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Brahminy Kite

Haliastur indus

Class: Aves       
Diet: Carnivore
Lifespan: Up to 30 years           
Weight: Up to 670g      
Wingspan: Up to 124cm           
Reproduction: Egg-laying         
Status: Least concern   

Brahminy kites are coastal birds of prey, found primarily along mangrove swamps and estuaries. They can be found throughout tropical Asia and across Northern Australian coastlines, from Western Australia to northern New South Wales.  While normally found along coastlines, they have also been known to fly inland along rivers.

Brahminy kites are easily distinguished by their striking colouration. Their head and chest are white, in contrast with the rest of their body and wings which are a reddish-chestnut brown. 

Brahminy kites feed primarily on carrion, fish and insects. They catch their prey by flying low over the surface of the water and snatching up fish or carrion from the surface mid-flight. They are also known to steal food from other shore birds such as seagulls and osprey by pestering them until they drop their food.

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