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The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Yellow-billed Kite

Afrikaans name: Geelbekwou

Yellow-billed Kites have a distinctive shape in flight

Yellow-billed Kites have a distinctive shape to their tail in flight

Photo © Steven Herbert

Milvus aegyptius parasitus

The Yellow-billed Kite is regarded by many scientists as a sub-species of the Black Kite Milvus migrans.

Yellow-billed Kites breed in South Africa during summer but migrate north during winter. They start arriving back during August.

In many areas they are a common sight during summer. In fact they are the 'hawk' that many people are familiar with. They have a slow flight and swivel their tails a lot.

Yellow-billed Kite

Photo © Steven Herbert

Those that regard them as 'hawks' want to lock up their pets when they are around for fear that they will be carried off. In reality they eat insects and small mammals. Road kill is a favourite of theirs.

The Yellow-billed Kite is found in most areas, apart from those that are really arid.


References and further reading

A First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 126

Animals of the Kruger National Park - Author: G. de Graaff - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 69

Birds of Prey of Southern Africa - Author: Peter Steyn - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 41

Birds of Prey of Southern Africa - Author: Peter Steyn - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 43

Birds of the Natal Drakensberg Park - Author: Robin Little and William Bainbridge - Year Published: 1992 - Page: 14

Birds of the South Western Cape - Author: Joy Frandsen - Year Published: - Page: 50

Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 14

Eagles, Hawks & Falcons of the World - Author: Leslie Brown and Dean Amadon - Year Published: 1989 - Page: 262

Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 50

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 107

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 104

Suburban Wildlife in KZN - Author: Jason Londt - Year Published: 2009 - Page: 116

The Status & Conservation of Birds of Prey in the Transvaal - Author: W. Tarboton and D. Allan - Year Published: 1984 - Page: 22

List of South African Birds

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