Identify this bird

It looks like a very large raven but has the feathered/furred legs and curved talons of a raptor. The whole body is dark. I haven’t had a good sight of the beak except that it too is dark - or rather, I did not see any flash of colour. It was perched in a tree quite close by - perhaps as close as 100 feet - but the branches were preventing me from getting a clear view. Location is NE Scotland.

While it was there, other birds were conspicuously absent; now it’s gone, a variety of birds have flown past.

I expect it was an exceptionally large raven with overdeveloped legs (to compensate for the size), but could it be something else? It did look very much like a black eagle, except that has a yellow beak and is normally in India.

Most likely the dark phase of Rough-legged Hawk/Rough-legged Buzzard. It’s the only likely raptor found in Britain with completely feathered legs. Another view. Most individuals of this species are paler, but a few are dark.

That could well be it. Can they have dark beaks?

The bill is actually black. The bare skin at the base of the bill, or cere, is yellow, but could be inconspicuous. Likewise, the white patch at the base of the bill may not be that obvious in some individuals. Unless you got a really good look at it with binoculars, you might not notice these.

No binoculars. I only saw the feet and talons because they caught the light - low sun angle.

So, umm… 43 minutes. The Dope is on slow today. :slight_smile: