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Home » Information » Mountain Buzzard in Uganda (“Buteo oreophilus”)

Mountain Buzzard in Uganda (“Buteo oreophilus”)

Mountain Buzzard

What to Know About the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda?

The Mountain Buzzard in Uganda is one of the African Uganda Bird Species seen during Uganda birding safaris & Tours. It is a bird of prey in the family Accipitridae, that lives in montane forests in East Africa, particularly Bwindi impenetrable national park-Uganda.

This species occurs in montane forest and fragments of montane forest, including plantations of exotic trees such as eucalyptus.

The mountain buzzard has been classified as a subspecies of common buzzard, then split as a single species with the forest buzzard but nor these two are regarded as separate species.

How Does the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda Look Like?

A small buzzard and quite similar to the steppe buzzard, the migratory subspecies of the Palearctic common buzzard which winters over most of Africa.

The adult has brown upperparts with paler underparts with heavy brown blotches on the breast, belly, flanks and underwing coverts.

The underside of the flight feathers is barred with a distinct black band along the rear edge of the wing.

The tail is brown above, light grey below and shows faint narrow bars which are broadest just before the tail tip. Juveniles are buffier below and less heavily marked than the adults.

How Does the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda Feed?

The main prey consists of small mammals, reptiles, and insects which are caught after the bird sights them from an open perch before gliding down and capturing them. In Uganda this species has been recorded hunting bats at caves

How Does the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda Nest?

Mountain buzzards construct a stick nests in the upper fork of tall forest trees. In Uganda, nests with eggs have been reported from in January and March, while a nest with chicks have been reported in March, June and July.

How Does the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda Breed?

The mountain buzzard spends most of the day perched within the forest cover, but it can sometimes be seen soaring overhead. It is a territorial bird which is usually seen singly or in pairs.

There are no confirmed breeding records, but displaying pairs are most active in September and a juvenile can been seen in October.

How Does the Mountain Buzzard in Uganda Reproduce?

The female lays 3 to 4 eggs at a regular interval of 2 or 3 days. The male replaces the female if she leaves nest occasionally.

He brings preys and feeds her during incubation. He watches the site by flying permanently over the zone while hunting.

Incubation lasts about 35 days up to hatching of the last chick. Juveniles are covered with a brownish grey down, with a dark spot around the eyes, and white underparts. Some feathers come out after 12 days.

During the first days, chicks present quite different sizes, but the quantity of preys brought by the parents equalizes this discrepancy.

Nevertheless, there is always a chick that is much smaller than the others and that finishes to be trampled to death by the others.

At the age of one month, chicks can eat preys that are brought at the nest. Even after fledging, chicks remain very dependent on the parents until summer, when they break up. It seems that juveniles breed around age of two.

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