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Accipitridae facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Temporal range: Eocene - Recent
46 mya – present
Golden eagle about to land
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Accipitriformes
Family: Accipitridae
Vieillot, 1816
  • Accipitrinae
  • Aegypiinae
  • Buteoninae
  • Circaetinae
  • Circinae
  • Elaninae
  • Milvinae
  • Perninae

The Accipitridae are one of the two major families in the order Accipitriformes (the diurnal birds of prey).

They are a family of small to large birds with strongly hooked bills (beaks). They vary accordig to their diet. They feed on prey items from insects to medium-sized mammals. Some feed on carrion and a few feed on fruit. The Accipitridae have a cosmopolitan distribution, being found on all the world's continents (except Antarctica) and a number of oceanic island groups. Some species are migratory.

Many well-known birds, such as hawks, eagles, kites, harriers and Old World vultures are included in this group. The osprey is usually placed in a separate family (Pandionidae), as is the secretary bird. The New World vultures are now usually a separate family or order.

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