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Birds of prey

Feathery predators - the most ruthless and skilful hunters of the bird's world. The bent claws and beaks these sharp-sighted air experts finish with the diversified extraction.

The Term "§шЁэ№х я=шч№" usually apply to representatives of group Falconiformes. this large group includes almost three hundreds various kinds, including eagles, hawks, kanjuki and falcons. But if all of them, undoubtedly, are among predators many other birds extracting livelihood by hunting, those are not. We will tell, pomornik and sorokoput too are fed with any living creatures, but neither that, nor is not considered another a predator. Even owls, with their acute eyesight and claws is not worse eagle, it is impossible to name true predators.

The matter is that these feathery do not have uniform distinctive feature for all. At the same time all birds of prey, being basically carnivorous, eat almost all kinds of animals - insects, birds, reptiles and mammals. Their powerful hooked beaks are perfectly adapted for razryvanija a live flesh.

Besides, almost all birds of prey actively hunt and kill extraction. But, unlike the majority of the carnivorous colleagues, they suffice a victim not a beak, and powerful sharp-clawed paws. An obvious exception of this rule are the Egyptian vultures eating only drop. Therefore and paws at them are weaker, and beaks are frequently blunted on the end.

At the same time all birds of prey, not excepting Egyptian vultures, are active only in the afternoon. However, some kinds like belozobogo the falcon fly and in twilight, but nobody hunts in full darkness. Therefore birds of prey often name day predators, unlike the owls hunting at night.

Birds of prey are extended worldwide and meet on all continents, except Antarctic. Separate kinds have managed to adapt to the most different spheres of dwelling - from mountain tops to vereskovyh heathlands, from rainforests to snow-covered tundra.


Many birds of prey do not live all year long on one place. Some have learnt to migrate, escaping from severe winter, others with revolution of the season wander from one hunting grounds in others. For example, ordinary osoed and steppe pustelga which diet is rich with insects, in the summer often fly on the north where forage there is more. But with approach of winter when insects becomes less, they after the sun come back to the south.

In a way behind extraction

Birds of prey Some predators hunting on other birds, wander together with a seasonal migration of the extraction. We will tell, cheglok Eleonory even postpones for later deducing of posterity that baby birds hatched when in the sky of their native Mediterranean will be full small birds of passage. Other kinds, for example, the falcon-sapsan, fly only on some kilometres between nesting places in mountains and winter quarters at coast.

During flights predators avoid extensive water spaces. The matter is that they are perfectly adapted for soaring, but are insufficiently hardy long to wave wings. Different predators in perfection have seized almost all receptions of aerobatics, and about a manner of flight or hunting of this or that bird much can be learnt under the form of its wing.

At all birds of prey long wide wings with a powerful carrying power. For example, kondory, signature stamps and eagles can almost without efforts long soar in ascending streams nagretogo air. Day after day they spend on a wing, methodically surveying vicinities in search of a forage. One of the most surprising winged predators - an eagle-buffoon. Wingspan of the adult buffoon reaches almost 2 metres, but in flight, it seems almost beshvostym. Compelled to fly about the huge areas in search of drop, the buffoon is capable to accelerate momentum to 80 km/hour. Sharp change of a direction is reached by change of an angle of slope of a wing in the manner of sea birds. The buffoon skilfully uses the slightest movement of air, being limited to rare waves of wings.

the Thunder-storm of sparrows

Birds of prey At such predators, as a hawk-perepeljatnik, beating extraction in years, as a rule, shorter, rounded off wings and long tails. Such form of a body gives an optimum combination of speed and manoeuvrability. Often perepeljatnik by a whirlwind it is carried by along a green hedge, vspugivaja the bird's trifle, and one lightning blow snatches out and kills a victim. But the most skilful masters of air hunting are falcons. Among birds of prey it is not present equal on speed of flight. Often write that the falcon-sapsan in a pursuit of extraction is capable to accelerate momentum to 300 km/hour. Sapsan almost always attacks a victim - usually a pigeon or a turtle-dove - from above, diving from height of 15-18 m and putting to claws a mortal blow. As well as the hawk-perepeljatnik, it is capable to seize and kill a small bird immediately hurriedly. To larger extraction killed by only one force of blow, he allows to fall to the ground. However in active flight the title of the falcon champion on speed belongs, apparently, ordinary chegloku. The graceful wings of this tiny predator cut back allow it to force down hurriedly swallows and martins.


Pustelga, perhaps, most known of all feathery predators, wishes to bring down as required hurriedly a small bird. But is more often she resorts to the reception which has nicknamed it "windhover" ("ярЁ Ёр  on тх=Ёѕ") . Almost motionlessly having hanged in the sky on widely open peaked wings and a fan having dismissed a tail, it looks out in a grass polevok and other living creatures. Speed of flight it perfectly adapts to speed of a head wind. Having noticed a victim, pustelga puts wings and a stone falls upon it from the sky with the let out claws. Perfect ability to track down, seize, kill and immediately to devour still live extraction has transformed the majority of predators into terrible hunters. But not to take away, each other the livelihood, different kinds of birds of prey adhere to various menus. The "ёяхчшрышчрчш " is even at Egyptian vultures eating drop. For example, ushastye signature stamps are capable to dissect the heavy beak a thick skin of large animals and to tear off pieces of the tough meat. But white-headed sipy, having waited, when the hulk will be opened, eat interiors.

The Small Egyptian Egyptian vulture has learnt to split ostrich's eggs, throwing in them stones. And sharp though and not such strong beak helps it to select scraps of other, larger colleagues.

the Gratuitous entertainment

Egyptian vultures - not unique fans fell. Very few people from feathery predators will miss an opportunity to feast on darmovshchinu. But in the majority they actively hunt and kill extraction by the weapon granted by the nature - a beak and claws. And like the Egyptian vultures who have acquired different ways of feeding not to compete, with each other, everyone lovchaja a bird hunts in own way. Moreover, as females are frequently much larger than males, rivalry between floors decreases even. We will tell, females of a hawk-perepeljatnika often hunt for ouzels and fat pigeons whereas smaller males catch titmouses and vjurkov.

the Winged fisher

With Curious anatomic features it is allocated skopa. At it not only sharp as needles, claws, but even small pillows on paws have a rough needle surface, helping to keep it is masterful the fish snatched out from water. An originality skopy and that one finger on a paw has a mobile joint thanks to what two fingers are bent forward, and two - back that it is better to keep the slippery big fish.

At the majority of birds of prey three fingers on paws look forward, and one back and though all of them are supplied by sharp claws, the back finger puts to a victim kinzhalnyj "ѕфрЁ ьшыюёхЁфш ". At the predators hunting on other birds, paws and claws is usually longer, that it is more convenient to suffice a victim whereas at the African falcon-lunja, the hunter of the land extraction, the paws supplied with two joints, allow to pull out a victim from the deepest crack.

Marriage rituals

Many winged predators show miracles of aerobatics and in attempts to captivate the partner. These air shows usually accompanied by raised shouts, are often similar to serious hunting when one bird flies on the partner, as if on extraction. Some falcons arrange pair flights at which one drops a titbit, and another hurriedly picks up it. The enamoured couple can even be linked by claws and together somersault in air nearly to the earth, having uncoupled during the latest moment and again soaring up in height. During a season of pairing birds of prey often become jealous guards of the territory, expelling all contenders. Sometimes the uninvited visitor of the same kind can be killed and eaten larger female of the pair which have located here.

Ways and nesting places as much, how many and kinds. Many predators nest on natural eminences, say, on ledges of rocks, or even in another's nests. Others build own huge careless nests, as a rule, on a top of a high standing alone tree.

Young growth

The Number of eggs in a laying can fluctuate from 1 to 6, and, the more largely a bird, the it is less than eggs. Nasizhivanie at once, therefore, if in a laying some eggs always begin, baby birds are born at various times.

In comparison with the majority of other birds, baby birds of predators develop rather slowly. The food to baby birds is extracted by both parents, but the female feeds them usually only. At first the forage for kids is broken off slices by parents, but in process of growth baby birds learn to do it. operjajutsja baby birds too slowly. First they are very clumsy, and the first flights come to an end with falling more often. As a result parents still for a long time should feed the offsprings after the first showdown. Adults, apparently, train baby birds in skills of hunting, bringing it live extraction and departing, away, and to catch its baby bird should itself. Only having acquired all necessary skills and having learnt to hunt independently, the young predator finds definitive independence.


you Know?

  • Owls, with their sharp beaks and claws, nevertheless do not consist related to birds of prey. It is considered to be that owls have occurred from birds of type of a goatsucker whereas the ancestor of predators considers a certain prototype of a stork.
  • predators usually swallow Small extraction entirely. Their exclusively concentrated gastric juice is capable to dissolve even bones of a victim, and the wool and feathers are belched in the form of lumps later.
  • the Falcon-sapsan - the most widespread bird in the world.
  • the Palm signature stamp differs from other colleagues that its diet includes a lot of vegetative food - basically, palm nuts - and dead fish.
  • Visual acuity pustelgi approximately in eight times above the human.
  • the largest winged predator - andsky kondor which wingspan exceeds 3 m.
  • the smallest - the dwarfish falcon, size 16 sm, i.e. It is no more zjablika.