Birds Photo Click 55: Western Marsh Harrier.

Circus aeruginosus

Male, photographed in Malta.

The Western Marsh Harrier has a wide breeding range including; Europe, northwestern Africa, Central Asia and the northern parts of the Middle East.

Female, photographed in Malta.

It is often divided into two subspecies. The nominate race, which is widely distributed all over much of it’s range, and which is highly migratory and Circus aeruginosus harterti, which is resident all-year round and found in north-west Africa.

Immature, hunting Red- knobbed Coots. Photographed in Morocco.

It hunts in typical harrier behavior, gliding low over the ground or water surface in search of prey. The wings are held in a shallow V- shape, and it often does so with dangling legs. It feeds on small mammals, birds, insects, reptiles, and amphibians.

Large numbers pass over the Maltese Islands, both during Spring and autumn migration.

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