Appearance There are 4 species of Goshawk found in Kenya. They share their family name (Accipitridae) with Buzzards, Eagles, Hawks, Harriers, Kites, Sparrowhawks, Vultures, the Bateleur, Lammergeier and Shikra. Goshawks are slender, with short, rounded wings and long tails. They have sharp, predator bills and bare lower legs. The Gabar Goshawk is an exception, having longer wings.
Habits Goshawks fly rapidly amongst branches of trees, chasing their prey. They are solitary birds, they perch on trees, waiting to swoop on their prey, with the exception of the African Goshawk, that soars over the forest canopy. Platform nests are built by the females, in trees, away from the main trunk. Nests are made from sticks and twigs, then lined with fresh leaves. Some Goshawks take over nests previously made by Hadada Ibis or Little Sparrowhawks, re-lining them. The Gabar Goshawk lines its nest with spiders webs, with spiders still attached, presumably to eat insects that would otherwise be detrimental to the chicks.
Diet Some Goshawks eat insects, reptiles and small mammals and all of them eat other birds.
Resident Goshawks are residents of forests, bushed and dense woodlands. Never seen above 3,000 metres. The Gabar Goshawk is seen all over Kenya, the Eastern Chanting Goshawk only in central and east, the African Goshawk in central and south and the Dark Chanting Goshawk in north-west and Mara GR.
Extra Goshawk Facts Female Goshawks are much larger than the males.
Photographs Photographed at Kenya's Masai Mara, Meru NP and Olare Orok Conservancy.