- Madagascar Serpent Eagle
Madagascar Serpent Eagle Conservation status Scientific classification Kingdom: Animalia Phylum: Chordata Class: Aves Order: Falconiformes
(or Accipitriformes, q.v.)
Family: Accipitridae Genus: Eutriorchis
Species: E. astur Binomial name Eutriorchis astur
The Madagascar Serpent Eagle, Serpentaire de Madagascar, or Culebrera Azor (Eutriorchis astur) is a species of bird of prey in the Accipitridae family. It is placed in the monotypic genus Eutriorchis. It is endemic to Madagascar.
The Madagascar Serpent Eagle is a medium-sized raptor with a long rounded tail and short rounded wings. It is dark grey on its back and a lighter grey on its belly, breast, and throat. Dark barring covers the bird's body. It has yellow eyes and a sharp, hooked beak with strong talons.
Distribution and habitat
Ecology and behavior
This serpent-eagle is diurnal. It eats snakes, lizards, and frogs, which they hunt from high perches, swooping down from it perch and grasping its prey in its talons when it spots it.
This species was believed to be extinct, with the last confirmed sighting being from 1930. However, sightings in 1977 and 1988 led to hope for the species' rediscovery. It was rediscovered in 1993 by the Peregrine Fund.
This species is threatened by the destruction of its specialized habitat and a presumed low rate of reproduction.
The prefix eu- is Greek for "good". Triorchis is a Latinization (Pliny the Elder) of Greek triórkhēs (τριόρχης), which Aristotle and Theophrastus used for a kind of hawk, possibly the Common Buzzard. The Greek word means "having three testicles". This erroneous bit of anatomy has been connected with the ease of mistaking a bird's adrenal gland for a testicle.
Astur is Latin for a kind of hawk.
- ^ Thomas M. Brooks, John D. Pilgrim, Ana S. L. Rodrigues & Gustavo A. B. Da Fonseca (2005). "Conservation status and geographic distribution of avian evolutionary history". In Andy Purvis, John L. Gittleman & Thomas Brooks. Phylogeny and Conservation. Conservation Biology. 8. Cambridge University Press. pp. 267–294. ISBN 9780521825023. http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=3W_TN0790vEC&pg=PA291.
- ^ BirdLife International 2004. Eutriorchis astur. 2006 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Downloaded on 24 July 2007.
- ^ a b c d e f g h "Madagascar Serpent Eagle". The Official World Wildlife Fund Guide to Extinct Species of Modern Times. 1. Beacham Publishing. 1997. pp. 13–14.
- ^ Pliny the Elder, Historia Naturalis, Book 10, Chapters 9, 95, 96. English translation from the Perseus Digital Library. Both retrieved on Nov. 16, 2007.
- ^ Liddell, Henry George; Scott, Robert (1940), A Greek-English Lexicon, http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0057%3Aentry%3D%23105095, retrieved 2007-11-15
- ^ Fisher, Peter; Higgins, Humphrey (translators) (1998), Olaus Magnus: A Description of the Northern Peoples, 1555, Hakluyt Society, p. 1011n, ISBN 090418059X, http://books.google.com/?id=iMQMAAAAYAAJ, retrieved 2007-11-15 . See Olaus Magnus and Historia de Gentibus Septentrionalibus
- ^ Lewis, Charlton T.; Short, Charles (1897), A Latin Dictionary, http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/cgi-bin/ptext?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.04.0059%3Aentry%3D%234196, retrieved 2009-01-15
Circaetinae Genus Terathopius Circaetus Spilornis EutriorchisMadagascar Serpent Eagle
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