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European Honey-buzzard Pernis apivorus
BirdLife is updating this factsheet for the 2016 Red List
Please email us with any relevant information

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2013 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern

Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency High
Land mass type   Average mass -


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 8,990,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals 280000-420000 poor Estimated 2012
Population trend Decreasing Suspected -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 11.8 - - -
Population justification: Ferguson-Lees et al. (2001) estimated the population to number 100,000-1,000,000 individuals. In Europe, the breeding population is estimated to number 118,000-171,000 breeding pairs, equating to 235,000-342,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015). Europe forms approximately 82% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 287,000-417,000 mature individuals, although further validation of this estimate is needed. Hence a revised global estimate is 280,000-420,000 mature individuals.
Trend justification: The population is suspected to be decreasing. In Europe the population size is estimated to be decreasing by less than 25% in 35.4 years (three generations) (BirdLife International 2015).

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Albania Native Extant Yes      
Algeria Native Extant        
Andorra Native Extant Yes      
Angola Native Extant        
Armenia Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Austria Native Extant Yes      
Azerbaijan Native Extant Yes      
Bahrain Native Extant     Yes  
Belarus Native Extant Yes      
Belgium Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Benin Native Extant        
Bosnia and Herzegovina Native Extant        
Botswana Native Extant        
Bulgaria Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Burkina Faso Vagrant Extant        
Burundi Vagrant Extant        
Cameroon Native Extant        
Central African Republic Native Extant        
Chad Native Extant        
Congo Native Extant        
Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Native Extant        
Côte d'Ivoire Native Extant        
Croatia Native Extant Yes      
Cyprus Native Extant     Yes  
Czech Republic Native Extant Yes      
Denmark Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Djibouti Native Extant        
Egypt Native Extant        
Equatorial Guinea Native Extant        
Eritrea Native Extant        
Estonia Native Extant Yes      
Ethiopia Native Extant        
Faroe Islands (to Denmark) Vagrant Extant        
Finland Native Extant Yes      
France Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Gabon Native Extant        
Gambia Native Extant        
Georgia Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Germany Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Ghana Native Extant        
Gibraltar (to UK) Native Extant     Yes  
Greece Native Extant     Yes Yes
Guinea Native Extant        
Guinea-Bissau Native Extant        
Hungary Native Extant Yes      
Iceland Vagrant Extant        
Iran, Islamic Republic of Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Iraq Native Extant     Yes  
Ireland Vagrant Extant        
Israel Native Extant     Yes  
Italy Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Jordan Native Extant     Yes  
Kazakhstan Native Extant Yes      
Kenya Native Extant        
Kuwait Native Extant     Yes  
Latvia Native Extant Yes      
Lebanon Native Extant     Yes  
Liberia Native Extant        
Libya Native Extant        
Liechtenstein Native Extant Yes      
Lithuania Native Extant Yes      
Luxembourg Native Extant Yes      
Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Native Extant       Yes
Malawi Native Extant        
Mali Native Extant        
Malta Native Extant     Yes  
Mauritania Native Extant        
Moldova Native Extant Yes      
Montenegro Native Extant Yes      
Morocco Native Extant        
Mozambique Native Extant        
Namibia Native Extant        
Netherlands Native Extant Yes      
Niger Native Extant        
Nigeria Native Extant        
Norway Native Extant Yes      
Oman Native Extant   Yes Yes  
Palestinian Authority Territories Native Extant     Yes  
Poland Native Extant Yes      
Portugal Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Qatar Native Extant     Yes  
Romania Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Russia Native Extant Yes      
Russia (Central Asian) Native Extant Yes      
Russia (European) Native Extant Yes      
Rwanda Native Extant        
Saudi Arabia Native Extant     Yes  
Senegal Native Extant        
Serbia Native Extant Yes      
Seychelles Vagrant Extant        
Sierra Leone Native Extant        
Slovakia Native Extant Yes      
Slovenia Native Extant Yes      
Somalia Vagrant Extant        
South Africa Native Extant        
South Sudan Native Extant     Yes  
Spain Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Sudan Native Extant        
Swaziland Vagrant Extant        
Sweden Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Switzerland Native Extant Yes      
Syria Native Extant     Yes  
Tanzania Native Extant        
Togo Native Extant        
Tunisia Native Extant        
Turkey Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Uganda Native Extant        
Ukraine Native Extant Yes      
United Arab Emirates Native Extant   Yes Yes  
United Kingdom Native Extant Yes      
Uzbekistan Vagrant Extant        
Western Sahara Native Extant        
Yemen Native Extant     Yes  
Zambia Native Extant        
Zimbabwe Native Extant        

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Armenia Jermook site factsheet
Armenia Mount Ara site factsheet
Austria Lower course of the Traun site factsheet
Belarus Bielaviežškaja Pušča site factsheet
Belarus Dražbitka-Svina site factsheet
Belarus Kaz'jany site factsheet
Belgium Entre-Sambre-et-Meuse site factsheet
Belgium Haute Sûre/Ardenne méridionale site factsheet
Belgium Hautes Fagnes/Eifel site factsheet
Belgium Lesse et Lomme site factsheet
Belgium Ronde Put site factsheet
Belgium Sinémurienne site factsheet
Bulgaria Byala Reka site factsheet
Bulgaria Dobrostan site factsheet
Bulgaria Kamchiyska Mountain site factsheet
Bulgaria Karlukovski Karst site factsheet
Bulgaria Kotlenska Mountain site factsheet
Bulgaria Persenk site factsheet
Bulgaria Vrachanski Balkan site factsheet
Bulgaria Western Balkan site factsheet
Bulgaria Western Rhodopes site factsheet
Croatia Danube and Drava rivers' lowland areas site factsheet
Croatia Lower Sava river site factsheet
Czech Republic Confluence of the Morava (March) and Dyje (Thaya) rivers - Tvrdonicko site factsheet
Czech Republic Doupov hills site factsheet
Czech Republic Krivoklatsko (Krivoklatsko region) site factsheet
Czech Republic Krkonose mountains (Giant mountains) site factsheet
Czech Republic Pálava site factsheet
Czech Republic Sumava mountains (Bohemian forest) site factsheet
Czech Republic Trebonsko (Trebon region) site factsheet
Estonia Alam-Pedja site factsheet
Estonia Lahemaa site factsheet
Estonia Otepää site factsheet
Estonia Põhja-Liivimaa site factsheet
France Barthes de l'Adour site factsheet
France Bassigny site factsheet
France Bassin du Drugeon: Pontarlier-Frasne site factsheet
France Boucle de Pose et de Muids site factsheet
France Brenne centrale site factsheet
France Brenne: Forêt de la Petite-Brenne site factsheet
France Brenne: Forêt de Lancosme site factsheet
France Etang et Forêt de Villefermoy site factsheet
France Etangs d'Argonne site factsheet
France Etangs de Sologne: St Viatre, Marcilly-en-Gault et forêt de Bruadan site factsheet
France Forêt d'altitude du Jura : forêt du Risoux site factsheet
France Forêt de Chaux site factsheet
France Forêt de Haguenau site factsheet
France Forêt de Saou site factsheet
France Forêt domaniale de la Harth site factsheet
France Forêts de Thiérache : Trelon, Fourmies, Hirson et St-Michel site factsheet
France Forêts du Perche site factsheet
France Forêts picardes : Compiègne, Laigue, Ourscamp site factsheet
France Forêts picardes : massif de Retz site factsheet
France Forêts picardes : massif des Trois Forêts et bois du Roi site factsheet
France Gorges de la Dordogne site factsheet
France Gorges de la Sioule site factsheet
France Gorges de la Truyère site factsheet
France Haut Val d'Allier site factsheet
France Haute chaîne du Jura: défilé de l'écluse, Etournel et Mont Vuache site factsheet
France Hautes Corbières site factsheet
France Hauts Plateaux du Vercors et Forêt des Coulmes site factsheet
France Lac du Der-Chantecoq et étangs latéraux site factsheet
France Lacs de la Forêt d'Orient site factsheet
France Massif des Vosges: Hautes Vosges site factsheet
France Massifs de Fontainebleau et zones humides adjacentes site factsheet
France Parc National des Cévennes site factsheet
France Parc National des Ecrins site factsheet
France Parc National du Mercantour site factsheet
France Plateau Ardennais site factsheet
France Pointe de Grave site factsheet
France Ried de Colmar et Sélestat site factsheet
France Sologne Bourbonnaise site factsheet
France Val de Chiers et environs de Spincourt site factsheet
France Vallée de la Conie et Beauce centrale site factsheet
France Vallée de la Loire : gorges de la Loire site factsheet
France Vallée de la Saône de Corre à Broye site factsheet
France Vallée du Rhin : Marckolsheim à Strasbourg site factsheet
France Vallées de la Scarpe et de l'Escaut site factsheet
Hungary Aggtelek Karst site factsheet
Hungary Bükk site factsheet
Hungary North Bakony site factsheet
Hungary Őrség site factsheet
Hungary Zemplén Mountains site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Alborz-e Markazi Protected Area site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Golestan site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Lisar Protected Area site factsheet
Israel Hula valley site factsheet
Israel Jezre'el, Harod and Bet She'an valleys site factsheet
Israel Northern lower Jordan valley site factsheet
Israel Southern Arava valley and Elat mountains site factsheet
Italy Apennines from Passo del Cerreto to Monte Caligi site factsheet
Italy Gargano Promontory and Capitanata Wetlands site factsheet
Italy Gran Paradiso site factsheet
Italy Ligurian Alps site factsheet
Italy Maiella, Pizzi and Frentani mountains site factsheet
Italy Matese site factsheet
Italy Piave river site factsheet
Italy River Biferno site factsheet
Italy Susa and Chisone valleys site factsheet
Lithuania Adutiskis & Guntauninkai forest complex site factsheet
Lithuania Buda-Pravieniskes forest complex site factsheet
Lithuania Labanoras Regional Park site factsheet
Lithuania Plinksiai state Nature Reserve and its environs site factsheet
Lithuania Rudninkai forest complex site factsheet
Lithuania Vainutas, Begedziai, Zasyciai & neighbouring forests complex site factsheet
Lithuania Zalioji & Gitenai forests complex site factsheet
Luxembourg Region Kiischpelt site factsheet
Luxembourg Upper Valley of the Our site factsheet
Luxembourg Upper Valley of the Sure site factsheet
Netherlands Drents-Friese Wold site factsheet
Netherlands Veluwe site factsheet
Poland Augustów forest site factsheet
Poland Bialowieza Forest site factsheet
Poland Bieszczady Mountains site factsheet
Poland Forest at Drawa River site factsheet
Poland Knyszyn Forest site factsheet
Poland Pisz forest site factsheet
Poland Roztocze site factsheet
Poland Sieniawa Forest site factsheet
Poland Slonne Mountains site factsheet
Poland Solska Forest site factsheet
Portugal Cabeção site factsheet
Portugal Gerês mountains site factsheet
Romania Baraolt Mountains - Bodoc site factsheet
Romania Dealurile Homoroadelor site factsheet
Romania Dealurile Nordice ale Munţilor Făgăraş site factsheet
Romania Dealurile Târnavelor - Valea Nirajului site factsheet
Romania Defileul Inferior al Mureşului site factsheet
Romania Piatra Şoimului - Scorţeni - Gârleni site factsheet
Romania Podişul Hârtibaciului site factsheet
Romania Subcarpaţii Vrancei site factsheet
Romania Trascău Mountains site factsheet
Romania Vânători - Neamţ site factsheet
Slovakia Horna Orava site factsheet
Slovakia Malé Karpaty site factsheet
Slovakia Slanské hills site factsheet
Slovakia Volovské hills site factsheet
Spain Ancares mountains site factsheet
Spain Babia-Somiedo site factsheet
Spain Gistreo and Coto mountain ranges site factsheet
Spain La Demanda mountains site factsheet
Spain Montes Aquilanos range site factsheet
Spain Peña Labra and Cordel mountain ranges site factsheet
Spain Riaño site factsheet
Spain Urbión and Cebollera Mountain Ranges site factsheet
Sweden Färnebofjärden site factsheet
Sweden Sjöängen - Svartån site factsheet
Turkey Kaz Mountains site factsheet
United Kingdom New Forest site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Forest Boreal Major breeding
Forest Subtropical/Tropical Dry Suitable non-breeding
Forest Temperate Major breeding
Savanna Dry Suitable non-breeding
Altitude 0 - 2000 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact

Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Agriculture & aquaculture Wood & pulp plantations / Agro-industry plantations Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Ecosystem conversion
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals / Persecution/control Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Species mortality
Biological resource use Logging & wood harvesting / Unintentional effects: (large scale) [harvest] Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Ecosystem conversion
Energy production & mining Renewable energy Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Unknown Unknown
Ecosystem degradation, Species mortality
Human intrusions & disturbance Recreational activities Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Declines Medium Impact: 6
Species disturbance
Pollution Agricultural & forestry effluents / Herbicides and pesticides Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 4
Indirect ecosystem effects


Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Sport Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent
Sport hunting/specimen collecting - - - Subsistence, National
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - - Subsistence, National

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2016) Species factsheet: Pernis apivorus. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2016) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 24/10/2016.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Accipitridae (Hawks, Eagles)
Species name author (Linnaeus, 1758)
Population size 280000-420000 mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 8,990,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species
- 2015 European Red List assessment