Zmeyechead photo and description of a bird from the Red Book, which eats, where it lives, facts

Zmeyechead is looking for snakes, large and small. The bird tracks the victim from above, dives sharply, grabs (usually) a snake sharp like a razor with claws.

Individual features of the species

  • First, the snake’s head swallows, the tail sticks out from his mouth;
  • performs a complex dance in the sky during the wedding season, one of the elements is tossing snakes;
  • freezes for a long time over prey before falling down and grabs the victim.
  • Where the snakes are found

    They live in southwest and southeastern Europe, including France, Italy and Spain, in north-west of Africa, east of Iran, Iraq, India, in Western China and on the islands of Indonesia.

    Natural habitat

    Snieriads prefer open places with scattered trees, meadows, forests and rocky slopes, where birds nest and spend the night. In heat climate is located on dry plains, hills and mountains. In the northern latitudes, the bird lives on wastelands, moist meadows and the outskirts of water-bolot lands adjacent to the forests.

    Hunting and food addictions

    Snake attacks prey from a distance of up to 1,500 m due to exceptional vision.

    Zmeyechead is an experienced snake hunter, 70-80% of the diet consists of reptiles. The bird also eats:

  • reptiles;
  • frogs;
  • wounded birds;
  • rodents;
  • small mammals.
  • Snieriad hunts at heights, uses branches to track down the booty, and sometimes haunts a victim on Earth or on small water.

    Hunting the snakes, the bird grabs the sacrifice, breaks the head or tears off with claws/beak, then swallows. Snake has no immunity to the bites of poisonous snakes, but he swallows them, not being bitten, the poison is digested in the intestines. The bird is protected by thick feathers on the paws. When it eats a large snake, it takes off, and the tail peeps out of the beak. Zmeyechead feeds a partner or chick, throwing his head back, another bird pulls out prey from the throat. Young snakes instinctively know how to swallow food.

    Bird propagation in nature

    In the wedding season, the snakes fly up to a height, performs breathtaking tricks. The male begins a wedding dance with a steep rise, then it falls repeatedly and rises again. The male carries a snake or twig in its beak, which he throws and catches, then passes the chosen one. After that, the birds take off together and publish loud, similar to the call of gulls screams.

    Couples are created for life. Every year, the female builds a new nest of rods and sticks on trees high above the ground, not visible from below. Small nest compared to the size of birds, deep, covered with green herbs. The female lays a smooth white oval egg with blue stains.

    Mom forces eggs on her own for 45-47 days. Newborn chicks fluffy white with gray eyes, which then become bright orange or yellow. Young snakes have large heads. First, feathers grow on the back and head, protect the body from the scorching sun. Both parents feed the chick, which is driven after 70-75 days. Young animals fly to nearby branches after 60 days, after the inspiration leaves the territory of the parents. Chicks are fed with torn pieces of snakes or lizards.

    If the egg does not hatch, the female hatches up to 90 days before giving up.

    Behavior and seasonal migration

    Snieriads protect living space from other birds of their own species. In a threatening demo flight, a bird flies with a fully elongated head and issues warning signals that scare away competitors from crossing the boundaries of the feed territory.

    After the reproduction season, they migrate, traveling one by one in pairs or small groups. European snakes winter in the northern latitudes of Africa; Eastern populations on the Indian subcontinent and in Southeast Asia.

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