White-bellied Goshawk (Accipiter haplochrous)

White-bellied Goshawk

[order] ACCIPITRIFORMES | [family] Accipitridae | [latin] Accipiter haplochrous | [authority] Sclater, 1859 | [UK] White-bellied Goshawk | [FR] Autour a ventre blanc | [DE] Weissbauch-Habicht | [ES] Gavilan de New Caledonia | [NL] Nieuwcaledonische Havik


Genus Species subspecies Region Range
Accipiter haplochrous AU New Caledonia


Members of the genus Accipiter are small and medium-sized hawks, often called Sparrow-hawks or Goshawks. The females are almost invariably much larger than the males – in some cases weighing twice as much – a level of size dimorphism only exceptionally reached in any other genus Falconiformes. Their wings are short and rounded; the tail usually quite long. They are well adapted for flying through dense bush. Bird-catching Sparrow-hawks generally have long and slender legs, with slender digits, the middle one being especially long. Goshawks are usually larger, with shorter, thicker tarsi and digits and a shorter middle digit. Some smaller species have goshawk-like feet and vice versa, making it difficult on a world-wide basis to subdivide the genus on this or any other broad basis. Although many accipiters feed upon birds moreso than do other hawks, some species take many mammals, especially squirrels; others take lizards, frogs, snakes, insects, even snails. In these species the legs and digits are sometimes slender, but short. Accipiters are rarely crested, but some have very attractive colour patterns. Black phases are present, especially in the tropical species. One in Australia has the only pure white phase. Accipiter is the largest genus in the family, having about fifty species. It is present worldwide, but is especially rich in Papua-New Guinea, where a small island like New Britain may have three to five endemic species or distinct sub-species.

Physical charateristics

Male is unmistakable in range with dark grey, almost black upperparts, head, throat and upperpart of breast. This in strong contrast with white underparts. Chin area slightly speckled. Female has dark grey upperparts but hindneck shows a buff band. White chin and cheeks, with light grey underparts. Cere yellowish in make dark.

wingspan min.: 0 cm wingspan max.: 0 cm
size min.: 32 cm size max.: 36 cm
incubation min.: 0 days incubation max.: 0 days
fledging min.: 0 days fledging max.: 0 days
broods: 0   eggs min.: 0  
      eggs max.: 0  


Australasia : New Caledonia. Accipiter haplochrous is endemic to New Caledonia where it is fairly common throughout. It is distributed from the far north (Manjelia) to the far south at Goro.


It appears to be widespread in humid forest but occurs at lower densities in degraded forest and savanna where it coexists with Brown Goshawk A. fasciatus. It is not shy and often found close to human habitation/


Hardly any data, 3 eggs were collected form a nest. Display seen in september.

Feeding habits

Hardly known, mostly lizards, gecko’s, small birds and animals. Perches for prey and will ferociously pursue birds, even in to buildings. Take most prey from ground.

Video White-bellied Goshawk


copyright: Josep del Hoyo


This species is classified as Near Threatened because it is confined to one small island on which habitat degradation may be causing a moderate decline.
Despite legal protection, a few are killed around inhabitated areas, as it sometimes kills domestic chickens, and habitat loss and degradation are further threats. However, it is assumed that it is not undergoing any significant continuing decline
White-bellied Goshawk status Near Threatened



Distribution map

White-bellied Goshawk distribution range map

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