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LC
Lesser Spotted Eagle Aquila pomarina

Justification
This species has an extremely large range, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the range size criterion (Extent of Occurrence <20,000 km2 combined with a declining or fluctuating range size, habitat extent/quality, or population size and a small number of locations or severe fragmentation). The population trend is not known, but the population is not believed to be decreasing sufficiently rapidly to approach the thresholds under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over ten years or three generations). The population size may be moderately small to large, but it is not believed to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in ten years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Taxonomic source(s)
Parry, S. J.; Clark, W. S.; Prakash, V. 2002. On the taxonomic status of the Indian Spotted Eagle Aquila hastata. Ibis 144: 665-675.

Taxonomic note
Aquila pomarina (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) has been split into A. pomarina and A. hastata following Parry et al. (2002).

Identification
55-65 cm. Wingspan 143-168 cm. A medium-sized, dark and compact eagle. Has broad wings with fingered tips and a small bill. Plumage is dark brown with paler head and neck and upperwing-coverts. Shows a small white primary patch above. The underwing-coverts are paler than the flight feathers when seen from below. Juveniles are darker above than adults. They have a rufous patch on the nape. The greater coverts, trailing edge of the wing and tail are tipped white.

Population justification
In Europe (which covers >95% of the breeding range), the breeding population is estimated to be 14,000-19,000 breeding pairs, equating to 42,000-57,000 individuals (BirdLife International 2004).

Trend justification
Although this species may have undergone a decline, recent annual counts in Israel suggest the population has recovered to some extent in recent years (D. Alon in litt. 2006).

Ecology
Behaviour Birds breeding in India are resident, but otherwise this is a migratory species, migrants leaving their breeding grounds between August and November, and returning in March and April (del Hoyo et al. 1994, Snow and Perrins 1998, Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). It relies heavily on soaring flight using thermals, and thus avoids large bodies of water (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Birds are generally observed singly or in pairs, but will congregate at plentiful food sources, and migrate in flocks (Snow and Perrins 1998, Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001, Porter and Aspinall 2010). Habitat It breeds near forest edges, preferring moist woodland; most nest in lowlands but it is recorded breeding up to 2,200 m in montane areas (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Diet Mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians are all taken as prey, with different prey types predominating in different parts of its range (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Breeding site Nests are built in trees, usually close to the forest edge (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Management information Where populations are struggling, productivity can be increased artificially by ensuring both chicks survive to fledging: in natural conditions one is almost always lost by siblicide, known as "cainism" (del Hoyo et al. 1994).

Threats
The main threats posed to this species are through habitat loss (notably the draining of wet forests and meadows, and on-going deforestation) and hunting (del Hoyo et al. 1994, Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). The latter is especially prevalent on migration, with possibly thousands of birds shot annually in Syria and Lebanon (del Hoyo et al. 1994). It is also very highly vulnerable to the impacts of potential wind energy developments (Strix 2012).

Related state of the world's birds case studies

References
del Hoyo, J.; Elliott, A.; Sargatal, J. 1994. Handbook of the Birds of the World, vol. 2: New World Vultures to Guineafowl. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona, Spain.

Ferguson-Lees, J.; Christie, D. A. 2001. Raptors of the world. Christopher Helm, London.

Porter, R.; Aspinall, S. 2010. Birds of the Middle East. Christopher Helm, London.

Snow, D. W.; Perrins, C. M. 1998. The Birds of the Western Palearctic vol. 1: Non-Passerines. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Strix. 2012. Developing and testing the methodology for assessing and mapping the sensitivity of migratory birds to wind energy development. BirdLife International, Cambridge.

Further web sources of information
Detailed species account from Birds in Europe: population estimates, trends and conservation status (BirdLife International 2004)

European Union Species Action Plan

Text account compilers
Bird, J., Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Harding, M., Khwaja, N.

Contributors
Alon, D., Flade, M., Galushin, V., Halmos, G., Hilton, G., Meyberg, B., Strazds, M.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Aquila pomarina. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/07/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/07/2014.

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.

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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.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Lesser spotted eagle (Aquila pomarina) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Accipitridae (Osprey, kites, hawks and eagles)
Species name author Brehm, 1831
Population size 42000-57000 mature individuals
Population trend Unknown
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 2,630,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species