email a friend
printable version
Squacco Heron Ardeola ralloides

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
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 Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type   Average mass 287 g


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 18,600,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 18,600,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Decreasing -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 6.7 - - -
Trend justification: The overall population trend is decreasing, although some populations may be stable or increasing, and others have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2006).

Country/Territory distribution

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

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Armenia Metsamor site factsheet
Azerbaijan Lake Mahmudchala site factsheet
Azerbaijan Lake Sarysu site factsheet
Bosnia and Herzegovina Hutovo blato site factsheet
Botswana Okavango Delta site factsheet
Bulgaria Belene Islands Complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Ibisha Island site factsheet
Bulgaria Kalimok Complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Mandra-Poda complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Pozharevo Island site factsheet
Bulgaria Ropotamo Complex site factsheet
Bulgaria Srebarna site factsheet
Cameroon Logone flood-plain site factsheet
Chad Lake Chad site factsheet
Chad Lake Fitri site factsheet
Croatia Alluvial wetlands of the River Danube site factsheet
Croatia Alluvial wetlands of the River Drava site factsheet
Croatia Grudnjak fish-ponds site factsheet
Croatia Jelas field including fishponds and wet pastures along Sava RIver site factsheet
Croatia Nasicka Breznica fish-ponds site factsheet
Egypt Lake Manzala site factsheet
France Camargue site factsheet
France La Dombes site factsheet
France Marais entre Crau et Grand Rhône: Meyranne, Chanoine, Plan de Bourg et Salins du Caban site factsheet
France Petite Camargue fluvio-lacustre site factsheet
Greece Amvrakikos gulf site factsheet
Greece Axios, Loudias, and Aliakmon estuaries site factsheet
Greece Lake Kastoria (Orestiada) site factsheet
Greece Lake Kerkini site factsheet
Greece Lake Mikri Prespa and Lake Megali Prespa site factsheet
Greece Lake Mitrikou (Ismarida) site factsheet
Guinea-Bissau Arquipélago dos Bijagós site factsheet
Hungary Bodrogzug–Taktaköz site factsheet
Hungary Flood plain of Tiszaalpár site factsheet
Hungary Hortobágy and Tisza-to site factsheet
Hungary Kesznyéten site factsheet
Hungary Lake Kis-Balaton site factsheet
Hungary Lower Tisza Valley site factsheet
Hungary Péteri Lake site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Anzali Mordab complex site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Arjan Protected Area site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Lake Kobi site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Lavandavil Wildlife Refuge site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Miankaleh Peninsula and Gorgan Bay site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Seyed Mohalli, Zarin Kola and Larim Sara site factsheet
Iran, Islamic Republic of Shadegan marshes and tidal mudflats of Khor-al Amaya and Khor Musa site factsheet
Israel Carmel coast site factsheet
Mali Lac Débo - Lac Oualado Débo site factsheet
Montenegro Lake Skadar site factsheet
Portugal Paul do Boquilobo site factsheet
Romania Allah Bair - Capidava site factsheet
Romania Balta Mică a Brăilei site factsheet
Romania Balta Vederoasa site factsheet
Romania Bistreţ site factsheet
Romania Blahniţa site factsheet
Romania Braţul Borcea site factsheet
Romania Comana site factsheet
Romania Dăbuleni - Grinduri site factsheet
Romania Danube Delta site factsheet
Romania Dunăre - Olteniţa site factsheet
Romania Dunăre - Ostroave site factsheet
Romania Dunărea Veche (Braţul Măcin) site factsheet
Romania Gruia - Gârla Mare site factsheet
Romania Lake Beibugeac (Plopu) site factsheet
Romania Lake Bugeac site factsheet
Romania Lake Dunăreni site factsheet
Romania Lake Oltina site factsheet
Romania Olteniţa - Ulmeni site factsheet
Romania Ostrovu Lung - Gostinu site factsheet
Romania Vedea - Dunăre site factsheet
Russia (European) Chechen' Island and east seaside of Agrakhan peninsula site factsheet
Russia (European) Lake 'Southern Agrakhan' site factsheet
Russia (European) Shapsugsko-Takhtamutaiskaya rice-irrigation system site factsheet
Russia (European) Varnavinsko-Kryukovskaya irrigation system site factsheet
Russia (European) Volga Delta site factsheet
Serbia Becej fish-pond site factsheet
Serbia Carska bara site factsheet
Serbia Jegricka site factsheet
Serbia Labudovo Okno site factsheet
Serbia Subotica lakes and sandy terrain site factsheet
South Africa Nyl River Floodplain site factsheet
South Sudan Sudd (Bahr-el-Jebel system) site factsheet
Spain Albufera de Valencia marshes site factsheet
Spain Ebro delta site factsheet
Spain El Hondo wetland site factsheet
Spain Santa Pola salt-pans site factsheet
Spain Tablas de Daimiel marshes; 'Vicario' and 'Gasset' reservoirs and Malagón lakes site factsheet
Turkey Akşehir and Eber Lakes site factsheet
Turkey Ereğli Plain site factsheet
Turkey Göksu Delta site factsheet
Turkey Hotamış Marshes site factsheet
Turkey İron Marshes site factsheet
Turkey Işıklı Lake site factsheet
Turkey Köyceğiz Lake site factsheet
Turkey Manyas Lake (Kuş Lake) site factsheet
Turkey Marmara Lake site factsheet
Turkey Meriç Delta site factsheet
Turkey Mogan lake site factsheet
Turkey Sultan Marsh site factsheet
Turkey Uluabat Lake site factsheet
Turkey Yeşilırmak Delta site factsheet
Ukraine Dnipro delta site factsheet
Zambia Bangweulu Swamps site factsheet
Zambia Kafue Flats site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Neritic Estuaries suitable breeding
Marine Neritic Estuaries suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands suitable breeding
Wetlands (inland) Bogs, Marshes, Swamps, Fens, Peatlands suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha) major breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Marshes/Pools (under 8ha) major non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) major breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) major non-breeding
Altitude 0 - 2000 m Occasional altitudinal limits  


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
Handicrafts, jewellery, decorations, curios Whole Adults and juveniles Wild Subsistence, National Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Ardeola ralloides. Downloaded from on 23/04/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 23/04/2014.

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 Least Concern
Family Ardeidae (Herons and egrets)
Species name author (Scopoli, 1769)
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Decreasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 18,600,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species
- Climate change species distributions