Kite (bird)

Kite is a common name for certain birds of prey in the family Accipitridae, particularly in subfamilies Milvinae, Elaninae, and Perninae.[1]

Some authors use the terms "hovering kite" and "soaring kite" to distinguish between Elanus and the milvine kites, respectively. The groups may also be differentiated by size, referring to milvine kites as "large kites", and elanine kites as "small kites".

Black kite
Black kite
(Milvus migrans)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Accipitriformes
Family: Accipitridae


A few of the traditional Perninae are also called kites.

Taxonomy and systematics

19th century

In 1824, Vigors[2] proposed five divisions or stirpes of the family Falconidae: Aquilina (eagles), Accipitrina (hawks), Falconina (falcons), Buteonina (buzzards) and Milvina (kites, containing two genera Elanus and Milvus). He characterized the kites as having weaker bill and feebler talons than the buzzards, tail more or less forked, and wings longer than the tail.[2](p314)

In Elanus, he grouped the black-winged kite (now several Elanus spp.), scissor-tailed kite (now Chelictinia), and swallow-tailed kite (now Elanoides). These species all have pointed wings with the second primary the longest. The pattern of scales on the legs (acrotarsi) is reticulated, and the toes are separated. But Vigors noted that only the black-winged kite had rounded undersides on the nails of its talons, a trait found in the osprey but not in any other raptors, and thus suggested a separation of Elanus into two sections.[2](p333) A year later, he established a separate genus Nauclerus for the scissor- and swallow-tailed kites.[3]

Milvus contained the familiar red and black kites. The fourth primary feather is the longest, leg scales are scutellated, and the exterior toe is united to the middle toe by a membrane.[2](p334)

Vigors placed Ictinia – "the Milan Cresserelle of M. Vieillot" and "the Mississippi Kite of Mr. Wilson" – into Buteonina. Though noting that "the wings are of considerable length, extending far beyond the tail, a character which has induced M. Vieillot and others to place this bird near the Kites", he wrote that the strong affinity in characteristics and manners warranted it to be placed closer to the falcons.[2](p331)

20th century

Swann's 1922 synopsis grouped all the kites together with the "cuckoo-falcons" and honey buzzards into a large Milvinæ subfamily.[4] His order was: Elanoides, Chelictinia, Milvus, Lophoictinia, Rostrhamus, Helicolestes, Chondrohierax, Odontriorchis, Gypoictinia (=Hamirostra), Elanus, Gampsonyx, Ictinia, Harpagus, Baza, Aviceda, Henicopernis, Machærhamphus, Pernis.

In contrast, Peters[5] grouped the large kites into subfamily Milvinae and most small kites into Elaninae, with a few small kites joining the honey-buzzards and bazas in Perninae. His arrangement of kite genera was as follows:

  • Elaninae: Elanus, Chelictinia, Machaerhamphus.
  • Perninae: Elanoïdes, (Aviceda, Henicopernis, Pernis, Odontotriorchis), Chondrohierax.
  • Milvinae: Harpagus, Ictinia, Rostrhamus, Helicolestes, Milvus, Lophoictinia, Hamirostra, Haliastur.
  • Polyhieracinae: Gampsonyx

The pearl kite Gampsonyx had variously been placed with the accipiters, forest-falcons, or elanine kites. It was not until the 1960s that a similar molt schedule established its affinity to Elanus.

21st century

By 2015, genetic research showed that many of the kite genera are related to the honey-buzzards, and that the tiny bat hawk (Machaerhamphus or Macheirhamphus) is actually related to the huge harpy eagles. Several of the large kites are related more closely to the Buteo hawks (buzzards) than to the group of "true" kites and sea-eagles.

Boyd[6] places the "true" milvine kites (Milvus and Haliastur) with the sea-eagles in tribe Milvini within Buteoninae. This results in the following arrangement (genera in parentheses are not generally called kites):

  • Elaninae: Gampsonyx, Chelictinia, Elanus.
  • Perninae: Chondrohierax, Leptodon, Elanoides, (Pernis), Hamirostra, Lophoictinia, (Henicopernis).
  • Buteoninae
    • Harpagini: Harpagus.
    • Milvini: Haliastur, Milvus, (Haliaeetus, Icthyophaga).
    • Buteonini: many genera, including the kites Ictinia, Rostrhamus, and Helicolestes.
      Ictinia is near-basal, after the Old-World genus Butastur. Rostrhamus and Helicolestes form a clade with the black-collared hawk (Busarellus) and the crane hawk (Geranospiza).

As early as 1882, Anton Reichenow had also placed Section Milvinæ alongside Section Buteoninæ in Subfamily Buteoninæ.[7](p18)

In mythology

Isis is said in ancient Egyptian mythology to have taken the form of a kite in various situations in order to resurrect the dead.[8]

It also figures in several fables by Aesop which underline its character as a predator: The Sick Kite, The Kite and the Doves and a variant of The Crow and the Snake.[9][10]


  1. ^ "kite". Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica Inc., 2014. Web. 24 Nov. 2014 <>.
  2. ^ a b c d e Vigors, Nicholas Aylward (June 1824). "On the groups of the Falconidæ". Sketches in Ornithology. The Zoological Journal. 1 (2): 308–346. Retrieved 2016-03-13.
  3. ^ Vigors, Nicholas Aylward (October 1825). "On a new genus of Falconidæ". Sketches in Ornithology. The Zoological Journal. 2 (7): 385–386.
  4. ^ Swann, H. Kirke (1922). "Sub-Fam. VI Milvinæ". A synopsis of the Accipitres (diurnal birds of prey) comprising species and subspecies described up to 1920, with their characters and distribution (2 ed.). London. pp. 150–178.
  5. ^ Peters, 1931. Check-list of Birds of the World, volume 1, pages 192 to 205.
  6. ^ Taxonomy in Flux checklist: Accipitriformes "One thing that genetic results have made clear is that the kites are not a natural group. ... Kites also occur in three clades in Perninae and four clades in Buteoninae." "Three groups of kites are part of Perninae. The Neotropical Chondrohierax and Leptodon kites, the Swallow-tailed Kite (Elanoides, sister to the Pernis honey-buzzards), and the Square-tailed Kite (Lophoictinia, sister to the Henicopernis honey-buzzards). Note that the honey-buzzards are not a natural group either."
  7. ^ Sharpe, Richard Bowdler (1891). A review of recent attempts to classify birds; an address delivered before the Second international ornithological congress on the 18th of May, 1891, by R. Bowdler Sharpe. Budapest: Office of the Second International Ornithological Congress. In 1882 appeared Dr. Reichenow's 'Die Vogel der Zoologischen Gärten', with a scheme of arrangement of birds"
  8. ^ "Isis the Goddess." Egyptian Gods. Siteseen Ltd., June 2014. Web. 24 Nov. 2014. <>.
  9. ^ "Walet". Retrieved 29 June 2015.
  10. ^ Aesopica 143

External links

Aughrim Rugby

Aughrim Rugby was officially founded on 3 February 2011 in Aughrim, County Wicklow, Ireland. Otherwise known as Aughrim RFC or The Red Kites.

During the previous year of 2010 research had been carried out on primary and secondary schools throughout South County Wicklow to see if it could recruit and put together a sustainable rugby club. As of March 2011 Aughrim Rugbys Schools Partner Program consists of 7 primary schools.

The Aughrim Rugby logo is based on the red kite bird of prey which was re-introduced to the Wicklow hills starting in 2007. The club colours for the jersey are royal blue and white linings; the shorts are royal blue; and socks are royal blue and white linings.

Aughrim Rugby will initially cater for mini rugby up to the age of under 12's (season: 2011/2012). Youths rugby will follow during season 2012/2013.

As a new club Aughrim Rugby's medium term plan throughout year one was to appoint volunteers via their volunteer management program. Key positions Child Welfare Officer(s), Coach Development Officer(s), Volunteer Coordinator(s), Schools Liaison Officer(s), Player Recruitment Officer(s) and Club Development Officer(s)have been filled based on previous skills in business and sporting acumen.

On 2 April 2011 Aughrim Rugby held its launch day with over 96 children registering to play for Aughrim Rugby.On 12 April Aughrim Rugby was fully accredited to the IRFU and the Leinster Branch of the IRFU. Officially Aughrim Rugby is Ireland's newest rugby club.

Aughrim Rugby was one of several lucky clubs to be nominated for funding via Ulster Bank Rugbyforce in 2011.

On 26 December 2011 Aughrim Rugby played at half time during the RaboDirectPro12 match between Leinster and Ulster at the RDS Arena in front of a sell out crowd of 20,000.

Shane Byrne was born and raised in Aughrim. Shane played for Leinster, Saracens, British & Irish Lions and won over 40 caps for Ireland. He is of course a big supporter of Aughrim Rugby.


The bamboo-copter, also known as the bamboo dragonfly or Chinese top (Chinese zhuqingting (竹蜻蜓), Japanese taketombo 竹蜻蛉), is a toy helicopter rotor that flies up when its shaft is rapidly spun. This helicopter-like top originated in Warring States period China around 400 BC, and was the object of early experiments by English engineer George Cayley, the inventor of modern aeronautics.In China, the earliest known flying toys consisted of feathers at the end of a stick, which was rapidly spun between the hands and released into flight. "While the Chinese top was no more than a toy, it is perhaps the first tangible device of what we may understand as a helicopter."The Jin dynasty Daoist philosopher Ge Hong's (c. 317) book Baopuzi (抱樸子 "Master Who Embraces Simplicity") mentioned a flying vehicle in what Joseph Needham calls "truly an astonishing passage".

Some have made flying cars [feiche 飛車] with wood from the inner part of the jujube tree, using ox-leather (straps) fastened to returning blades so as to set the machine in motion [huan jian yi yin chiji 環劍以引其機]. Others have had the idea of making five snakes, six dragons and three oxen, to meet the "hard wind" [gangfeng 罡風] and ride on it, not stopping until they have risen to a height of forty li. That region is called [Taiqing 太清] (the purest of empty space). There the [qi] is extremely hard, so much so that it can overcome (the strength of) human beings. As the Teacher says: "The kite (bird) flies higher and higher spirally, and then only needs to stretch its two wings, beating the air no more, in order to go forward by itself. This is because it starts gliding (lit. riding) on the 'hard wind' [gangqi 罡炁]. Take dragons, for example; when they first rise they go up using the clouds as steps, and after they have attained a height of forty li then they rush forward effortlessly (lit. automatically) (gliding)." This account comes from the adepts [xianren 仙人], and is handed down to ordinary people, but they are not likely to understand it.

Needham concludes that Ge Hong was describing helicopter tops because "'returning (or revolving) blades' can hardly mean anything else, especially in close association with a belt or strap"; and suggests that "snakes", "dragons", and "oxen" refer to shapes of man-lifting kites. Other scholars interpret this Baopuzi passage mythologically instead of literally, based on its context's mentioning fantastic flights through chengqiao (乘蹻 "riding on tiptoe/stilts") and xian (仙 "immortal; adept") techniques. For instance, "If you can ride the arches of your feet, you will be able to wander anywhere in the world without hindrance from mountains or rivers … Whoever takes the correct amulet and gives serious thought to the process may travel a thousand miles by concentrating his thoughts for one double hour." Compare this translation.

Some build a flying vehicle from the pith of the jujube tree and have it drawn by a sword with a thong of buffalo hide at the end of its grip. Others let their thoughts dwell on the preparation of a joint rectangle from five serpents, six dragons, and three buffaloes, and mount in this for forty miles to the region known as Paradise.

This Chinese helicopter toy was introduced into Europe and "made its earliest appearances in Renaissance European paintings and in the drawings of Leonardo da Vinci." The toy helicopter appears in a c. 1460 French picture of the Madonna and Child at the Musée de l'Ancien Évêché in Le Mans, and in a 16th-century stained glass panel at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. A c. 1560 picture by Pieter Breughel the Elder at the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna depicts a helicopter top with three airscrews."The helicopter top in China led to nothing but amusement and pleasure, but fourteen hundred years later it was to be one of the key elements in the birth of modern aeronautics in the West." Early Western scientists developed flying machines based upon the original Chinese model. The Russian polymath Mikhail Lomonosov developed a spring-driven coaxial rotor in 1743, and the French naturalist Christian de Launoy created a bow drill device with contra-rotating feather propellers.In 1792, George Cayley began experimenting with helicopter tops, which he later called "rotary wafts" or "elevating fliers". His landmark (1809) article "On Aerial Navigation" pictured and described a flying model with two propellers (constructed from corks and feathers) powered by a whalebone bow drill. "In 1835 Cayley remarked that while the original toy would rise no more than about 20 or 25 feet (6 or 7.5 metres), his improved models would 'mount upward of 90 ft (27 metres) into the air'. This then was the direct ancestor of the helicopter rotor and the aircraft propeller."Discussing the history of Chinese inventiveness, the British scientist, sinologist, and historian Joseph Needham wrote, "Some inventions seem to have arisen merely from a whimsical curiosity, such as the 'hot air balloons' made from eggshells which did not lead to any aeronautical use or aerodynamic discoveries, or the zoetrope which did not lead onto the kinematograph, or the helicopter top which did not lead to the helicopter."

Black-shouldered kite

The black-shouldered kite (Elanus axillaris), also known as the Australian black-shouldered kite, is a small raptor found in open habitat throughout Australia. It resembles similar species found in Africa, Eurasia and North America, including the black-winged kite, a species that has in the past also been called "black-shouldered kite". Measuring around 35 cm (14 in) in length with a wingspan of 80–100 cm (31–39 in), the adult black-shouldered kite has predominantly grey-white plumage and prominent black markings above its red eyes. It gains its name from the black patches on its wings. The primary call is a clear whistle, uttered in flight and while hovering. It can be confused with the related letter-winged kite in Australia, which is distinguished by the striking black markings under its wings

The species forms monogamous pairs, breeding between August and January. The birds engage in aerial courtship displays which involve high circling flight and ritualised feeding mid-air. Three or four eggs are laid and incubated for around thirty days. Chicks are fully fledged within five weeks of hatching and can hunt for mice within a week of leaving the nest. Juveniles disperse widely from the home territory. The black-shouldered kite hunts in open grasslands, searching for its prey by hovering and systematically scanning the ground. It mainly eats small rodents, particularly the introduced house mouse, and has benefitted from the modification of the Australian landscape by agriculture. It is rated as least concern on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)'s Red List of Endangered species.

Chakhar Mongolian

The Chakhar (Mongolian script: ᠴᠠᠬᠠᠷ Čaqar, Cyrillic: Цахар, Tsakhar; simplified Chinese: 察哈尔; traditional Chinese: 察哈爾; pinyin: cháhā'ěr (or Cháhār)) dialect is a variety of Mongolian spoken in the central region of Inner Mongolia. It is phonologically close to Khalkha and is the basis for the standard pronunciation of Mongolian in Inner Mongolia.

Index of kite articles

This index of kite articles (excluding persons whose name is "Kite" with exceptions for noteworthy flight connections); excluding articles on birds called "kites" for which see Kite (bird). Excluded also are works of literature, film, and non-flight art, non-tethered airplane names, and articles on non-aeronautical kiting like in gaming, programming, or money. What is included are aeronautical kite system topics.

Topics included below specially affect the kite's wing, kite's essential tether, kite's mooring, uses of kites, kite applications, and kite control systems. Events and people that have noteworthy impact on the world of aeronautical kites are included. Science and engineering articles that highly impact the kite world are included. Paravane (water kite) articles are included.

Kingdom of Crooked Mirrors

Kingdom of Crooked Mirrors (Russian: Королевство Кривых Зеркал, translit. Korolevstvo krivykh zerkal) is a 1963 Soviet fairy tale film directed by Aleksandr Rou based on the novel, Kingdom of Crooked Mirrors by Vitali Gubarev.

At the end of 2007 the Russia TV filmed a musical remake - with the same name, featuring stars of Russian scene Nikolay Baskov, Alla Pugacheva, and Tolmachevy Sisters. The original film contains introduction music and a fairytale style of the early 1960s.

The film was also behind the inspiration for a restaurant in Moscow to only hire twins as waiting staff.


Korshunov (Russian: Коршунов, from коршун meaning kite (bird)) is a Russian masculine surname, its feminine counterpart is Korshunova. It may refer to

Andrei Korshunov (born 1965), Russian equestrian

Ekaterina Korshunova (born 1988), Russian shooter

Inga Korshunova, Russian pair skater

Maksim Korshunov (born 1977), Russian swimmer

Maksim Korshunov (footballer) (born 1993), Russian football midfielder

Nikolay Korshunov (born 1978), Russian musician and journalist

Ruslana Korshunova (1987–2008), Kazakhstani model of Russian descent

Sergei Korshunov (1928–1982), Soviet football player

Tatiana Korshunova (born 1956), Soviet sprint canoer

Viktor Korshunov (1929–2015), Russian actor

Vladislav Korshunov (born 1983), Russian rugby union player

Yuri Korshunov (1933–2002), Russian entomologist

List of avian humanoids

Avian humanoids (people with the characteristics of birds) are a common motif in folklore and popular fiction.

Nahuatl name

A Nahuatl name is a given name in the Nahuatl language that was used by the Aztecs.

Order of the Golden Kite

The Order of the Golden Kite (金鵄勲章, Kinshi Kunshō) was an order of the Empire of Japan, established on 12 February 1890 by Emperor Meiji "in commemoration of Jimmu Tennō, the Romulus of Japan". It was officially abolished by the Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers of Occupied Japan in 1947 after World War II.

PZL S-4 Kania 2

The PZL S-4 Kania 2 was a Polish trainer and glider towing aircraft of the 1950s, not built in series. The first prototype was designated S-3 Kania. There is also a helicopter named PZL Kania.

Ratargul Swamp Forest

Ratargul Swamp Forest is a freshwater swamp forest located in Gowain River, Fatehpur Union, Gowainghat, Sylhet, Bangladesh. It is the only swamp forest located in Bangladesh and one of the few freshwater swamp forest in the world. The forest is naturally conserved under the Department of Forestry, Govt. of Bangladesh.

Its area is 3, 325.61 acre including 504 acre declared as the animal sanctuary in 2015. It is known as the Amazon of Bangla and Sundarbans of Sylhet. This only swamp forest in Bangladesh is located 26 kilometres (16 mi) far from Sylhet. The forest's name comes from the word, "Rata" or "Pati" tree, used by the locals of Sylhet.

The evergreen forest is situated by the river Goain and linked with the channel Chengir Khal. Most of the trees growing here are the Millettia pinnata (করচ গাছ Koroch tree). The forest is submerged under 20–30 feet water in the rainy season. For the rest of the year, the water level is about 10 feet deep.

The Paddock and the Mouse

"The Paddock and the Mouse" is a poem by the 15th-century Scottish poet Robert Henryson and part of his collection of moral fables known as the Morall Fabillis of Esope the Phrygian. It is written in Middle Scots. As with the other tales in the collection, appended to it is a moralitas which elaborates on the moral that the fable is supposed to contain.

The tale is an expansion of Aesop's Fable of The Frog and the Mouse and concerns a mouse that desires to cross a stream. A paddock offers his assistance and, to prove his trustworthiness, discusses the difference between appearing and being virtuous. As the two cross the stream tied together, the paddock betrays and tries to drown the mouse. Their struggle is seen by a kite (bird), who grabs and kills them both.

The Tale of Tsar Saltan

The Tale of Tsar Saltan, of His Son the Renowned and Mighty Bogatyr Prince Gvidon Saltanovich, and of the Beautiful Princess-Swan (Russian: «Сказка о царе Салтане, о сыне его славном и могучем богатыре князе Гвидоне Салтановиче и о прекрасной царевне Лебеди», romanized: Skazka o tsare Saltane, o syne yevo slavnom i moguchem bogatyre knyaze Gvidone Saltanoviche i o prekrasnoy tsarevne Lebedi) is an 1831 fairy tale in verse by Alexander Pushkin. As a folk tale it is classified as Aarne–Thompson type 707 for its dancing water, singing apple and speaking bird.

Traditional colors of Japan

The traditional colors of Japan are a collection of colors traditionally used in Japanese literature, textiles such as kimono, and other Japanese arts and crafts.

USS Kite (AMS-22)

USS Kite (MSC(O)-22/AMS-22/YMS-374) was a YMS-1-class minesweeper of the YMS-135 subclass built for the United States Navy during World War II.


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