Fun Lizard Buzzard Facts For Kids

Moumita Dutta
Feb 29, 2024 By Moumita Dutta
Originally Published on Nov 15, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Kidadl Team
Lizard Buzzard facts include information about its diet.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 7.3 Min

Commonly known as lizard hawks, the lizard buzzard (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) is a species of bird belonging to the animal kingdom of phylum Chordata, order Accipitriformes, family Accipitridae, and genus Kaupifalco. Despite belonging from the same family as the Buteo buzzards, it has a close relationship with the Accipiter hawks. The conservation status of this bird is listed as Least Concern by the IUCN Red List for showing an abundant population within its geographical range. Its distribution ranges across Sub-Saharan and Southern African states. Dense savanna woodland and forests are mainly inhabited by it. Having a carnivorous diet, it eats invertebrates, mammals, rodents, birds, and reptiles. They are solitary birds that perch on tree-tops for hours in search of prey. The breeding season of this bird occurs between September to November when the females lay a clutch size of one to three eggs. They build stick nests wherein they lay their eggs. A striking physical description and the sweet calls make them a favorite among the bird keepers all across the world.

Keep reading to discover interesting facts about the lizard buzzard! If you like this article, don't forget to check out griffon vulture and Hawaiian hawk to discover and learn captivating facts about them.

Lizard Buzzard Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a lizard buzzard?

The lizard buzzard (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) is a species of bird belonging to the animal kingdom of phylum Chordata, order Accipitriformes, family Accipitridae, and genus Kaupifalco. The scientific name assigned to this bird species is Kaupifalco monogrammicus.

What class of animal does a lizard buzzard belong to?

Commonly known as lizard hawks, the lizard buzzard (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) is a member of the class Aves. Belonging to the genus Kaupifalco, they are birds of prey or raptors that have a closer relationship with Accipiter hawks than the Buteo buzzards that belong to the same family.

How many lizard buzzards are there in the world?

Researchers are yet to record the exact number of mature individuals that are found in the world. However, they are pretty common within their geographical range with a stable population trend. Moreover, they have no major potential threats that could make them prone to being vulnerable.

Where does a lizard buzzard live?

The common raptor, lizard buzzard, is a native to the lands of Sub-Saharan Africa. In particular, their population distribution ranges across several African states namely West Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, North-east Namibia, Botswana, and South Africa. They show no signs of community fragmentation and hence, are not found elsewhere in the world.

What is a lizard buzzard's habitat?

The lizard buzzard habitat distribution incorporates open moist dense savanna woodlands and forests, mainly miombo or riparian woodland and forest edges in the warmer climates. In winter, this raptor is common among the thornbush in savanna woodlands.

Who do lizard buzzards live with?

Apart from the breeding season when these raptors are found flying in flocks, they are generally solitary in nature. They are non-migrants that remain within their geographical range and are often found perching on tree-tops or wires in order to search for prey.

How long does a lizard buzzard live?

Unlike the common buzzards whose lifespan ranges from 12-20 years, the lizard buzzard, in general, possesses longevity of nine years only.

How do they reproduce?

Unlike the common buzzards that breed in March, the breeding season of lizard buzzards occurs between the months of September to November. These birds are exceptionally shy and monogamous in their breeding habits. During this time, males may show aggression towards larger birds. The two sexes form permanent bonds and build their nest together post-copulation. The nest, generally placed in the fork of a tree, is made up of sticks and is small in size. These birds prefer the sub-canopy or fork of trees or places around the tree trunk to build their stick nest. Dry grass, green leaves, and lichen are used to line the nest intricately. Post-copulation, the lizard buzzard female counterparts lay a clutch size of one to three, white-colored eggs. A lizard buzzard egg hatches after an incubation period that continues for about 32-34 days. The next 40 days are spent feeding the newborn chicks. On completing 90 days inside the nest, the chicks gain full independence to soar into the air.

What is their conservation status?

Considering a plentiful community within its geographical range, the lizard buzzard (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) has been qualified as Least Concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List. They have a stable population trend with no signs of potential threats. Hence, they are far from reaching the threshold of vulnerability.

Lizard Buzzard Fun Facts

What do lizard buzzards look like?

The lizard buzzard (Kaupifalco monogrammicus) is a small raptor and the physical description of both the sexes is identical. An adult lizard buzzard has gray-colored underparts. The head and breast are also gray in color. It has a white throat with a vertical black line on it which is a distinctive feature found only in this bird species among the others that belong to the same family. Dark gray streaks are found on the white-colored belly with red feet. It has a gray-colored vent and a hooked bill which is black and red in color. The small, round eyes are reddish-brown in color with an orange ring around them. The tail and flight feathers have a paler shade. Juveniles are somewhat identical to the adults except for the upper and wing feathers that exhibit brown color (gray in adults) along with dark brown eyes.

Lizard buzzard images can be useful for you to identify them in the wild.

How cute are they?

The physical description comprising a soothing color combination of white and gray shades along with the small size makes the lizard buzzards look exceptionally cute. Their look is further enhanced by the white throat that has a distinct vertical black line on it.

How do they communicate?

Lizard buzzards are found using distinct vocalizations while establishing territories or displaying, like other buzzards. They produce a clear whistle that sounds like 'Klu-klu-klu' or a loud 'pee-oh'. For being passive hunters, they do not engage in constant twittering.

How big is a lizard buzzard?

The lizard buzzard can grow up to an average length of 13.77-14.96 in (35-38 cm) with a wingspan of length 31.1 in (79 cm). They are comparatively smaller than the bateleur eagle measuring 22-28 in (55-70 cm).

How fast can a lizard buzzard fly?

The accurate flight speed of a lizard buzzard is unknown. However, it can be assumed that they can achieve a speed of 28 mph (45.2 kph), just like the European honey buzzard.

How much does a lizard buzzard weigh?

The average weight of the male and female counterparts of this bird species is estimated at 7.7-9.7 oz (220-275 g) and 8.7-14.4 oz (248-410 g). Evidently, females are larger and heavier than males.

What are the male and female names of the species?

No names have been assigned to the lizard buzzard male or female counterparts.

What would you call a baby lizard buzzard?

Like all bird species, a lizard buzzard baby is known as a chick.

What do they eat?

Being carnivores by nature, the lizard buzzard diet includes invertebrates, mammals, rodents, and reptiles, similar to other buzzards. Some of their preferred reptiles are snakes, lizards, and frogs. This bird may have been named 'lizard' buzzard due to the presence of lizards in its diet. It also eats other small birds and insects. These birds are passive hunters that are seen perching on tree-tops or wires to search for prey. They are not capable of preying in flight. It hunts prey off the grass in dense forests with the help of short, pointed wings. Such a wing helps it to achieve swift flight.

Are they dangerous?

This bird species is not known to be dangerous. It prefers living in solitude and spends most of its time searching for prey from tree-tops.

Would they make a good pet?

An instance of a lizard buzzard as a pet has not been recorded yet. These birds prefer to live in solitude and require a specialized diet for optimum growth. Moreover, they may not comply with staying inside cages which may affect their well-being. However, bird keepers may try their luck at petting one of these.

Did you know...

Despite being known to build their own nests, the lizard buzzards have been observed to occupy existing nests of birds belonging to their species as well as the nests built by shikras. This is because the Shikras are of the same size as them and possess similar habitat preferences.

Do lizard buzzards hunt live prey?

Lizard buzzard hunts live prey, like other buzzards with the help of its hooked bill and short, pointed wings. They are seen perching on tree-tops or wires for this purpose. As soon as it locates one, it comes flying, sweeps across the ground, and pricks the prey with its bill like a fork.

Why does a lizard buzzard call?

Unlike common buzzards that breed in March, the lizard buzzards are found breeding between September to November. At this time, they produce a song-like call 'klu-klu-klu'. They also produce a distinct loud call 'pee-oh' while establishing territory.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these saker falcon facts and white hawk facts for kids.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable bird coloring pages.

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Written by Moumita Dutta

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

Moumita Dutta picture

Moumita DuttaBachelor of Arts specializing in Journalism and Mass Communication, Postgraduate Diploma in Sports Management

A content writer and editor with a passion for sports, Moumita has honed her skills in producing compelling match reports and stories about sporting heroes. She holds a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication from the Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management, Calcutta University, alongside a postgraduate diploma in Sports Management.

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