Trivia question for Jun-14-2011

Posted on Jun 14, 2011 in Trivia

Olivia’s turn again and she picked a cool looking bird for her trivia.  These guys indulge in dramatic courtship flights – the male makes spectacular 360-degree rolls in midair.

This is a common resident species of the open savanna country in Sub-Saharan Africa. It nests in trees, laying a single egg which is incubated by the female for 42 to 43 days, with a further 90 to 125 days until fledging. They pair for life, and will use the same nest for a number of years. Unpaired birds, presumably from a previous clutch, will sometimes help at the nest.  The eagle hunts over a territory of 250 square miles a day. The prey of this raptor is mostly birds, including pigeons and sandgrouse, and also small mammals; it also takes carrion. They are generally silent, but on occasions it produces a variety of barks and screams.

So here are Olivia’s questions:  Tell us what kind of bird this is and what is so unique about their flying and maneuvering style compared to most birds.  Also, tell us where the name of this bird comes from and what it means?

Good Luck 😉


Congratulations to Leesa from South Africa for being the first with the correct answer.  The cool bird we featured is the Bateleur.  The Bateleur is a medium-sized eagle similar to many other diurnal raptors such as buzzards, kites and harriers. It is the only member of the genus Terathopius and probably the origin of the “Zimbabwe bird”, national emblem of Zimbabwe.

These birds have an extraordinary large wingspan and a short tail which gives this bird a unique style; it turns by banking like an aircraft, rather than using it tail as a steering rudder.

“Bateleur” is French for “tight-rope walker”, or “circus performer”.  This name describes the bird’s characteristic habit of tipping the ends of its wings when flying, as if catching its balance.

In some countries, outside of its natural distribution, the Bateleur is occasionally known as the “Conifer Eagle” or even “Pine Eagle”, since its feathers somewhat resemble a conifer cone when it fluffs itself up.  Here is more on these birds: Bateleur

Thanks for playing along 😉