Some 90% of Africa’s “spectacular” birds of prey are under threat, research by a Scottish university has found.
According to researchers from the University of St Andrews and the Peregrine Fund, raptors lead an “increasingly perilous existence” in unprotected land in Africa.
A report from the team found habitat, food and breeding sites for the birds have been drastically reduced.
Major threats include persecution from ivory poachers and farmers, ritual killings, poisoning and collisions with wind turbines.
The report, published in the Nature Ecology & Evolution journal, warned of massive declines among nearly 42 species.
Monitoring began in West Africa in the 1970s, where the average rate of decline was more than twice that of other regions – but some species are now deemed to be “vanishing into oblivion” by ornithologists, the researchers said.