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Temporal range: Eocene [1]- Recent
46 mya – present
Golden Eagle in flight - 5.jpg
Golden eagle about to land
Scientific classification

Vieillot, 1816

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.

References[change | change source]

  1. Mayr, Gerald (2009). Paleogene fossil birds. Springer. p. 159. ISBN 3540896287. ISBN 9783540896289. Retrieved 9 December 2013.