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Yellow-billed Kite
File:Milvus aegyptius -Limpopo, South Africa-8.png
In Limpopo, South Africa
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Clade: Inopinaves
Clade: Afroaves
Superorder: Accipitrimorphae
Order: Accipitriformes
Family: Accipitridae
Subfamily: Buteoninae
Tribe: Milvini
Genus: Milvus
Species: M. aegyptius
Binomial name
Milvus aegyptius
Gmelin, 1788
  • M. a. aegyptius
  • M. a. parasitus

The Yellow-billed Kite (Milvus aegyptius) is the Afrotropic counterpart of the Black Kite (Milvus migrans), of which it is most often considered a subspecies. However, recent DNA studies suggest that the Yellow-billed Kite differs significantly from Black Kites in the Eurasian clade, and should be considered as a separate, allopatric species.[1]

There are two subspecies: M. a. parasitus, found throughout most of sub-Saharan Africa (including Madagascar), except for the Congo Basin (with intra-African migrations) and M. a. aegyptius of Egypt, south-west Arabia and the Horn of Africa (which disperses south during the non-breeding season).

Other names[]


Its large, bright yellow bill can help you tell it apart from other hawks in the area. It is a medium-sized hawk, large compared to its other kite relatives. It has yellow feet as well and rufous-colored legs that are a different color from the rest of the body.

Similar species[]



The Yellow-billed Kite eats mostly insects and small vertebrates. They will also scavenge.




It can be found in sub-saharan Africa, with some birds reaching up to Egypt and the Horn of Africa. They have been found in many African habitats, but they are much more scarce in the desert.


  1. ^ Jeff A. Johnson, Richard T. Watson and David P. Mindell (2005) Prioritizing species conservation: does the Cape Verde kite exist? Proc. R. Soc. B 272: 1365–1371 [1]

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