Bird Species of the World's Boreal Forests


Buteo lagopus
Booted Eagle


Booted Eagle Distinguishing Features - A small eagle, about the size of the Common Buzzard Buteo buteo. In its pale phase the adults have brownish-black flight feathers contrasting with white under side. Immatures are paler rufous below than Bonelli's Eagle Hieraeetus fasciatus. The legs are a contrasting buff colour and appear "boot-like", hence the name "Booted Eagle".


The Booted Eagle breeds from southern Europe, eastwards to south Asia and southwestern Russia; a woodland bird, inhabiting both deciduous and coniferous timber, generally in mountainous country; also on plains at sea level.


Birds up to the size of a Partridge; small mammals; also small reptiles such as lizards.


When hunting the bird soars over open country or woodland and generally catches its prey on the ground with a fast stoop from height. It may be able to surprise birds on tree branches by its swift dives into the foliage from above. It hunts far more on the wing than do buzzards, which helps to identify it, and pairs often hunt close together.

The normal calls include a high-pitched double whistle `ki-keee'. In display there is much calling like `pi-peee, pi-pi-pipi-peee'. At times they emit a longer scream like `kleeekkleeek'.

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