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Philippine Crested Serpent Eagle

Spilornis holospilus


This eagle is endemic to the Philippines and now listed as endangered. This specimen is a male and stands 21 inches. It is distinguished from other serpent eagle species through the prominent spots on the wings and the underpants. It feeds on reptiles, amphibians, small mammals and even birds. One time I saw it caught a toxic cane toad, squeezed it with its talons and splits open the abdomen with its beak and eats only the internal organs. Well he knows that the other parts are toxic - beauty of instinct. It is a solitary and very territorial bird, often seen with company only during the mating season.


It inhabits primary and secondary forests. Often seen soaring above forests clearings, cultivated and populated land making them vulnerable to hunters.


This one is actually rescued by my uncle ( a volunteer wildlife rescue ranger ) in exchange of 1000 pieces milkfish fingerlings that cost about 20US$. He has a gunshot wound at the right shoulder and could not fly.We took care of him for more than a year and then released him after he was rehabilitated. At first he kept coming back back to our house after a while, during the mating season he wasn't able to come back. I just hope his fine now. I must admit, in our place, it is far more safer to keep wild animals in captivity than setting them free in the wild where they are often hunted for food or sadly without any reason but by mere pleasure of killing.

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marylou.wildlife 10 years ago

Wow, that's a great story and an amazing animal. You are an incredible person... I see BIG things for your future and the future of our planet! You never cease to amaze me :)

MayraSpringmann 10 years ago


Gerardo Aizpuru
Gerardo Aizpuru 10 years ago

Wonderful spotting great history:)

the_tajminator 10 years ago

yes I am fine with you calling me taj many people do...too bad there's so few of them it's beautiful

Jolly Ibañez
Jolly Ibañez 10 years ago

Hi! Please consider adding this to the Philippine Endemic Species Mission at:

Ismael Chaves
Ismael Chaves 10 years ago


shekainah d. alaban
shekainah d. alaban 10 years ago

Thanks taj can I call you taj? I find it more intimate. Actually based on my observation, there no more than 5 of these eagles in our province to the present.

the_tajminator 10 years ago

love the colors

Roxas City, Capiz, Philippines

Spotted on Oct 8, 2009
Submitted on Jul 1, 2012

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