Andaman Serpent Eagle Spilorniselgini


  • Spilornis : Greek word spilosspot; ornis
  • Elgini : named after Gov-Gen of India James Bruce 8th Earl of Elgin (1811–1863),


Distribution in India:

Endemic to AndamanIslandsin India.


Size of 51–59 cm; Wt. of 790–1000 g; wingspan of 115–135 cm. It is a medium-sized dark serpent-eagle with short crest. Overall, very dark brown with numerous small white spots that is larger and denser on underparts than on upperparts. It has a tail with multiple pale bands. Adults have yellow irides, cere, lores and feet. The juvenile is similarly dark overall, but with grey-brown irides and paler head, cere and feet.


Habitat: It is found in forest interior, typically in clearings; also on open hillsides with scattered trees at elevations from sea-level to 700 m.


Food Habits:

It eatsbirds, frogs, lizards, rats and snakes. It hunts from perch in typical serpent eagle fashion.


Breeding Habits:

They breed in March- April in Andaman Island.  They are very vocal during display flights, which include mutual soaring over territory.