Scientific Name: Circaetus cinereus Afrikaans Name: Bruinslangarend
All snake eagles have rather large heads and prominent yellow eyes. Even though they are not immune to snake venom they still eat venomous snakes. Their heavily-scaled legs and feet and thick under-plumage offer them a degree of protection however. Although these eagles are sedentary hunters they are nomadic by nature and rarely breed in the same nest twice.
The Brown Snake Eagles resident at the Sanctuary is named Mfezi and Ringkhals. Mfezi has retinal eye damage and because they rely almost completely on eyesight to hunt, impaired vision will markedly decrease her chance of survival in the wild. Ringkhals came from the Dullstroom area with bilateral wing-tip oedema: extreme cold limited the blood supply to his wings causing their ends to become gangrenous and die.