The Grey-headed Kite Leptodon cayanensis is a raptor found in open woodland and swamp forests. It shares the genus Leptodon with the extremely rare White-collared Kite.
Distribution / Range
It breeds from eastern Mexico and Trinidad south to Peru, Bolivia and northern Argentina.
Nesting / Breeding
The nest is of sticks lined with grass and built high in a tree. The clutch is a one or two white eggs, purplish at one end and spotted brown.
The Gray-headed Kite is 46-53 cm in length and weighs 410-605 g.
The adult has a grey head, black upperparts, white underparts, and a black tail with two or three white bars. The bill is blue and the legs grey. .
Immature birds have two colour morphs; the light phase is similar to the adult, but has a white head and neck, with a black crown and eyestripe, black bill and yellow legs. The dark phase has a blackish head, neck and upperparts, and dark-streaked buff underparts.
The flight is a deliberate flap-flap-glide
Diet / Feeding
The Gray-headed Kite feeds mainly on reptiles, but also takes frogs and large insects.
It usually sits on an open high perch from which it swoops on its prey.
Calls / Vocalization
The call is a mewling keow.