Male and female Little Sparrowhawks have the same colors and do not vary greatly in size. The head and bill are grey with yellow eyes. Their back is a black or grey color with a brown throat and the legs are yellow (The Kruger National Park 2019). The length ranges from 23 to 27 centimeters with about half of their length being compromised by the tail ("Little Sparrowhawk," 2019). The females have a much wider range of weight from 68 to 105 grams in comparison to males which weigh from 74 to 85 grams. Little Sparrowhawks have a wingspan of about 39 to 50 centimeters (Kemp 2010). (Kemp, 2010; "Little Sparrowhawk", 2019a; "Little Sparrowhawk", 2019b)
Little Sparrowhawks lay about one to three eggs in the breeding season from September to December. They traditionally breed once a year (iziko museums 2005). The eggs are in the incubation stage for about 31 to 32 days with a nestling period of about 25 to 27 days (Liversidge 1962). After they become somewhat independent the young will stay close to their parents for up to a year before going out on their own (iziko museums 2005). ("Accipiter minullus", 2005; Liversidge, 1962)
Little is known about the lifespan of this specific species of sparrowhawk. Individuals of the very closely related Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus) live for about four years in the wild. The oldest individual of A. nisus lived to twenty years in captivity (Robinson 2005). (Robinson, 2005)
Little Sparrowhawks do not have many predators since it is a predator itself. Little Sparrowhawks are smaller birds though, so they still have to look out for larger predators. The great eyesight of ("Accipiter minullus", 2005)keeps the bird aware of its surroundings in case of a potential threat. If the nestlings of Little Sparrowhawks are at risk their brown color keeps them camouflaged in the nest (Iziko museums 2005).
There are no definitive positive effects ofon humans. There is a possibility that they might eat some small pests.
There are no known adverse effects ofon humans.
Cassidy Payne (author), Colorado State University, Nathan Dorff (editor), Colorado State University, Tanya Dewey (editor), University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.
living in sub-Saharan Africa (south of 30 degrees north) and Madagascar.
uses sound to communicate
young are born in a relatively underdeveloped state; they are unable to feed or care for themselves or locomote independently for a period of time after birth/hatching. In birds, naked and helpless after hatching.
Referring to an animal that lives in trees; tree-climbing.
having body symmetry such that the animal can be divided in one plane into two mirror-image halves. Animals with bilateral symmetry have dorsal and ventral sides, as well as anterior and posterior ends. Synapomorphy of the Bilateria.
an animal that mainly eats meat
uses smells or other chemicals to communicate
having markings, coloration, shapes, or other features that cause an animal to be camouflaged in its natural environment; being difficult to see or otherwise detect.
animals that use metabolically generated heat to regulate body temperature independently of ambient temperature. Endothermy is a synapomorphy of the Mammalia, although it may have arisen in a (now extinct) synapsid ancestor; the fossil record does not distinguish these possibilities. Convergent in birds.
parental care is carried out by females
forest biomes are dominated by trees, otherwise forest biomes can vary widely in amount of precipitation and seasonality.
An animal that eats mainly insects or spiders.
offspring are produced in more than one group (litters, clutches, etc.) and across multiple seasons (or other periods hospitable to reproduction). Iteroparous animals must, by definition, survive over multiple seasons (or periodic condition changes).
Having one mate at a time.
having the capacity to move from one place to another.
the area in which the animal is naturally found, the region in which it is endemic.
reproduction in which eggs are released by the female; development of offspring occurs outside the mother's body.
breeding is confined to a particular season
remains in the same area
reproduction that includes combining the genetic contribution of two individuals, a male and a female
uses touch to communicate
that region of the Earth between 23.5 degrees North and 60 degrees North (between the Tropic of Cancer and the Arctic Circle) and between 23.5 degrees South and 60 degrees South (between the Tropic of Capricorn and the Antarctic Circle).
Living on the ground.
defends an area within the home range, occupied by a single animals or group of animals of the same species and held through overt defense, display, or advertisement
A terrestrial biome. Savannas are grasslands with scattered individual trees that do not form a closed canopy. Extensive savannas are found in parts of subtropical and tropical Africa and South America, and in Australia.
A grassland with scattered trees or scattered clumps of trees, a type of community intermediate between grassland and forest. See also Tropical savanna and grassland biome.
A terrestrial biome found in temperate latitudes (>23.5° N or S latitude). Vegetation is made up mostly of grasses, the height and species diversity of which depend largely on the amount of moisture available. Fire and grazing are important in the long-term maintenance of grasslands.
uses sight to communicate
Iziko Museums of South Africa. 2005. "Accipiter minullus" (On-line). Biodiversity explorer. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://www.biodiversityexplorer.info/birds/accipitridae/accipiter_minullus.htm.
2021. "Accipiter minullus" (On-line). ITIS Report. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=175332#null.
2019. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). Avibase. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://avibase.bsc-eoc.org/species.jsp?avibaseid=CE1CF6FD20908CDB.
2021. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). Bird Life Internatinal. Accessed February 14, 2021 at http://datazone.birdlife.org/species/factsheet/little-sparrowhawk-accipiter-minullus.
2021. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). DiBird. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://dibird.com/species/little-sparrowhawk/.
The Peregrine Fund. 2014. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). Global Raptor Information Network. Accessed February 14, 2021 at http://www.globalraptors.org/grin/SpeciesResults.asp?specID=8146.
The Kruger National Park. 2019. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). The Kruger National Park. Accessed February 14, 2021 at http://www.thekruger.com/knpbirds/accipiterminullus.htm.
Kemp, A. 2010. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). Wayback Machine. Accessed February 23, 2021 at https://web.archive.org/web/20161117132504/http://www.arkive.org/little-sparrowhawk/accipiter-minullus/.
Kemp, A., J. Marks. 2020. "Little Sparrowhawk" (On-line). Birds of the World. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://birdsoftheworld.org/bow/species/litspa1/cur/introduction.
Liversidge, R. 1962. "The Breeding Biology of the Little Sparrowhawk Accipiter minullus" (On-line pdf). Wiley Online Library. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1474-919X.1962.tb08666.x.
Louette, M. 2010. Evolutionary exposition from plumage pattern in African Accipiter.
Systematics Of Afrotropical Birds: 45-50. Accessed February 14, 2021 at https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/00306525.2000.9639865?needAccess=true.
Robinson, R. 2005. "Sparrowhawk Accipiter nisus" (On-line). British Trust for Ornithology. Accessed February 23, 2021 at https://app.bto.org/birdfacts/results/bob2690.htm.