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Red-footed Falcon | Falco vespertinus

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

The description for the Red-footed Falcon (Latin name Falco vespertinus) can be found in the 7th Edition of the Roberts Birds of Southern Africa. The Falco vespertinus can be quickly identified by its unique Roberts identification number of 179 and the detailed description of this bird is on page 551. You will find a picture of the Red-footed 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.

This bird is known as Western Red-footed Kestrel in the Roberts 6th Edition. There have been no changes in the Latin name for the Red-footed Falcon between the Roberts 6th and Roberts 7th Edition

The Red-footed Falcon is known in Afrikaans as Westelike Rooipootvalk.

The Red-footed Falcon has a height of 31 cms and weighs around 155 gms. The head is coloured blue, grey while the bill is coloured grey. The Falco vespertinus has a white, grey coloured throat, orange legs and a blue, grey coloured back. The eyes are brown.

The male Falco vespertinus has physical features that are slightly different from the female bird.

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 blue, grey

Eyes are brown

Bill is grey

Legs are orange

Throat is white, grey

Back is blue, grey

Feeding Habits ...

This bird forages for food on the ground

The Falco vespertinus attacks its prey aerially and feeds on wing or takes the prey to a secluded venue where it is killed, torn into small pieces and eaten

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 Red-footed Falcon is mainly found in light and densely wooded forests, where there are Mopane trees.

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

The bird is found in the African bushveld

This bird is very common in most of the Southern African Forests

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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