Original Research

Home range and activity of African goshawks Accipiter tachiro in relation to their predation on bats

I.L. Rautenbach, M.B. Fenton, A.C. Kemp, S.J. van Jaarsveld
Koedoe | Vol 33, No 2 | a437 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/koedoe.v33i2.437 | © 1990 I.L. Rautenbach, M.B. Fenton, A.C. Kemp, S.J. van Jaarsveld | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 23 September 1990 | Published: 23 September 1990

About the author(s)

I.L. Rautenbach, Transvaal Museum, South Africa
M.B. Fenton, York University, United States
A.C. Kemp, Transvaal Museum, South Africa
S.J. van Jaarsveld, African Raptor Information Centre, South Africa

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Winter radio-tracking of three African goshawks Accipiter tachiro showed that they each occupied well-wooded home ranges of at least 28 hectares. They perched and roosted mainly within densely foliaged trees and an adult female changed perches on average 4,7 times per hour. No crepuscular predation of bats was recorded, in contrast to regular summer predation on colonies of little free-tailed bats, Tadarida pumila, but winter emergence rates of these bats at dusk had dropped to < 5 of the previous summer. We predict that many accipiters will be regular predators of bats and that skewed sex ratios and high fecundity may be two means by which bats counter this predation.


Accipiter tachiro, home range, activity, bats, predation.


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