Are ‘balancing and wheeling’ with a sense of ‘flying in a curving way while keeping itself balanced’?-- wheeling is circling; balancing is adjusting to the wind currents. Have you ever watched a kite (the bird) or another raptor hovering, Haihao?
Should ‘as he kept watch over the jungle’ be reworded to: ‘as he kept watching over the jungle’ as the current form? – No. ‘To keep watch’ is idiomatic: it means to act as watchman or sentinel.
Should ‘give the Kite call for’ be reworded as: give the Kite a call for’? – No. The ‘kite call’ is the vocabulary in kite language for the subsequent quotation (‘We be… etc’)
Does ‘mark’ in ‘Mark my trail!’ mean ‘watch’ or ‘notice’? – Yes, ‘notice and remember’.
Does ‘a fair length’ mean ‘fairly long’? – Yes, with the added meaning of ‘attractive’: Kaa is a python with vanity.
Could ‘falling on my last hunt’ be reworded as: falling on the prey at my last hunt? – No; just falling from the tree. And quit trying to reword Kipling, Haihao. He is a competent writer.
I am sorry for my ignorance but I am afriad I have to confess that I still can’t clearly tell a Tobi from other similar birds. I must have seen some of them more than a few times in Ueno Zoo or somewhere else but perhaps due to my ‘mukanshin’ with birds and there are too many ‘Karasu’ (crow or raven?) here in Tokyo, I really haven’t got the confidence of recognizing a kite… :oops: One more reason is perhaps my prejudice against those raptors has turned me being blind to them while fond of others such as seagulls.