Biometric differences between age and sex classes of the levant sparrohawk Accipiter brevipes on migration at Eilat, Israel

R. Yosef, L. Fornasari

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The Levant sparrowhawk (Accipiter brevipes) is a typical raptor with reversed sexual size dimorphism wherein the female is larger than the male. Here, we present the factors contributing to biometric differences between the age and sex classes. Starting from 1984. 1164 Levant sparrowhawks were captured and banded in the area immediately to the north of Elat, Israel. Comparing mean values. feather-dependent characters were 6.6-7.3% larger in adult females than in adult males, and 6.2-6.8% larger in second year females than in second year males. Differences were greater for culmen and hallux length and for body mass. We found wing cord and body mass to be the parameters most efficient in separating sex or age classes. Upon performing discriminant analyses on our data set, we found that hallux length varied independently between males and females, irrespective of the age of the bird. Our data establish that the Levant sparrowhawk is the least dimorphic of the European Accipiter species but has a sex-specific hallux size.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)207-214
Number of pages8
JournalIsrael Journal of Zoology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2000


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology

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