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Long-tailed Hawk
Urotriorchis macrourus

Status: Lower risk

Population Trend: Unknown.

Other Names: African Long-tailed Hawk, Long-tailed Goshawk

Urotriorchis macrourus
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Distribution: Afrotropical. Eastern SIERRA LEONE, LIBERIA, and southeastern GUINEA east to western TOGO and from western NIGERIA and CAMEROON to southwestern CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC, CONGO, and extreme western UGANDA. more....

Subspecies: Monotypic. more....

Taxonomy: Wolters (1978) combined this monotypic genus with Accipiter, and others have suggested a relationship to Kaupifalco and Melierax.

Movements: Probably non-migratory.

Habitat and Habits: Occurs in the canopy and middle strata of undisturbed forest, secondary forest, and adjacent riparian forests, but also often seen near villages, tracks, and clearings (Borrow and Demey 2001). According to Allan (2000), it is secretive, but widely recorded from primary forest, and it appears to be restricted to large tracts of dense forest, although it regularly occurs at the the edges of clearings; intolerant of secondary habitats. Hunts from 5-40 m in primary forest and 1-20 m in secondary forest (Gatter 1997).

Food and Feeding Behavior: Preys on small mammals (squirrels) and birds, apparently mainly on tree trunks and in foliage. Also raids poultry.

Breeding: Only two nests have been described. Rainey and Sinclair (2003) found a nest in Taï National Park, Ivory Coast on 10-11 April 1994 located 20-25 m high in the mid-upper canopy. the nest was a flat, shallow structure, and it contained at least a single downy young. The same authors reported a pair building another nest in Mont Péko National Park, Ivory Coast on 15 March 2001. This nest was located 35 m high in a Cotton Tree (Ceiba pentandra) and also a flat structure placed on a branch where it forked from the trunk. In eastern Liberia, adults were feeding full-grown young on 18 January 1983 at Zwedru, and a fledgling was recorded on 12 December 1983 at Ziatown (Gatter 1997).

Conservation: Widespread and possibly common, but little known because of its secretive habits. It probably suffers in some areas from habitat fragmentation and loss (Allan 2000). That author suspected that this species had declined considerably throughout much of West Africa, but it is categorized globally as a species of "Least Concern" by BirdLife International.

Important References: 
Allan, D.G. (compiler). 2000. Urotriorchis macrourus Long-tailed Hawk. Pp.
  77-78 in G.H. Verdoorn, K.L. Bildstein, and S. Ellis (eds.).
  Selected African Falconiformes conservation assessment and management plan.
  IUCN/SSC Conservation Breeding Specialist Group, Apple Valley, MN.
Brown, L.H., E.K. Urban, and K. Newman. 1982. The birds of Africa. Vol. 1.
  Academic Press, London.
Demey, R., and L.D.C. Fishpool. 1998. On the existence of a melanistic
  morph of the Long-tailed Hawk Urotriorchis macrourus. Bulletin of the
  British Ornithologists' Club 118:105-108.
Ferguson-Lees, J., and D.A. Christie. 2001. Raptors of the world. Houghton
  Mifflin, Boston, MA.
Kemp, A.C. 1994. Long-tailed Hawk. P. 164 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.
Lerner, H.R.L., M.C. Klaver, and D.P. Mindell. 2008. Molecular
  phylogenetics of the buteonine birds of prey (Accipitridae). Auk
Louette, M. 2007. Moult patterns in the Long-tailed Hawk Urotriorchis
. Ostrich 78:577-582.
Mlikovsky, J. 1999. Note on the osteology and taxonomic position of the
  African Long-tailed Hawk Urotriorchis macrourus (Aves: Accipitridae).
  Bulletin of the British Ornithologists' Club 119:32-37.
Rainey, H., and I. Sinclair. 2003. First nests of Long-tailed Hawk
  Urotriorchis macrourus in Ivory Coast. Malimbus 25:56-58.
Wolters, H.E. 1978. Accipiter (Urotriorchis) amadoni nom. nov. Bonner
  Zoologische Beiträge 29:440.

Last modified: 5/14/2012

Recommended Citation: Global Raptor Information Network. 2022. Species account: Long-tailed Hawk Urotriorchis macrourus. Downloaded from http://www.globalraptors.org on 23 Jan. 2022

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