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LC
Eurasian Hobby Falco subbuteo

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). Despite the fact that the population trend appears to be decreasing, the decline is not believed to be sufficiently rapid to approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population trend criterion (>30% decline over 10 years or three generations). The population size is very large, and hence does not approach the thresholds for Vulnerable under the population size criterion (<10,000 mature individuals with a continuing decline estimated to be >10% in 10 years or three generations, or with a specified population structure). For these reasons the species is evaluated as Least Concern.

Taxonomic source(s)
AERC TAC. 2003. AERC TAC Checklist of bird taxa occurring in Western Palearctic region, 15th Draft. Available at: #http://www.aerc.eu/DOCS/Bird_taxa_of _the_WP15.xls#.
Cramp, S.; Perrins, C. M. 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
del Hoyo, J.; Collar, N. J.; Christie, D. A.; Elliott, A.; Fishpool, L. D. C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International.

Population justification
The global population is estimated to number > c.400,000 individuals (Ferguson-Lees et al. 2001), while national population estimates include: c.100-10,000 breeding pairs, c.50-1,000 individuals on migration and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in China; < c.100,000 breeding pairs and < c.1,000 individuals on migration in Korea; c.100-10,000 breeding pairs and c.50-1,000 individuals on migration in Japan and c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration in Russia (Brazil 2009).

Trend justification
The population is declining locally owing to habitat loss (del Hoyo et al. 1994).

Ecology
Behaviour Most individuals of the species are migratory, with western birds wintering in Africa and others in southern Asia (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Birds leave their breeding grounds between August and October, arriving at wintering quarters from late October onwards. The return journey begins in March and April, and breeding territories are occupied again in May and June.  Birds are usually seen singly or in pairs or family groups, even on migration, with larger groups being rare except at roosts and especially rich feeding sites (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). It migrates in broad fronts and does not generally concentrate at narrow sea crossings as do many other migratory raptors (del Hoyo et al. 1994, Snow and Perrins 1998). It is mainly diurnal although partly crepuscular and even nocturnal to some extent on migration (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). Habitat It occurs in open wooded areas, and has been recorded up to 4,000 m (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Diet Flying insects form the main part of its diet, although birds are often taken in the breeding season (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Breeding site Birds almost always nest in trees, using abandoned nests of other raptors or corvids (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Management information The species requires trees in which to nest, so although preferring generally open areas in the breeding season it will avoid those that are completely deforested (del Hoyo et al. 1994).

Threats

The cutting of old growth forest patches in Ukraine is thought to have caused local declines (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Some are shot, notably in Malta where hunters are thought to kill 500-1,000 individuals each year. A growing threat is human disturbance, which facilitates nest predation by crows and squirrels. Pesticide use has likely had only minor impacts, as has egg-collecting, which tends to be a local issue (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). The species is highly vulnerable to the effects of potential wind energy development (Strix 2012).

References
Brazil, M. 2009. Birds of East Asia: eastern China, Taiwan, Korea, Japan, eastern Russia. Christopher Helm, London.

Croxton, P. J.; Sparks, T. H.; Cade, M.; Loxton, R. G. 2006. Trends and temperature effects in the arrival of spring migrants in Portland (United Kingdom) 1959-2005. Acta Ornithologica 41: 103-111.

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.

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

Sparks, T. H.; Huber, K.; Bland, R. L.; Crick, H. Q. P.; Croxton, P. J.; Flood, J.; Loxton, R. G.; Mason, C. F.; Newnham, J.A.; Tryjanowski, P. 2007. How consistent are trends in arrival (and departure) dates of migrant birds in the UK? Journal of Ornithology 148: 503-511.

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)

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

Explore HBW Alive for further information on this species

View photos and videos and hear sounds of this species from the Internet Bird Collection

Text account compilers
Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Khwaja, N.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Falco subbuteo. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/07/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 29/07/2014.

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.

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.

Additional resources for this species

ARKive species - Eurasian hobby (Falco subbuteo) 0

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Falconidae (Falcons, Caracaras)
Species name author Linnaeus, 1758
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 29,200,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Additional Information on this species