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Plumbeous Kite Ictinia plumbea

  • Order: Accipitriformes
  • Family: Accipitridae
  • Monotypic
  • Authors: Hilary Yu

Diet and Foraging


Plumbeous Kite is an insectivore and typically feeds on large insects caught while in flight from the air (aerial hunts), and on insects or other prey captured after taking flight from a perch (perch hunts) (Seavy et al. 1997). Documented items in the diet include cicadas, beetles (Cetonidae, Elateridae, Hydrophilidae), dragonflies (Aeshnidae), orthopterans (Locustidae), lepidopterans, hemipteras (Fulgoridae, Pentatomidae), neuropterans (Ascalaphidae), hymenopterans (Formicidae, Vespidae, Apidae) and termites (Haverschmidt 1968, Seavey et al. 1997). At nest sites, more than 90% of the observed prey was composed of insects, about 6% were lizards, 1.1% snakes, 0.3% birds, 0.2% bats and 0.1% frogs (Seavy et al. 1997).

Foraging Behavior

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Recommended Citation

Yu, H. (2012). Plumbeous Kite (Ictinia plumbea), version 1.0. In Neotropical Birds Online (T. S. Schulenberg, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA.