Pacific Baza

Did you know?

The Pacific Baza has golden-yellow, domed eyes which are placed on the sides of its head. This gives it excellent side vision, useful for finding mantids among the leaves.

A double cry 'ee-tui, ee-tui' or 'whee-choo, whee-choo' the second note lower.
Facts and Figures
Research Species: 
Minimum Size: 
Maximum Size: 
Average size: 
Average weight: 
Breeding season: 
October to February
Clutch Size: 
2 to 3
29 days
Nestling Period: 
35 days
Conservation Status
Basic Information
Scientific Name: 
Atlas Number: 
What does it look like?

The Pacific Baza is a medium-sized, long-tailed hawk with a prominent crest. It is slim-bodied, with a narrow head and neck. The wings are paddle-shaped, well-rounded and deeply 'fingered'. The head, neck and breast are grey and the underparts are white with bold dark banding. The legs are short with weak toes. The eyes are golden-yellow and domed, placed well on the side of the head, giving a slightly 'pop-eyed' look. The female is heavier and browner on the crown than the male. It is also known as the Crested Hawk or Baza, or the Pacific Cuckoo-Falcon.

Similar species: 

The Pacific Baza's crest and boldly barred abdomen make this bird of prey distinctive. The breast is much more finely barred than on theCollared SparrowhawkAccipiter cirrhocephalus, or the Brown GoshawkA. fasciatus.

Where does it live?

The Pacific Baza is found in tropical and subtropical forest and woodland in northern and eastern Australia, but rarely south of Sydney. It is also found in the Indo-Malayan peninsula, most of mainland New Guinea and nearby islands and the Solomon Islands.


Pacific Bazas are found in tropical and subtropical woodlands and forest and sometimes grasslands, farmlands and urban areas. They prefer well-watered areas.

Seasonal movements: 

Little is known of their movements; they are considered sedentary in some regions and dispersive or migratory in others.

What does it do?

The Pacific Baza's favourite prey is large insects, particularly stick insects and mantids, and frogs. They sometimes eat fruit as well. Bazas will move through the canopy, or perch and watch, then make short dives, with feet extended, to snatch prey from the foliage or from the air.


The Pacific Baza builds a flimsy flat nest of sticks, which is placed high in the upper leafy branches of a tree. Often the nest blows down. They are very secretive when breeding and the parent sits quietly on the nest, with its long tail sticking out over the rim. Both parents brood and feed the chicks. Bazas have a spectacular tumbling display-flight during courtship.

Living with us

Some clearing may have been beneficial to the Pacific Baza, by opening up areas for hunting.

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