(Elanis axillaris)

Length:  35-38 cm Common

Distribution Australia – absent from Tasmania throughout most of the winter.

Singly or in pairs, frequenting open and lightly timbered areas in country or coastal areas. It is nomadic, moving from district to district according to food supplies. It is frequently seen in the neighbourhood of farms, either flying or hovering over paddocks and crops or perched on fences, stumps or dead trees.

Their call is a chicken-like “cheep, cheep, cheep”. They feed on mice, lizards, grasshoppers and other insects. Breeding season is mainly March to September. Their nest consists of a platform made of sticks and twigs; lined with leaves; often the deserted nest of a crow or magpie. Eggs: 3 or 4; whitish blotched reddish brown.