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Red-necked Falcon
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Red-necked Falcon

Red-necked Falcon
Scientific classification
Binomial name
Falco chiquera
Daudin, 1800

The Red-necked Falcon (Falco chiquera) is a bird of prey in the falcon family.

This bird is a widespread resident in India and sub-Saharan Africa. It is found in semi-desert, savannah and other dry open country with some trees, but also riverine forest. This falcon reuses the old tree nests of corvids, or lays its 3-5 eggs in the debris in the crown of a Rhun Palm.

It often perches hidden in the crown of a palm, and chases birds, bats and large insects with a fast dashing flight. It is most active at dawn and dusk, hunting below the tree canopy.

Red-necked Falcons are 30-36cm in length with a wingspan of 85cm. This is a medium-sized, long-winged species with a bright rufous crown and nape.

The adult of the African race has a white face apart from black moustachial stripes. The upperparts are pale grey, with black primary wing feathers and tail tip. The underparts are white with dark barring on the underwings, lower breast, belly and undertail. There is a buff foreneck band. The legs and eyering are yellow.

Sexes are similar, but young birds are buff below with less extensive barring and duller upperpart plumage.

The Indian form has rufous moustachial stripes, lacks the buff breast band, and is less extensively barred than the African subspecies.

The voice of this species is a shrill kek-kek-kek.