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Harlequin Duck Histrionicus histrionicus

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 -


  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 3,170,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 3,170,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Increasing -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 7.9 - - -
Population justification: The global population is estimated to number c.190,000-380,000 individuals (Wetlands International 2006), while national population sizes have been estimated at <c.100 breeding pairs and c.50-10,000 wintering individuals in Japan and c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals in Russia (Brazil 2009).
Trend justification: The overall population trend is increasing, although some populations may be stable and others have unknown trends (Wetlands International 2006). This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant increase over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007).

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Austria Vagrant Extant      
Belgium Vagrant Extant      
Canada Native Extant     Yes
China (mainland) Native Extant      
Croatia Vagrant Extant      
Denmark Vagrant Extant      
France Vagrant Extant      
Germany Vagrant Extant      
Greenland (to Denmark) Native Extant      
Iceland Native Extant      
Italy Vagrant Extant      
Japan Native Extant      
Kazakhstan Vagrant Extant      
Mexico Native Extant      
Mongolia Vagrant Extant      
Montenegro Vagrant Extant      
Netherlands Vagrant Extant      
North Korea Native Extant      
Norway Vagrant Extant      
Poland Vagrant Extant      
Russia (Asian) Native Extant      
Serbia Vagrant Extant      
Slovakia Vagrant Extant   Yes  
South Korea Native Extant      
St Pierre and Miquelon (to France) Native Extant   Yes Yes
Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands (to Norway) Vagrant Extant      
Sweden Vagrant Extant      
Switzerland Vagrant Extant      
Ukraine Vagrant Extant      
United Kingdom Vagrant Extant      
USA Native Extant Yes    

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Canada Lambert Channel/Hornby Island Waters site factsheet
China (mainland) Longfeng Wetland Nature Reserve site factsheet
Greenland (to Denmark) Qilangaarsuit and adjacent islands site factsheet
Iceland Mývatn-Laxá site factsheet
Iceland Ósar site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Aniva bay site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Babushkina bay site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Karaginskiy island site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Lower Tumen river site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Nevskoye lake site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Shantar islands site factsheet
Russia (Asian) Tyk and Viakhtu bays site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline major non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) major breeding
Altitude 0 - 0 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact

Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Climate change & severe weather Habitat shifting & alteration Timing Scope Severity Impact
Future Whole (>90%) Unknown Unknown
Indirect ecosystem effects, Ecosystem degradation


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

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Histrionicus histrionicus. Downloaded from on 19/04/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 19/04/2014.

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 Anatidae (Ducks, geese and swans)
Species name author (Linnaeus, 1758)
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Increasing
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 3,170,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species