|Conservation status||Near threatend|
The Andaman serpent-eagle (Spilornis elgini) is a bird of prey found on an island within the Indian Ocean.
Andaman serpent-eagles are medium-sized, approximately 2 feet in length, with a wingspan of just over 4 feet. They are dark brown in color throughout, with heavy white speckling on the underside and wing scapulars. The primary feathers are black with thin white edging. The face and legs are yellow, and the bears a short crest. Young birds are paler in color.
In addition to snakes, Andaman serpent-eagles take birds, rodents, frogs, fish, and other small game.
Habitat and range
Andaman serpent-eagles are found on the island of South Andaman, part of an archipelago near southeast Asia in the Indian Ocean; this particular island is administered by India. The birds inhabit the rainforests of the central part of the island, whereby an ecological separation prevents competition between them and the Crested serpent-eagle (Spilornis cheela), a bird found primarily in coastal areas of the same island.
Man is the primary threat to these birds, as increased population growth has led to an increased transformation of prime habitat to agricultural needs and logging. Estimates of the overall population of Andaman serpent-eagles range as high as 7,500 birds, but it is believed to be somewhat fragmentary due to human pressure as well as the small range in which it lives.