[SASHIBA (Gray-faced Buzzard-Eaglej ]
(Scientific name: Butastur indicus )
* When you hear a high-pitched cry like pickwee from a bird soaring high above, you know Sashibas are coming back again. This is when you really feel that fall has arrived.
* A Sashiba is a kind of hawk and almost as big as a crow. Sashibas breed during the warm months on the Mainland, in Kyushu and Shikoku. In fall, they migrate south to Amami, Okinawa and even farther to Southeast Asia. They can be seen in Amami from mid-October to early April.
* They often perch on top of trees around farms, telephone poles or on electric wires. They catch grasshoppers, frogs, rats, lizards, snakes and even birds. When searching for prey from the perch, with their sharp eyes, they look pretty fierce and powerful.
* Just the other day, when I was driving near Itton Village in the direction of Akaogi, a Sashiba flew across my car, all of a sudden, and landed on the grassy shoulder of the road. The next moment, it was already in the air with a lizard in its claws. Never have I witnessed the hunting of Sashibas at such a close range. I was stirred and excited.
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