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Help with BOP identification

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Old Saturday 4th September 2010, 08:36   #1
canonrock
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Help with BOP identification

A few weeks ago as I was driving on a country rd between Strathalbyn and Goolwa ( for those who know the area ), I saw a largish black bird feeding on carrion in the middle of the road.Initially it looked like a Raven,so I didn't slow down as they always get off the road quickly. This bird was a little slow to move, but when it did I was fairly close,although I only saw it for a second.It was very dark when viwed from the rear,but as it took off , i could see that the wings were longer and narrower than a Raven and its underside was grey.Its tail was long and rounded and there was a light band underneath similar to a Black Cockatoo.As I realised that it wasn't a Raven,I was expecting it to be a Black Kite,but the tail and wings were all wrong.I am thinking immature Swamp Harrier,but not sure that they feed on carrion.Any thoughts ?
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Old Saturday 4th September 2010, 10:43   #2
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My first suggestion was going to be Black Kite, however the rounded tail certainly rules that out :P Swamp Harrier seems like a good assumption, going by the light band in the area of the tail. Birds in backyards says that Swampies in NZ often feed on carrion, so I'd say it wouldn't be unlikely to see one do the same here. Need more opinions on the ID though :P
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Old Saturday 4th September 2010, 20:58   #3
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Black kites with moulting outer retrices can often have tails which look rounded, so don't discard it too quickly.
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Old Sunday 12th September 2010, 13:31   #4
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How about a Black Falcon? I am thinking a Swamp Harrier is somewhat larger than a Raven and falcon wings are generally narrower than harrier wings. though the white bit's a bit off putting for a BF.
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Old Wednesday 15th September 2010, 02:44   #5
canonrock
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Funny you should mention Black Falcon,as I had given that some consideration.I have never seen a Black Falcon,and know little about them.I have seen hundreds of Black Kites,having lived in NT,where they are as common as Silver Gulls at Victor Harbor.I have also seen dozens of Swamp Harriers.Although I only really got a good glimpse of this bird,I was left with the feeling that it was a bird that i have not seen before. What are the chances of a Black Falcon eating carrion on a road in the middle of the day near Finness in SA ?
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Old Saturday 9th October 2010, 08:18   #6
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could be black falcon...i have read that blacks sometimes eat carrion...so you might have one there...any guess on the size?
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Old Sunday 10th October 2010, 05:51   #7
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Roughly Raven size but with longer,narrower wings
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Old Tuesday 12th October 2010, 10:04   #8
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So, it didn't have fingers in the wings?
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Old Saturday 16th October 2010, 08:42   #9
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Hard to say,only saw it for a second as it was taking off
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Old Monday 25th October 2010, 12:24   #10
mr_birdman
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A Black Kite would have the finger-like primaries. The BF would have thinner, more geometric, falcon wings I guess. I wish I saw it too, I'd tell you then for sure. But remember that a BF looks more black than a Black Kite. To me anyway and the Black Kite may have some yellow too around the face. Also the rounded tail is Black Falcon see here: http://birdsinbackyards.net/species/Falco-subniger

The Black Kite has a forked tail, often call it a Fork-tailed Kite! :)
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Old Saturday 13th November 2010, 09:28   #11
canonrock
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Thanks for the interest guys,
The BOP i saw could easily be a Black Falcon,but the truth is i didn't look at it for long enough to be sure.

Cheers
John
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Old Friday 26th November 2010, 22:17   #12
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Ah, too bad then. :( That'll teach ya for next time mate.
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