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Black Hawk-Eagle - BirdForum Opus

Spizaetus tyrannus
Photo by JorgePeru
National Reserve Pacaya Samiria, Iquitos, Peru, July 2007


In flight, the impression is dominated by the strong barring on wings and tail. The flight feathers near the body are shorter than those further out on the wing, making the jizz somethat butterfly-like.


Photo by Peter R. Bono (Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.)
Along Manu Road, above Pilcopata (760m), Peru, August 2008

From Mexico through Central America to Trinidad, Brazil and Argentina. Avoids larger mountains and in South America mostly east of the Andes.



Two subspecies are recognized[1]:

  • S. t. serus:
  • S. t. tyrannus:


Disturbed secondary humid forest at ca. 622 m (2,042 ft) elevation.


Mostly seen when soaring, often high above the canopy; sometimes gives its characteristic call when soaring.


Hunts from perches, from which it catches mammals and birds.


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Recording by Andrew Whitehouse


  1. Clements, JF. 2011. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to August 2011. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  2. BF Member observations

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