The Importance of Raptors in Ecosystem

Raptors are characterized by superb eyesight, powerful wings and claws, well known charismatics groups of birds. For most of culture, eagles and buzzards are traditionally a symbol of strength, courage and freedom and appear on flags, motives from ancient civilization to present. Owls, on the other hand, have gained different meanings in different societies, they are mostly associated with death in Anatolia.

The diet of raptors spreads to a wage rage from beetles to juvenile deer. For example, while Common Kestrel (Falco tinnuculus) are feeding on relatively small preys like mice, grasshoppers, a Golden Eagle (Aquila chrysaetos) can hunt a hen easily.

The fact that raptors are located at the top of the food pyramid and that many of them can be fed with carcasses at the same time. They have positive contributions to human life in many ways. Raptors play an important role to balance the ecosystem by feeding with pests, locusts, snakes, lizards, mice, rats that are not welcomed by humans. Vultures consume carcasses that can lead to epidemic diseases. It has been found that a pair of Barn Owl (Tyto alba) with 6 chicks have caught more than 30 rodents in one night only.

Despite the fact that they are the key elements of the healthy and sustainable ecosystem, the killing and injuries of the raptors dues to various human-sourced activities, especially illegal hunting and pesticides, present a challenge as a matter of solution.