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Sooty Falcon | Falco concolor

The Sooty Falcon is a Southern African bird that belongs to the Falconidae bird family group which includes birds such as Falcons.

The description for the Sooty Falcon (Latin name Falco concolor) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Falco concolor can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 175 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 553. You will find a picture of the Sooty Falcon on page 529.

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 Sooty Falcon between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Sooty Falcon is known in Afrikaans as Roetvalk.

The Sooty Falcon has a height of 36 cms and weighs around 210 gms. The head is coloured grey while the bill is coloured black. The Falco concolor has a grey coloured throat, yellow legs and a grey 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 grey

Eyes are brown

Bill is black

Legs are yellow

Throat is grey

Back is grey

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

The Falco concolor attacks smaller birds in flight and uses its sharp claws to break the bird's neck. Some of the birds are attacked in their nests while others are killed on the ground. The Sooty Falcon eats the eggs of its victim.

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

Breeding, Habitat and Nesting Habits ...

The bird is mainly found in the Savanna grasslands where it breeds and feeds.

The Sooty Falcon is found in the Southern African wetlands, riverine forests and moist grasslands.

Seen in Flocks, Singles or Pairs Normally ...

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

The reference for the information following is "Roberts Birds of Southern Africa", 7th Edition * edited by PAR Hockey, WRJ Dean and PG Ryan, published by "The Trustees of the John Voelcker Bird Book Fund."

copyright: Tony Roocroft +27-11-454-0105

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