The name would suggest that it is black in color, but actually it is predominantly various shades of brown, with dark brown or black feathers toward the edges of its wings, a black beak, yellow legs, and black talons. There are some white markings under its wings and on its belly, and its head and neck tend to be paler than its body.
It glides effortlessly on air thermals searching for food with its excellent eyesight, soaring 1,000 feet and more above the ground.
Its magnificent eyes set into a head that can swivel 180 degrees gives it full awareness of its environment.
The Black Kite is an aerial acrobat, maneuvering quickly and easily in any direction, soaring, wheeling, diving. It swoops down on its prey with legs lowered, grabbing it with its powerful talons.
It eats fish, rodents, insects, reptiles, and other small creatures, as well as household refuse and carrion. It likes to fly above garbage dumps and along the edges of fires to catch escaping prey. The natives of Australia believed that the bird would start fires for this purpose by transporting burning branches and dropping them on dry brush.
Black Kites usually stay near bodies of water, such as rivers, ponds, or lakes. They are gregarious birds and can form huge flocks. I have seen probably 100 or more soaring above dumps in Kathmandu, Nepal.
They issue a fascinating shrill cry that ends with an extended warbling effect that varies considerably in speed and intensity.
European Black Kites generally migrate to Africa in the winter.
The Black Kite is believed to be monogamous, perhaps even pairing for life. They have a ritualized aerial courtship during which they “perform a dangerous display known as grappling, where they lock their feet together in mid-air and begin to spiral towards the ground” (“Black Kite,” University of Michigan Museum of Zoology). The eggs are incubated by the female while the male feeds her. The chicks are cared for by both parents until the young are self-reliant.
Everything about this beautiful creature shouts “divine design,” from its DNA and its reproductive system to its brain and its incredible flying feathers. Each feather is composed of more than one million individual parts (including interlocking barbs and barbules) made up of billions of cells perfectly organized into a marvel of design.
Sharing Policy: Much of our material is available for free, such as the hundreds of articles at the Way of Life web site. Other items we sell to help fund our expensive literature and foreign church planting ministries. Way of Life's content falls into two categories: sharable and non-sharable. Things that we encourage you to share include the audio sermons, O Timothy magazine, FBIS articles, and the free eVideos and free eBooks. You are welcome to make copies of these at your own expense and share them with friends and family. You may also post parts of reports and/or entire reports to websites, blogs, etc as long as you give proper credit (citation). A link to the original report is very much appreciated as the reports are frequently updated and/or expanded. Things we do not want copied and distributed are "Store" items like the Fundamental Baptist Digital Library, print editions of our books, electronic editions of the books that we sell, the videos that we sell, etc. The items have taken years to produce at enormous expense in time and money, and we use the income from sales to help fund the ministry. We trust that your Christian honesty will preserve the integrity of this policy. "For the scripture saith, Thou shalt not muzzle the ox that treadeth out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward" (1 Timothy 5:18). Questions? firstname.lastname@example.org
Goal:Distributed by Way of Life Literature Inc., the Fundamental Baptist Information Service is an e-mail posting for Bible-believing Christians. Established in 1974, Way of Life Literature is a fundamental Baptist preaching and publishing ministry based in Bethel Baptist Church, London, Ontario, of which Wilbert Unger is the founding Pastor. Brother Cloud lives in South Asia where he has been a church planting missionary since 1979. Our primary goal with the FBIS is to provide material to assist preachers in the edification and protection of the churches.
Offering: We take up a quarterly offering to fund this ministry, and those who use the materials are expected to participate (Galatians 6:6) if they can. We do not solicit funds from those who do not agree with our preaching and who are not helped by these publications. We seek offerings only from those who are helped. OFFERINGS can be mailed or made online with with Visa, Mastercard, Discover, or Paypal. For information see: www.wayoflife.org/about/makeanoffering.html.
Way of Life Literature
Publisher of Bible Study Materials