Family Falcons, Caracaras (Falconidae)

Least Concern

Carunculated Caracara (Phalcoboenus carunculatus)


French: Caracara caronculé German: Streifenkarakara Spanish: Caracara carunculado

Phalcoboenus carunculatus

Des Murs

, 1853,



Formerly treated as race of P. megalopterus, as was P. albogularis; the three form a species-group, in which some authors also include P. australis. Monotypic.


Andes from SW Colombia to S Ecuador.

Descriptive notes

50–56 cm; wingspan 112–119 cm. Mostly glossy black, but boldly patterned with white streaks on breast; underwing, lower belly, undertail coverts and tip of tail... read more


Usually silent. During interactions, utters grating and squealing barks; also may give long series... read more


Treeless areas of upper temperate zone, at 3000–4000 m; in páramo or grassy... read more

Food and feeding

Highly opportunistic. Diet includes worms, maggots, snails, fish, small rodents, birds, lizards, vegetable matter; said to take almost... read more


Eggs laid in Sept and Oct, young fledge in Jan, but one well-developed nestling collected in late May. Stick nest built on cliffs; nest... read more


Presumably sedentary. Outside breeding season, may gather in flocks of 100+ birds.

Status and conservation

Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Uncommon to locally common, with global population estimate of fewer than 10,000 individuals. In Colombia, commonest in... read more

Recommended citation

Bierregaard, R.O., Jr, Boesman, P. & Marks, J.S. (2020). Carunculated Caracara (Phalcoboenus carunculatus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 18 February 2020).