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Caspian

CASPIAN – AUGUR BUZZARD

Hatch Year: 1992
Arrival to WBS: 1992
Sex: Male
Reason for Residence: hatched in captivity

Caspian was bred and raised at World Bird Sanctuary in the propagation department, hatched to parents Tyler and Mowgli. He began as an education bird shortly after reaching maturity, mainly doing on-site programs. After a few years he was paired with a female Augur buzzard and moved to propagation, and even went to another facility to breed for a short period as well. Caspian has since returned to the education department, and flies in educational programs onsite!

His striking white and black colors coupled with his bright red tail wow guests, and his vocalizations are always a delight. Any naturalist can pick Caspian out of a group from his signature small bald spot on the back of his head, a feature that he has had from a very young age. Though the lack of feathers certainly do not detract from his charm!

SPECIES: AUGUR BUZZARD

CONSERVATION STATUS: LEAST CONCERN
Augur buzzards are one of the most numerous types of hawks in Africa.

Scientific Name: Buteo augur
Description: Augur buzzards come in two color phases — dark and light. Dark individuals are uniformly chocolate brown, while light phase birds have a dark hood and back with a bright white chest and stomach. Both color phases have a rusty, brick-red tail, yellow legs, and dark eyes.
Sex: Both sexes are similar, but the female is slightly larger than male.
Age: up to 25 years in the wild
Length: 19″-24″
Wingspan: 47″-59″
Weight: 31-41 oz.
Habitat: open or light wooded upland areas but can also range into lowland deserts at sea level and some more mountainous, precipitous areas of eastern Africa. They seem to prefer to hunt in elevated savanna grasslands, high moorland, cropland[6] sometimes into open forest or deserts as well.
Range: found in eastern and southwestern Africa

Behavior: Pairs have noisy aerial displays, including outside the breeding season. They are monogamous during the breeding season, and pairs may remain together for years. They build their nests on cliffs or in sturdy trees and lay 1-3 eggs.

Diet: strict carnivores and actively hunt a variety of animals, particularly reptiles.

Vocalization: a harsh, resonant crow-like a-kow a-kow a-kow or a-ung a-ung a-ung, drawn out as aerial display escalates into a longer, higher-pitched a-waaa a-waaa a-waaa

Fun Facts!
– In the Americas, the term “buzzard” generally refers to vultures, but in the Old World, the word’s original meaning was “hawk”.

– The Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League currently use an augur buzzard named Taima as a live mascot at games.

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