usually hawked aerially, killed and then eaten.

Lesser Spotted Eagle Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The nest is built high up in the tree canopy and is protected from predators by branches and the dense green foliage.

The Lesser Spotted Eagle is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

This bird is usually seen in small family groups or in large flocks.