The gabar goshawk is generally considered to be sedentary, but immature birds are somewhat nomadic and small migratory movements have been recorded in parts of its range (2) (6). Although often observed alone, pairs are also common, particularly during the breeding season when the male can be seen chasing the female through trees, or calling earnestly from the perch. The small platform nest is typically made from thin twigs and positioned in a vertical fork in the crown of a thorny tree (2). To supplement the nest, the gabar goshawk is known to collect social spiders on their webs, which are then incorporated into the nest. The function of this unusual practice is unclear but the subsequent webs that spread over the nest probably act as camouflage, whilst the spiders may consume arthropods that otherwise would parasitize the chicks (2) (7) (8). The female usually lays two eggs, which are incubated for a little over a month before hatching (2).
Small birds form the bulk of the gabar goshwak’s diet, with small mammals, reptiles and insects also taken on occasion. Prey is typically flushed from trees and caught following an energetic and persistent chase. Alternatively, the gabar goshawk hunts from the perch, swooping down to catch prey off the ground or in flight. Another technique is to rob the nests of colonial birds by clawing its way destructively through the nest top to snatch the nestlings within (2).