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Ovambo Sparrowhawk (Accipiter ovampensis) | by Rainbirder
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Ovambo Sparrowhawk (Accipiter ovampensis)

Technically a poor image but it's worth posting as this bird is scarce throughout most of its range.

This is a typical pale-phase immature showing the classical elongated body/small head appearance with a yellow-orange cere and legs, a pale supercilium and dusky ear-coverts. A good diagnostic feature when visible is the unique bizarrely-long spindly middle toe (this is never mentioned in field guides).

 

This image was taken in the Masai Mara in Kenya, a hotspot for this bird which is otherwise rare in East Africa. The image was taken at distance (too far for fill-flash) against an overcast but bright sky at midday requiring a 2 stop overexposure -hence the poor quality. Nonetheless this picture has made it into a few photographic field guides and a South African Raptor guide.

 

Framed by a friend.

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Taken on August 5, 2007