Long-legged Buzzard

Buteo rufinus

The Long-legged Buzzard is a bird of prey.
Buteo rufinus - Long-legged buzzard Captured in flight over Ponor mountain, Western Bulgaria Accipitridae,Accipitriformes,Animal,Animalia,Aves,Bird,Bird of prey,Bulgaria,Buteo rufinus,Chordata,Europe,Geotagged,Long-legged Buzzard,Long-legged buzzard,Nature,Ponor mountain,Spring,Wildlife

Appearance

It is similar in appearance to the Rough-legged Buzzard , but it is larger and more robust. This is one of the largest species of ''Buteo''. Length can range from 50 to 66 cm and wingspan from 115 to 160 cm . Females, at an average mass of 1.3 kg , are larger than males, at an average of 1.1 kg . There are many different colour forms, but usually Long-leggeds have a clear orange tint to the plumage, red or orange tail, pale head and largely white underwings. There is usually a distinctive black carpal patch and dark trailing edge to the wing. The rump and "trousers" are often dark or deep rufous. Plumage varies from ghostly pale individuals to very dark ones. Some plumages are almost similar to those of the Steppe Buzzard, the eastern subspecies of the Common Buzzard , but Long-legged Buzzards have longer wings and are more like Rough-Legged buzzards or even a small Aquila eagle.
Long-legged Buzzard hiding in a tree  Buteo rufinus,Chambal,Geotagged,India,Long-legged Buzzard,Winter

Distribution

It inhabits dry open plains of northern Africa, southeastern Europe, west and central Asia east to China, and across central India. Recent sightings indicate that there is a small population in the Apulian region of south-eastern Italy. Open, uncultivated areas, with high bushes, trees, cliffs or hillocks are favoured as nesting areas. Younger birds disperse north of breeding grounds and there are records from Northern Europe. The breeding population in Greece is around 60 pairs.



Reforestation in the Judean Mountains in Israel is displacing populations of the Long-legged Buzzard, and the species is moving into the Judean Foothills and competing with the Short-toed Snake Eagle there.
Long-legged Buzzard closeup  Buteo rufinus,Long-legged Buzzard

Habitat

It inhabits dry open plains of northern Africa, southeastern Europe, west and central Asia east to China, and across central India. Recent sightings indicate that there is a small population in the Apulian region of south-eastern Italy. Open, uncultivated areas, with high bushes, trees, cliffs or hillocks are favoured as nesting areas. Younger birds disperse north of breeding grounds and there are records from Northern Europe. The breeding population in Greece is around 60 pairs.



Reforestation in the Judean Mountains in Israel is displacing populations of the Long-legged Buzzard, and the species is moving into the Judean Foothills and competing with the Short-toed Snake Eagle there.
Long-legged Buzzard on ground  Buteo rufinus,Long-legged Buzzard

Food

It feeds mostly on small rodents, although it will also take lizards, snakes, small birds and large insects.

References:

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Status: Unknown
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Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionChordata
ClassAves
OrderFalconiformes
FamilyAccipitridae
GenusButeo
Species