Scientific Name: Milvus migrans
Malay Name: Helang-Kembara Hitam
Chinese Name: 黑鸢
Range: Found from Europe, Africa, Middle East, Indian subcontinent, Central Asia, Siberia, China, Japan, Korea, Indochina and discontinously to Sulawesi, Lesser Sundas, Papua New Guinea and northern Australia with the northern temperate populations wintering south to Africa, Indian subcontinent and Southeast Asia
Taxonomy: Polytypic. Subspecies are: migrans, lineatus, govinda, formosanus, affinis.
Local Subspecies: lineatus
Size: 61-66 cm
Identification: Adult resembles juvenile Brahminy Kite but has darker overall plumage, distinctive forked tail that appears almost square-cut when broadly fanned in flight and conspicuous whitish patch on the base of primaries. Juvenile resembles adult but has prominent whitish streaks on breast and belly.
Similar looking species: Booted Eagle, Brahminy Kite
Habitat: Open country, reclaimed land, coastal habitat and forest.
Local Status: Rare migrant
Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2021)
Location: Recent sightings were at Changi, Tuas South, Punggol Barat, Central Catchment Forest, Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve, Bulim Avenue and Choa Chu Kang Christian Cemetery.
- RAP201: How to Identify Uncommon Raptors (ID Articles)
- RAP301: What is that raptor? (ID Articles)
Conservation Status: IUCN Red List Page
Sound Recordings: xeno-canto Link
Wikipedia Entry: Wikipedia Link
eBird Species page: eBird (Black Kite)
BirdLife International. (2021). Milvus migrans. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2021. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2021-3.RLTS.T181568721A206588554.en. Accessed on 1 January 2023
Jeyarajasingam, A., & Pearson, A. (2012). A Field Guide to the Birds of Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore. Oxford University Press.
Robson, C. (2014). Field guide to the birds of South-East Asia (Second Edition). Bloomsbury Publishing, London.
Singapore Birds Project. (n.d.). Black Kite. Retrieved on May 28, 2023 from https://singaporebirds.com/species/black-kite.