Haliaeetus leucogaster


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Haliaeetus leucogaster
Species Authority: (Gmelin, 1788)
Common Name(s):
English White-bellied Sea-eagle, White-bellied Sea Eagle, White-bellied Fish-Eagle, White-bellied Sea-Eagle
Taxonomic Notes: Haliaeetus sanfordi (Sibley and Monroe 1990, 1993) is retained as a species contra Debus (2006), who proposed on the basis of molecular work, that sanfordi be treated as a subspecies of H. leucogaster. The BirdLife Taxonomic Working Group consider the considerable differences in morphology, size and proportion, as indicated by Ferguson-Lees and Christie (2001), argue in favour of retaining sanfordi as a full species.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2012
Date Assessed: 2012-05-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S. & Symes, A.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Harding, M., Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J.
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 ten years or three generations). The population size may be small, 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.

Geographic Range [top]

Australia; Bangladesh; Brunei Darussalam; Cambodia; China; Hong Kong; India; Indonesia; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Malaysia; Myanmar; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; Singapore; Sri Lanka; Thailand; Timor-Leste; Viet Nam
Christmas Island; Taiwan, Province of China
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The global population is estimated to number c.1,000-10,000 individuals (Ferguson-Lees et al. 2001), equivalent to c.670-6,700 mature individuals. The population in China has been estimated at c.100-10,000 breeding pairs (Brazil 2009).
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Systems: Terrestrial; Freshwater; Marine

Citation: BirdLife International 2012. Haliaeetus leucogaster. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 05 September 2015.
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