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The Wildebeest's guide to South Africa

Bateleur

Afrikaans name: Berghaan

A pair in Kruger National Park

Bateleur

Photo © Steven Herbert

Terathopius ecaudatus

Whether it is perched or in flight the Bateleur is one of the most distinctive birds of prey. Visitors to game reserves such as Kruger National Park will be very familiar with them.

The Bateleur is found over most of the northern regions of South Africa. Its preferred habitats are savanna and bushveld.

One of the most distinctive features of these birds in flight is the way that they keep balancing left and right, very much in the way that a tight-rope walker does. The name "Bateleur" is actually the French word for a street performer. Bateleur has a wingspan of around 1.8 metres and they typically weigh just over 2 kg.

These raptors feed on a wide variety of small prey including mammals, birds, reptiles and frogs. They even been recorded catching fish in shallow waters.

Bateleurs may breed at any time of year. They only lay one egg and it is tended to by both parents.

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References and further reading

A Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: O.P.M. Prozesky - Year Published: 1983 - Page: 75

A First Guide to South African Birds - 6th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1959 - Page: 127

A First Guide to South African Birds - 7th Edition - Author: Leonard Gill - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 127

African Birds of Prey - Author: Leslie Brown - Year Published: 1970 - Page: 68

African Wildlife - A photographic safari - Author: Nigel and Wendy Dennis - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 92

An Introduction to the Birds of Prey of South Africa - Author: D.V. Prout-Jones - Year Published: 1974 - Page: 26

An Introduction to the Birds of Prey of South Africa - Author: D.V. Prout-Jones - Year Published: 1974 - Page: 98

Animals of the Kruger National Park - Author: G. de Graaff - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 66

Birds of Prey of Southern Africa - Author: Peter Steyn - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 129

Birds of Southern Africa - Kruger National Park - Author: Kenneth Newman - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 66

Birds of the Transvaal - Author: Tarboton, Kemp and Kemp - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 52

Collins Illustrated Checklist - Birds of Southern Africa - 1st edition - Author: Ber van Perlo - Year Published: 1999 - Page: 17

Eagle Days - Author: Peter Steyn - Year Published: 1973 - Page: 149

Eagles, Hawks & Falcons of the World - Author: Leslie Brown and Dean Amadon - Year Published: 1989 - Page: 351

Field Guide to the Birds of Kruger National Park - Author: Ian Sinclair and Ian Whyte - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 54

Ian Sinclair's Field Guide to the Birds of Southern Africa - 2nd Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair - Year Published: 1988 - Page: 74

Know your Birds of Prey - Author: - Year Published: - Page: 36

Newman's Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Year Published: 1984 - Page: 160

Newman's Birds of Southern Africa - 7th Edition - Author: Ken Newman - Year Published: 2000 - Page: 160

Questions and Answers - Birds of Southern Africa - Author: Deirdre Richards - Year Published: 1990 - Page: 30

Reader's Digest Illustrated Guide to the Game Parks and Nature Reserves of Southern Africa - 2nd edi - Author: Editor - Alan Duggan - Year Published: 1991 - Page: 409

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Dr. Austin Roberts - Year Published: 1949 - Page: 59

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 3rd Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Year Published: 1975 - Page: 102

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: McLachlan and Liversidge - Year Published: 1981 - Page: 108

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 5th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1985 - Page: 130

Roberts' Birds of Southern Africa - 6th Edition - Author: Gordon Lindsay Maclean - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 126

Sasol Birds of Prey of Africa and its Islands - Author: Alan and Meg Kemp - Year Published: 1998 - Page: 54

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 1st Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 1993 - Page: 88

Sasol Birds of Southern Africa - 4th Edition - Author: Ian Sinclair et al. - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 92

Southern African Bird Names Explained - Author: Charles Clinning - Year Published: 1989 - Page: 140

Southern Africa's Threatened Wildlife - Author: John Ledger - Year Published: 1990 - Page: 48

The Birds of South Africa - Author: Hazel Stokes - Year Published: 1979 - Page: 10

The Status & Conservation of Birds of Prey in the Transvaal - Author: W. Tarboton and D. Allan - Year Published: 1984 - Page: 59

Vanishing Eagles - Author: Philip Burton - Year Published: 1987 - Page: 46

Wildlife of Southern Africa - Author: Martin Withers and David Hosking - Year Published: 2011 - Page: 54

List of South African Birds

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