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Rare Kansas Raptors

Some raptor species have been found only a few times in Kansas.
The county dot maps indicate where those sightings occurred.

Swallow-tailed Kite

Elanoides forficatus

According to N. S. Goss in his “History of the Birds of Kansas,” published in 1891, the swallow-tailed kite was an irregular summer resident around the turn of the century. The most recent sighting occurred near Topeka in 1972.

White-tailed Kite

Elanus leucurus

In 1989, a pair nested in Pottawatomie County. The nest and young were destroyed in a thunderstorm. Additional sightings have occurred in Kiowa County in 2000 and Finney County in 2001.

Harris’ Hawk

Parabuteo unicinctus

The only record of nesting Harris’s hawks was in Meade County in 1963. There are six other sight records. The most recent was in Cowley County in 2000.

Gray Hawk

Asturina nitida

One record has been accepted in Kansas. It was seen in Clay County in 1990.

Western Screech-Owl

Otus kennicottii

There are less than ten records of western screech-owls in Kansas. All of them are from Morton County along the Cimarron River.

Flammulated Owl

Otus flammeolus

One bird was observed for about 10 minutes in May of 2000 in Morton County at the Cimarron National Grasslands.