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Northern Philippine Hawk-eagle
Nisaetus philippensis

Status: Endangered

Population Trend: Declining.

Other Names: Philippine Hawk Eagle, Philippine Hawk-eagle, Spizaetus philippensis,

Nisaetus philippensis
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Distribution: Indomalayan. Endemic to Luzon Island, PHILIPPINES. more....

Subspecies: Monotypic.

Taxonomy: Based on molecular evidence and morphological differences, Gamauf et al. (2005a, 2005b) recommended separating hawk-eagles in the southern Philippines from the Luzon Island population, and they are followed here, with the latter population retaining the name philippensis. Preleuthner and Gamauf (1998) had earlier shown that there are distinct morphological and plumage pattern differences between the two forms. Traditionally placed in the genus Spizaetus, but recent molecular studies by Helbig et al. (2005) showed that the Asian hawk-eagle species represent a different lineage from the New World hawk-eagle species and should therefore be assigned to a new genus for which the name Nisaetus Hodgson 1836 is available. The same conclusion was reached independently by Lerner and Mindell (2005), based on the molecular sequences of one nuclear and two mitochondrial genes. Gamauf et al. (2005b) and Haring et al. (2007) also confirmed that Asian Spizaetus (Nisaetus) species are monophyletic, and are distributed in two sub-clades, one of which consists of N. cirrhatus, N. philippensis, N. pinskeri, and N. lanceolatus. more....

Movements: Non-migratory, but juveniles disperse from breeding areas (Bildstein 2006).

Habitat and Habits: Occurs in forest and advanced second-growth from lowlands to over 1,900 m in montane mossy forest (Kennedy et al. 2000). Perches in concealed locations in canopy and often soars (Kennedy et al. op cit.).

Food and Feeding Behavior: Prey not recorded (Kennedy et al. 2000).

Breeding: Nest and eggs are undescribed (Kennedy et al. (2000).

Conservation: BirdLife International does not accept the separation of southern Philippine populations as N. pinskeri, but designates the combined populations as Vulnerable. As treated here, the separate species should probably be classified as Endangered. Both taxa are suffering from continuing habitat loss in many parts of their respective ranges and also from hunting and trapping pressure (BirdLife International 2009).

Population Estimates: Ferguson-Lees and Christie (2001) estimated the global population of the N. philippensis, including the populations now assigned to N. pinskeri, as being in the range of 1,001 to 10,000 individuals. Gamauf et al. (2005) pointed out that splitting the hawk-eagle populations of the Philippines into two species would lead to lower estimates of their respective population sizes, which they estimated at 200-220 pairs for N. philippensis on Luzon and 320-340 pairs for N. pinskeri on Mindanao (Preleuthner and Gamauf 1998). BirdLife International (2009) concluded that this leads to a global population estimate for the combined populations of 1,000 to 2,500 individuals.

Important References: 
BirdLife International. 2000. Threatened birds of the world. Lynx
  Edicions, Barcelona, Spain, and BirdLife International, Cambridge, UK.
Clark, W.S. 1994. Philippine Hawk-eagle. P. 204 in del Hoyo, J., A.
  Elliott, and J. Sargatal (eds). Handbook of birds of the world. Vol. 2. New
  World vultures to guineafowl. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.
Ferguson-Lees, J., and D.A. Christie. 2001. Raptors of the world. Houghton
  Mifflin, Boston, MA.
Gamauf, A., M. Preleuthner, and W. Pinsker. 1998. Distribution and field
  identification of Philippine birds of prey: Philippine Hawk Eagle Spizaetus
and Changeable Hawk Eagle Spizaetus cirrhatus. Forktail
Gamauf, A., J.-O. Gjershaug, N. RÝv, K. KvalÝy, and E. Haring. 2005a.
  Species or subspecies? The dilemna of taxonomic ranking of some South-East
  Asian hawk-eagles (genus Spizaetus). Bird Conservation International
Gamauf, A., J.-O. Gjershaug, N. RÝv, K. KvalÝy, and E. Haring. 2005b.
  Molecular phylogeny of hawk-eagles (genus Spizaetus). Zoologische
  Mededelingen Leiden 79-3(21):179-180.
Haring, E., K. KvalÝy, J.O. Gjershaug, and A. Gamauf. 2007. Convergent
  evolution and paraphyly of the hawk-eagles of the genus Spizaetus (Aves,
  Accipitridae) -- phylogenetic analyses based on mitochondrial markers.
  Journal of Zoological Systematics and Evolutionary Research 45:353-365.
Helbig, A.J., A. Kocum, I. Seibold, and M.J. Braun. 2005. A multi-gene
  phylogeny of aquiline eagles (Aves: Accipitriformes) reveals extensive
  paraphyly at the genus level. Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution
Kennedy, R.S., P.C. Gonzales, E.C. Dickinson, H.C. Miranda, Jr., and T.H.
2000. A guide to the birds of the Philippines. Oxford University
  Press, Oxford, UK.
Preleuthner, M., and A. Gamauf. 1998. A possible new subspecies of the
  Philippine Hawk-eagle (SpizaŽtus philippensis) and its future prospects.
  Journal of Raptor Research 32:126-135.

Sites of Interest:
Red Data Book Threatened Birds of Asia
Detailed information on status, threats, and conservation measures.
Philippine Hawk-eagle photos.

Delos Santos, Johannes
Gamauf, Anita
Gjershaug, Jan Ove
IbaŮez, Jayson

Last modified: 2/17/2011

Recommended Citation: Global Raptor Information Network. 2020. Species account: Northern Philippine Hawk-eagle Nisaetus philippensis. Downloaded from http://www.globalraptors.org on 6 Jul. 2020

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