Black-and-chestnut Eagle Spizaetus isidori Scientific name definitions

Tomás Rivas-Fuenzalida, Juan M. Grande, Sebastián Kohn, Felix Hernán Vargas, and Santiago Zuluaga Castañeda
Version: 2.0 — Published November 23, 2022


Systematics History

Falco Isidori Des Murs, 1845, Revue Zoologique 1845:175. Type locality given as "Santa-Fé de Bogota" (11).

Junior synonym is Spizaetus devillei Dubois, 1874, Bulletins de l'Académie Royale des Sciences, des Lettres et des Beaux-arts de Belgique 38:129 (12). Later realized to be juvenile and subadult specimens of Black-and-chestnut Eagle (13, 14).

Previously, Black-and-chestnut Eagle was classified as Lophotriornis isidori, Falco isidori, and then in a monotypic genus as Oroaetus isidori. Phylogenetic analysis of DNA sequence data, from both mitochondrial and nuclear genes, suggests that this species is nested within the genus Spizaetus (15, 16, 17).

Geographic Variation

None reported.



Related Species

In phylogenetic studies using both nuclear and mitochondrial DNA sequence data, Black-and-chestnut Eagle has been found to be part of the genus Spizaetus, where it appears to be sister to Ornate Hawk-Eagle (Spizaetus ornatus). Together, these two species appear to be sister to Black-and-white Hawk-Eagle (Spizaetus melanoleucus), with Black Hawk-Eagle (Spizaetus tyrannus) sister to the entire group (15, 16, 17). The genus Spizaetus previously also included the Old World hawk-eagles, but genetic data shows that these two groups are paraphyletic. The exact relationships of the Old World hawk-eagles are not clear, but they may be most closely related to Black Eagle (Ictinaetus malaiensis), or to the entire radiation of aquiline eagles, which includes Aquila, Hieraaetus, Clanga, and Spizaetus, among others; the Old World hawk-eagles have subsequently been classified in a new genus, Nisaetus (17).


The genus Spizaetus comes from the Greek Spizias for "hawk" and Aëtos for "eagle". Vieillot (18) described the genus as follows: “Spizaëtus are birds of prey that we call eagles, according to their size, but they differ from true eagles in that they have wings and legs of a hawk or goshawk, that is, wings shorter than the tail, tall and thin tarsi and weak fingers, from there comes the name of goshawk-eagles or hawk-eagles.” The specific epithet isidori honors Professor Isidore Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire; Des Murs (11), in their original description of the species, wrote “we have dedicated, as a tribute of our respect, to Professor Isidore Geoffroy-Saint-Hilaire...” (19). The common name in English is derived from its general black-and-chestnut coloration. The common names in Spanish are varied and depend on the region and country, for instance: "Águila crestada," "Águila real," or "Guamán" (in Colombia), "Águila andina," "Gavilán cachudo," or "Ugabanga" (in Ecuador), "Águila inca," "Monero," or "Anca" (in Peru), and "Águila poma" (in Argentina). In southern Colombia and northern Ecuador it is also called "Cigüeña" (Stork).

Fossil History

Information needed.

Recommended Citation

Rivas-Fuenzalida, T., J. M. Grande, S. Kohn, F. H. Vargas, and S. Zuluaga Castañeda (2022). Black-and-chestnut Eagle (Spizaetus isidori), version 2.0. In Birds of the World (S. M. Billerman, Editor). Cornell Lab of Ornithology, Ithaca, NY, USA. https://doi.org/10.2173/bow.baceag2.02