Do Hunting Raptors Start Fires Deliberately? - Journal of Ethnobiology

The regular attendance of raptors at grass and scrub fires is well known. The birds hunt potential prey animals displaced by the flames. However, proof is now available from Australia that some individual Black Kites (Milvus migrans), Whistling Kites (Haliastur sphenurus) and Brown Falcons (Falco berigora) deliberately spread fire by carrying burning twigs and dropping them elsewhere to start new blazes. They seem to do this largely when an existing fire is being extinguished, seemingly in order to keep it going. The use of fire as a tool has previously been thought to be unique to human beings, but it may well have first been used by raptors.

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