This species qualifies as Near Threatened because the population size becomes moderately small during the periods between explosions in the rat population. There appears to be inadequate knowledge on key sites and habitat use by the core population, which may be sensitive to other threats when rat numbers are low.
Christidis, L.; Boles, W. E. 1994. The taxonomy and species of birds of Australia and its territories. Royal Australasian Ornithologists' Union, Melbourne.
Christidis, L.; Boles, W. E. 2008. Systematics and taxonomy of Australian birds. CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood, Australia.
Sibley, C. G.; Monroe, B. L. 1990. Distribution and taxonomy of birds of the world. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.
Chondrohierax uncinatus (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) has been split into C. uncinatus and C. wilsonii following Stotz et al. (1996), contra AOU (1998). Although AOU (1998), along with most other authorities, treat wilsonii as a subspecies of uncinatus, there has recently been a trend towards its recognition as a species (Raffaele et al. 1998, Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2005). Initial enquiry by the BirdLife Taxonomic Working Group suggests that all major sources are incomplete in their presentation of the characters that distinguish wilsonii from uncinatus such that the degree of differentiation is nowhere clear. Pending an urgent full study, it is felt that, on the basis of current understanding, and given the extremely precarious conservation status of wilsonii, the better present course is to maintain wilsonii as a separate species.
Small, pale kite, similar to Black-shouldered Kite Elanus caeruleus. Black spot in front of eye. Underparts white. Upperwing coverts and alula coverts black. Primaries dark grey. Tail white with central feathers tinged grey. Rest of upperparts pale grey. Underwing white to greyish white with black bar from axillaries to base of primaries. Iris red; bill black; cere horn-coloured; legs pink or whitish (Johnstone and Storr 1998).
Garnett, S. 1992. Threatened and extinct birds of Australia. Royal Australasian Ornithologists' Union and Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service, Moonee Ponds, Australia.
Johnstone, R. E.; Storr, G. M. 1998. Handbook of Western Australian birds, volume I: non-passerines (emu to dollarbird). Western Australian Museum, Perth, Australia.
Marchant, S.; Higgins, P. J. 1993. Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic birds, 2: raptors to lapwings. Oxford University Press, Melbourne.
Olsen, P. 1998. Australia's raptors: diurnal birds of prey and owls.
Olsen, P. D. 1995. Australian birds of prey. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland.
Further web sources of information
View photos and videos, and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection
Text account compilers
Garnett, S., Taylor, J.
Mathieson, M., Akers, D.
IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Symes, A.
BirdLife International (2013) Species factsheet: Elanus scriptus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 11/12/2013. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2013) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 11/12/2013.
This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.
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|Current IUCN Red List category||Near Threatened|
|Family||Accipitridae (Osprey, kites, hawks and eagles)|
|Species name author||Gould, 1842|
|Population size||670-6700 mature individuals|
|Distribution size (breeding/resident)||728,000 km2|
|Links to further information|
|- Additional Information on this species|