A Migratory Chinese Sparrowhawk (Accipiter soloensis) in our Backyard
The Chinese Sparrowhawk (Accipiter soloensis) is a migratory winter visitor to the Philippines and other parts of Southeast Asia. While it breeds in China, the Korean peninsula, and Siberia this accipiter can be found around the Philippine archipelago from August to May. This one has been hanging around our Siargao yard hunting frogs all week!
One diagnostic feature of this raptor is its bright yellow cere. The cere is a waxy, fleshy covering at the base of the upper beak.
The preferred habitat of this bird is wooded areas, forest, and forest edges. It can also be found around coconut plantations.
Frogs are the main prey of the Chinese Sparrow hawk. It also will fly out from its perch to catch grasshoppers, dragonflies and beetles. This raptor has also been observed feeding on lizards.
With the onset of the rainy season and darker days, the frogs which are usually only active at night have been seen lately in the daytime. We’ve written before about the Golden Tree Frog (Polypedates lecomystax). This one was jumping (up to 1.5 meters) around the yard this morning. I imagine the local abundance of frogs is one reason we’ve seen the Chinese Sparrowhawk around our property all week!