A distinctive bird of prey, with white head and breast, and red-brown wings and tail.
The wing tips are black. The rounded tail helps distinguish it from the Red kite and Black kite.
In far north Queensland, the breeding season is between April and June. Both the male and female build a nest out of large sticks and line it with leaves, and will often nest in the same site year after year.
They mainly feed on dead fish and crabs, but will also catch live fish, or other small mammals and birds.