Australasian Eagles and Eagle-like Birds

December 2017
More details
  • Publisher
    CSIRO Publishing
  • Published
    20th December 2017
  • ISBN 9781486306923
  • Language English
  • Pages 192 pp.
  • Size 6.625" x 9.625"
  • Images color photos

Eagles are awe-inspiring birds that have influenced much human endeavor. Australia is home to three eagle species, and in Melanesia there are four additional endemic species. A further three large Australian hawks are eagle-like. Eagles, being at the top of the food chain, are sensitive ecological barometers of human impact on the Earth’s ecosystem services, and all of the six Australian species covered in this book are threatened in at least some states (one also nationally). Three of the four Melanesian tropical forest endemics are threatened or near-threatened.

In Australasian Eagles and Eagle-like Birds, Dr Stephen Debus provides a 25-year update of knowledge on these 10 species as a supplement to the Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds (HANZAB) and recent global treatises, based partly on his own field studies. Included are the first nest or prey records for some Melanesian species. This book places the Australasian species in their regional and global context, reviews their population status and threats, provides new information on their ecology, and suggests what needs to be done in order to ensure the future of these magnificent birds.

Australasian Eagles and Eagle-like Birds is an invaluable resource for raptor biologists, birdwatchers, wildlife rescuers and carers, raptor rehabilitators and zookeepers.


Part I – Sea-eagles
White-bellied Sea-Eagle Haliaeetus leucogaster
Sanford’s Sea-Eagle Haliaeetus sanfordi

Part II – Harpy eagles
New Guinea Harpy Eagle Harpyopsis novaeguineae

Part III – Booted eagles
Wedge-tailed Eagle Aquila audax
Gurney’s Eagle Aquila gurneyi
Little Eagle Hieraaetus morphnoides
Pygmy Eagle Hieraaetus weiskei

Part IV – Australian eagle-like hawks
Black-breasted Buzzard Hamirostra melanosternon
Square-tailed Kite Lophoictinia isura
Red Goshawk Erythrotriochis radiatus

Other sources of information
Appendix: Scientific names of other Australian raptors

Stephen Debus

Dr. Stephen Debus has studied Australia’s raptors, including falcons, for over 40 years. He is an honorary research associate in zoology at the University of New England. He is the author of Australasian Eagles and Eagle-like Birds, Australian Birds of Prey in Flight, Birds of Prey of Australia, and was awarded BirdLife Australia’s D.L. Serventy Medal for ornithological publication.