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Subject: Black kite & its prey, a tern ... [Print This Page]

Author: madcat    Time: 21/04/2014 18:39     Subject: Black kite & its prey, a tern ...

2014-04-21 Shui Hau, Lantau Island

It was a butterfly watching day for me today but it ended up in witnessing this unexpected hunt ...

A gull-billed tern suddenly came out from the mangrove in front of me ~


Then a Black kite started chasing it ~



I didn't think it was a hunt until the tern got caught ~



Good job BK and RIP GBT.

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Author: kmike    Time: 21/04/2014 20:33

Gull Billed Tern is rare on Lantau - a very good , if sad, record.
Cheers
Mike
Author: John Holmes    Time: 21/04/2014 21:15

Very unusual to see a Black Kite actually kill anything, great capture !
Author: wilsondring    Time: 22/04/2014 07:20

i have always wondered why the birds get so worried when they see a black kite overhead at MP .. i have never seen them catch anything or make a kill .. now i can understand ..

RIP ..

nice series ..
Author: wcaptain    Time: 22/04/2014 10:13

Wow, wonderful....

I guess the majority of Black Kites are "opportunistics ", not a true predator.

The tern may be sick or an elderly. So it may get lost. An easy prey for the Black Kite.

It may be too difficult for the BK to capture the tern if it is a healthy individual.
Author: ajohn    Time: 22/04/2014 13:02

Black Kites have taken up hunting shorebirds at Mai Po, although they are certainly not expert hunters like peregrines. There are reports of them catching Black-tailed Godwits and Avocets, so it seems they can take on reasonable size prey. This is probably the reason that the shorebirds (especially medium-large species) are now generally quite easily flushed when they see a kite.
There has been a pair of kites nesting near the reserve for the past two years, and these seem to be the birds responsible for chasing shorebirds. I wonder whether active hunting is commoner among breeding kites, when there is an increased pressure to find food for growing chicks?
Author: wilsondring    Time: 22/04/2014 23:39

Quote:
Original posted by ajohn at 22/04/2014 13:02
Black Kites have taken up hunting shorebirds at Mai Po, although they are certainly not expert hunters like peregrines. There are reports of them catching Black-tailed Godwits and Avocets, so it seems ...
they are paranoid now .. i saw them get flashed by the low flying black-capped Kingfisher LOL
Author: John Holmes    Time: 1/05/2014 18:03     Subject: Black Kite with Avocet prey

Mai Po Boardwalk, 24th April 2014

Just illustrate what John A. was saying, here's a Kite with the remains of an Avocet in its' claws.

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