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Black-shouldered Kite Sandy Hollow.jpg
Black-shouldered kite, Elanus axillaris
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Accipitriformes
Family: Accipitridae
Genus: Elanus
Savigny, 1809

E. caeruleus
E. axillaris
E. leucurus
E. scriptus

Elanus is a genus of bird of prey in the elanid kite subfamily. It consists of four species.

The first three species above were considered conspecific as subspecies of Elanus caeruleus, which has been known as the black-shouldered kite.

These are white and grey raptors of open country, with black wing markings and a short square tail. They hunt by slowly quartering the habitat for rodents and other small mammals, birds and insects, sometimes hovering like a kestrel.


  • Ferguson-Lees, Christie, Franklin, Mead and Burton Raptors of the World ISBN 0-7136-8026-1