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Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus

IUCN Red List Criteria

Near Threatened (criteria nearly met) A2bc+3bc+4bc 

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2013 Near Threatened
2012 Near Threatened
2008 Near Threatened
2005 Near Threatened
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 Low
Land mass type   Average mass -


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 10,700,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 4,380,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals medium Estimated 2001
Population trend Decreasing -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 5.7 - - -
Population justification: The global population is estimated to number 300,000-800,000 individuals, with 26,000-39,000 pairs in Europe.
Trend justification: The population is suspected to be in decline owing to ongoing habitat destruction. The European population (forming 25-49% of the global population) is continuing to suffer declines exceeding 30% in 10 years (three generations).

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Afghanistan Vagrant Extant      
Albania Native Extant     Yes
Algeria Native Extant      
Angola Native Extant      
Armenia Native Extant Yes    
Austria Native Extant Yes    
Azerbaijan Native Extant      
Belarus Native Extant Yes    
Belgium Vagrant Extant      
Benin Native Extant     Yes
Bosnia and Herzegovina Native Extant      
Botswana Native Extant      
Bulgaria Native Extant Yes   Yes
Burkina Faso Native Extant      
Burundi Native Extant      
Cameroon Native Extant      
Central African Republic Native Extant     Yes
Chad Native Extant      
China (mainland) Native Extant Yes    
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
Djibouti Vagrant Extant      
Egypt Native Extant      
Estonia Native Extant Yes    
Ethiopia Native Extant      
Finland Native Extant      
France Native Extant Yes   Yes
Gabon Vagrant Extant      
Gambia Native Extant     Yes
Georgia Native Extant Yes   Yes
Germany Native Extant     Yes
Ghana Native Extant     Yes
Gibraltar (to UK) Vagrant Extant      
Greece Native Extant     Yes
Hungary Native Extant Yes   Yes
Iran, Islamic Republic of Native Extant     Yes
Iraq Native Extant     Yes
Ireland Vagrant Extant      
Israel Native Extant      
Italy Native Extant Yes   Yes
Jordan Native Extant     Yes
Kazakhstan Native Extant Yes    
Kenya Native Extant      
Kuwait Vagrant Extant     Yes
Kyrgyzstan Unknown Extant      
Latvia Native Extant Yes    
Lebanon Native Extant     Yes
Lesotho Vagrant Extant   Yes  
Liberia Vagrant Extant   Yes Yes
Libya Native Extant      
Liechtenstein Native Extant      
Luxembourg Vagrant Extant      
Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Native Extant      
Malawi Native Extant      
Mali Native Extant      
Malta Native Extant     Yes
Mauritania Native Extant      
Moldova Native Extant Yes    
Montenegro Native Extant Yes   Yes
Morocco Vagrant Extant      
Mozambique Native Extant     Yes
Namibia Native Extant      
Netherlands Vagrant Extant      
Niger Native Extant     Yes
Nigeria Native Extant      
Norway Vagrant Extant      
Palestinian Authority Territories Native Extant     Yes
Poland Native Extant Yes    
Portugal Vagrant Extant      
Romania Native Extant Yes   Yes
Russia (Asian) Native Extant Yes    
Russia (Central Asian) Native Extant Yes    
Russia (European) Native Extant Yes   Yes
Rwanda Native Extant      
San Marino Unknown Extant     Yes
São Tomé e Príncipe Vagrant Extant      
Saudi Arabia Vagrant Extant     Yes
Senegal Native Extant      
Serbia Native Extant Yes   Yes
Seychelles Vagrant Extant      
Slovakia Native Extant Yes    
Slovenia Native Extant     Yes
Somalia Vagrant Extant      
South Africa Native Extant      
Spain Vagrant Extant      
Sudan Native Extant     Yes
Swaziland Vagrant Extant      
Sweden Native Extant      
Switzerland Native Extant      
Syria Native Extant     Yes
Tajikistan Vagrant Extant      
Tanzania Native Extant      
Togo Native Extant     Yes
Tunisia Native Extant      
Turkey Native Extant Yes   Yes
Turkmenistan Vagrant Extant      
Uganda Native Extant     Yes
Ukraine Native Extant Yes   Yes
United Arab Emirates Vagrant Extant     Yes
United Kingdom Vagrant Extant      
USA Vagrant Extant      
Uzbekistan Vagrant Extant      
Yemen Vagrant 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
Austria Parndorfer Platte and Heideboden site factsheet
Botswana Lake Ngami site factsheet
Botswana Okavango Delta site factsheet
Bulgaria Atanasovsko Lake site factsheet
Bulgaria Durankulak Lake site factsheet
Bulgaria Kaliakra site factsheet
Bulgaria Ropotamo Complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Shabla Lake Complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Zlatiata site factsheet
Cyprus Akhna dam site factsheet
Cyprus Akrotiri Peninsula - Episkopi Cliffs site factsheet
Cyprus Cape Greco site factsheet
Cyprus Karpasia Peninsula - Kleides Islands site factsheet
Cyprus Pafos Plain site factsheet
Cyprus Paramali River and Plateau site factsheet
Cyprus Xeros Valley and Hannoutaris Cliffs site factsheet
Hungary Alkaline lakes of Kiskunság site factsheet
Hungary Bihar Plain site factsheet
Hungary Borsodi-Mezőség site factsheet
Hungary Heves Plain site factsheet
Hungary Hortobágy and Tisza-to site factsheet
Hungary Kaszáló Wood of Abony site factsheet
Kazakhstan Alekseevskie steppe pine forests site factsheet
Kazakhstan Ereymentau Mountains site factsheet
Romania Alceului valley site factsheet
Romania Aliman - Adamclisi site factsheet
Romania Allah Bair - Capidava site factsheet
Romania Avrig - Scorei - Făgăraş site factsheet
Romania Babadag wood site factsheet
Romania Balta Mică a Brăilei site factsheet
Romania Băneasa - Canaraua Fetei site factsheet
Romania Barcă river flood-plain site factsheet
Romania Bârnova woodland site factsheet
Romania Beştepe - Mahmudia site factsheet
Romania Braţul Borcea site factsheet
Romania Câmpia Cermeiului site factsheet
Romania Câmpia Crişurilor site factsheet
Romania Câmpia Nirului - Valea lerului site factsheet
Romania Comana site factsheet
Romania Danube Delta site factsheet
Romania Denis Tepe site factsheet
Romania Dobrogei gorge site factsheet
Romania Dunăre - Canarale - Hârşova site factsheet
Romania Dunăre - Ostroave site factsheet
Romania Dunărea Veche (Braţul Măcin) site factsheet
Romania Hagieni forest site factsheet
Romania Horga - Zorleni site factsheet
Romania Hunedoara Timişană site factsheet
Romania Ilfov reservoir site factsheet
Romania Jijiei şi Miletinului fish-ponds site factsheet
Romania Kogălniceanu - Gura Ialomiţei site factsheet
Romania Lake Beibugeac (Plopu) site factsheet
Romania Lake Brateş site factsheet
Romania Lake Siutghiol site factsheet
Romania Lake Taşaul site factsheet
Romania Mândra wetlands site factsheet
Romania Miheşu de Câmpie-Taureni fish-ponds site factsheet
Romania Prut river flood-plain - Vlădeşti - Frumuşiţa site factsheet
Romania Radomir wood site factsheet
Romania Satchinez marsh site factsheet
Romania Stepa Casimcea site factsheet
Romania Stepa Saraiu - Horea site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Baturino-Simansky area site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Bol'shiye and Maliye Donki lakes site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Chernoye Lake site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Kazanskaya flood-plain of river Ishim site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Kurumbel'skaya steppe site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Pershinsko-Manatkinsky area site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Sibirskaya anabranch (Irtysh flood-plain) site factsheet
Russia (Central Asian) Sources of the rivers Big Karaganka and Syntasty site factsheet
Russia (European) Buninski forest site factsheet
Russia (European) Floodplain of Ilek river near Pokrovka site factsheet
Russia (European) Irgaklinski forest site factsheet
Russia (European) Karanogaiskiye steppes site factsheet
Russia (European) Leninsk forest area site factsheet
Russia (European) Lysyi Liman lake and valley of Vostochniy Manych river site factsheet
Russia (European) Severo-donetskaya site factsheet
Russia (European) Sources of Akshibai river site factsheet
Russia (European) Taman' site factsheet
Russia (European) Vicinity of Borisoglebovka (Saratovski [Semenovski] Reserve) site factsheet
Serbia Pašnjaci Velike Droplje site factsheet
Serbia Subotica lakes and sandy terrain site factsheet
Slovakia Dolné Považie site factsheet
Slovakia Lehnice site factsheet
Slovakia Miloslavov site factsheet
Slovakia Ostrovne luky site factsheet
Slovakia Puste Ulany-Zelenec site factsheet
Slovakia Syslovské fields site factsheet
Slovenia Lake Cerknica site factsheet
Slovenia Ljubljansko moor site factsheet
Ukraine Agricultural lands near Bilorets'ke (Chornozemne village) site factsheet
Ukraine Berezans'kyj lyman and Solonets Tuzly pond site factsheet
Ukraine Carpathian Vulkanichnyj Mountains site factsheet
Ukraine Chauda site factsheet
Ukraine Gajchur river valley site factsheet
Ukraine Kakhovs'ke reservoir (Knyazhe-Grigorivka village) site factsheet
Ukraine Kakhovs'ke reservoir (Vasylivka village) site factsheet
Ukraine Konka river mouth site factsheet
Ukraine Kremenets'kyj forest site factsheet
Ukraine Mokri Yasli forestry plantation site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Pastureland suitable breeding
Forest Boreal suitable breeding
Forest Temperate suitable breeding
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable non-breeding
Grassland Temperate suitable breeding
Savanna Dry suitable non-breeding
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands suitable breeding
Altitude 0 - 1500 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact

Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals / Unintentional effects (species is not the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Unlikely to Return Minority (<50%) Slow, Significant Decline Past Impact
Ecosystem degradation
Pollution Agricultural & forestry effluents / Herbicides and pesticides Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Majority (50-90%) Slow, Significant Decline Medium Impact:
Ecosystem degradation


Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets Whole Adults and juveniles Wild International Non-trivial Recent
Sport Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Falco vespertinus. Downloaded from on 20/04/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 20/04/2014.

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.

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 Near Threatened
Family Falconidae (Falcons and caracaras)
Species name author Linnaeus, 1766
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 10,700,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species