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This species's known range is considerably larger than once thought, and the use of playback techniques has demonstrated that it is not as rare as previously thought. Nevertheless, the species has a very small population, which is suspected to be undergoing a continuing decline as a result of the increasing destruction and fragmentation of its habitat through deforestation, and for these reasons it is listed as Endangered.
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.
66 cm. A medium-sized, secretive forest eagle. Rather dull, pale earth-brown above, with narrow, blackish barring in crown, nape, some ear-coverts, and wider black barring on the tertials, secondaries and primaries. Whitish below with wide irregular dark brown barring. Long tail, barred dark with paler margins to dark bars. Yellow eyes, stout bill but lacking tooth. Long, powerful, yellowish, heavily-scaled legs. Similar spp. Differs from Henst's Goshawk Accipiter henstii by paler earth-brown upperparts combined with horizontal breast-barring, inconspicuous dark bars in upperparts (especially tertials and on head), rather long tail, rather bulging head-shape with slight nape crest, and call. Voice Loud call, a far-carrying and measured wah...wah...wah...wah..., often followed by a lower rugh.
Collar, N. J.; Stuart, S. N. 1985. Threatened birds of Africa and related islands: the ICBP/IUCN Red Data Book. International Council for Bird Preservation, and International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, Cambridge, U.K.
Du Puy, D. J.; Moat, J. 1996. A refined classification of the primary vegetation of Madagascar based on the underlying geology: using GIS to map its distribution and to assess its conservation status. In: LourenÃ§o, W.R. (ed.), Proceedings of the International Symposium on the biogeography of Madagascar, pp. 205-218. ORSTOM, Paris.
Eames, J. C. 2010. Little-known African bird: Madagascar Serpent Eagle Eutriorchis astur. Bulletin of the African Bird Club 17(1): 99-101.
Langrand, O. 1990. Guide to the birds of Madagascar. Yale University Press, New Haven, USA.
Morris, P.; Hawkins, F. 1998. Birds of Madagascar: a photographic guide. Pica Press, Robertsbridge, UK.
Newton, I. 1979. Population ecology of raptors. T. and A. D. Poyser, Berkhamsted, U.K.
Peregrine Fund. 1997. Peregrine Fund Annual Report 1997. Peregrine Fund, Boise, USA.
Thorstrom, R.; RenÃ© de Roland, L.-A. 2000. First nest description, breeding behaviour and distribution of the Madagascar Serpent-Eagle Eutriorchis astur. Ibis 142: 217-224.
Thorstrom, R.; Watson, R. T. 1997. Avian inventory and key species of the Masoala Peninsula, Madagascar. Bird Conservation International 7: 99-115.
Wilcove, D. S. 1999. The condor's shadow: the loss and recovery of wildlife in America. WH Freeman, New York.
ZICOMA. 1999. Zones d'Importance pour la Conservation des Oiseaux a Madagascar.
Further web sources of information
Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species
Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Ekstrom, J., Evans, M., Shutes, S., Starkey, M., Symes, A., Taylor, J.
Hawkins, F., Réné De Roland, L., Thorstrom, R.
IUCN Red List evaluators
Butchart, S., Taylor, J.
BirdLife International (2015) Species factsheet: Eutriorchis astur. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/05/2015. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2015) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 23/05/2015.
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.
To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife
To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.
Additional resources for this species
|Current IUCN Red List category||Endangered|
|Family||Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles)|
|Species name author||(Sharpe, 1875)|
|Population size||250-999 mature individuals|
|Distribution size (breeding/resident)||17,300 km2|
|Links to further information|
|- Additional Information on this species|