Great Black Hawk Buteogallus urubitinga

  • Order: Accipitriformes
  • Family: Accipitridae
  • Polytypic: 2 subspecies
  • Authors: John van Dort

Sounds and Vocal Behavior


The most frequent call of Great Black Hawk is a high-pitched, drawn-out (2-4 s) and mostly even scream, sometimes with voice breaks, given both by immatures and adults. This vocalization is quite different from the laughing call of Common Black Hawk Buteogallus anthracinus; it is more similar to calls of Solitary Eagle Buteogallus solitarius, but the scream of that species is lower-pitched. Great Black Hawk also gives an overslurred shorter call.

In the display flight, Great Black Hawk gives a long series of short calls, like this example from Venezuela or this example from Argentina. For ridgwayi, Gerhardt et al. (2012) mention a series of short repeated notes, ending with a slightly longer one, given by both adults during the nest building phase.

Additional audio recordings of vocalizations of Great Black Hawk can be heard at Macaulay Library and at xeno-canto.

Nonvocal Sounds

None reported.

Recommended Citation

van Dort, J. (2019). Great Black Hawk (Buteogallus urubitinga), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.