Time for some Raptors!

There's something unique about watching raptors. The aura around them immediately makes you feel something special is going on. From the smallest falcon to the largest eagle or vulture, I always get excited when I see them overhead. Or just standing there. This post is dedicated to the raptors I had the pleasure of observing in the last few weeks.

To start some pictures of a pair of young Black-Winged Kites engaged in an aerial fight:

Aerial Fight between two Black-Winged Kites


These beautiful raptors are relatively small, but also very aggressive. The red eyes combined with the stark black and white colors give them a fighter-jet like appearance, and they certainly behave that way!

From a bit closer, your can see the beauty of this raptor with more detail:

Black-Winged Kite in flight


Speaking of their aggressive behavior, below are some photos of the Black-Winged Kite driving off an Osprey, which is a much larger raptor. The Osprey was standing on a pole that the Kite perceived as his own - he usually stands there. You can see the huge contrast in sizes...

Osprey being attacked by Black-Winged Kite


Ospreys are incredible to watch. They're excellent fish catchers, grabbing fish out of the water with their claws. Then they find a quiet spot to eat the fish:

Osprey with catch


When done, they have time to contemplate their next move:

Osprey observing a flock of Glossy Ibises flying by


An even larger raptor is the Large Spotted Eagle, which I was very lucky to observe the other day.

Large Spotted Eagle in flight


This young specimen was standing on a wire so I could see the full size of him - his wingspan is close to 2 meters! What an impressive sight to see him flying. I recommend enlarging the pictures - it's a treat.

We were vising Eilat a few weeks ago, and on the way back home, in the Negev, we had a chance to see an even larger raptor, one of the largest in Israel:

Griffon Vulture in flight

This huge (wingspan of over 2.5 meters) raptor is majestic in flight. An amazing sight...

There were also a couple of Eagles there:

Two Eagles in flight

And with that, I'll wrap up this post. More raptors to come in the near future.

Let me know what you think in the comments or via email.