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The Owen Springs Reserve offer some great outdoor experiences and activities, including bird watching. A number of raptors have been sighted in the area, including the Black Kite (Milvus migrans).

A medium size bird of prey, the Black Kite are found throughout mainland Australia, including northern Tasmania and some of the Bass Strait islands. Seen from a distance they can often appear almost black, with their angled wings and distinctive forked tail, quite easy to identified.

When at rest, the shoulder plumage is light brown, with scattered light brown and rufous markings, on the head, neck and underparts. The Black Kite tail is forked, barred with darker brown, which gives the Black Kite it other common name of Fork-tailed Kite.

The Black Kite bill is black with a yellow cere (this is the area of skin around the nostrils). Both sexes are similar in appearance. The young birds are usually lighter in colour and have a shallower forked tail.


  • Scientific classification
  • Kingdom: Animalia
  • Phylum: Chordata
  • Class: Aves
  • Order: Accipitriformes
  • Family: Accipitridae
  • Genus: Milvus
  • Species: M. migrans
  • Binomial name: Milvus migrans