Falco tinnunculus


Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family

Scientific Name: Falco tinnunculus
Species Authority: Linnaeus, 1758
Common Name(s):
English Common Kestrel, Kestrel, Eurasian Kestrel
French Faucon crécerelle

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2013-11-01
Assessor(s): BirdLife International
Reviewer(s): Butchart, S.
Facilitator/Compiler(s): Butchart, S., Ekstrom, J., Khwaja, N.
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 is extremely 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.
2012 Least Concern

Geographic Range [top]

Afghanistan; Albania; Algeria; Andorra; Angola (Angola); Armenia (Armenia); Austria; Azerbaijan; Bahrain; Bangladesh; Belarus; Belgium; Benin; Bhutan; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Botswana; Bulgaria; Burkina Faso; Burundi; Cambodia; Cameroon; Cape Verde; Central African Republic; Chad; China; Congo; Congo, The Democratic Republic of the; Côte d'Ivoire; Croatia; Cyprus; Czech Republic; Denmark; Djibouti; Egypt; Eritrea; Estonia; Ethiopia; Faroe Islands; Finland; France; Gabon; Gambia; Georgia; Germany; Ghana; Gibraltar; Greece; Guam; Guinea; Guinea-Bissau; Hong Kong; Hungary; India; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Ireland; Israel; Italy; Japan; Jordan; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Korea, Democratic People's Republic of; Korea, Republic of; Kuwait; Kyrgyzstan; Lao People's Democratic Republic; Latvia; Lebanon; Lesotho; Liberia; Libya; Liechtenstein; Lithuania; Luxembourg; Macao; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malawi; Malaysia; Maldives; Mali; Malta; Mauritania; Moldova; Mongolia; Montenegro; Morocco; Mozambique; Myanmar; Namibia; Nepal; Netherlands; Niger; Nigeria; Northern Mariana Islands; Norway; Oman; Pakistan; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Philippines; Poland; Portugal; Qatar; Romania; Russian Federation; Rwanda; Saudi Arabia; Senegal; Serbia (Serbia); Sierra Leone; Singapore; Slovakia; Slovenia; Somalia; South Africa; South Sudan; Spain (Canary Is.); Sri Lanka; Sudan; Swaziland; Sweden; Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Taiwan, Province of China; Tajikistan; Tanzania, United Republic of; Thailand; Togo; Tunisia; Turkey; Turkmenistan; Uganda; Ukraine; United Arab Emirates; United Kingdom; Uzbekistan; Viet Nam; Western Sahara; Yemen; Zambia; Zimbabwe
Bermuda; Brazil; Brunei Darussalam; Canada; French Guiana; Greenland; Iceland; Indonesia; Martinique; Svalbard and Jan Mayen; United States (Georgia - Native)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The global population is estimated to number > c.5,000,000 individuals (Ferguson-Lees et al. 2001), while national population estimates include: c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 individuals on migration in China; c.100-10,000 breeding pairs and c.50-1,000 individuals on migration in Korea; c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 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).
For further information about this species, see 22696362_falco_tinnunculus.pdf.
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Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Behaviour Populations in the northern part of the species’s range tend to be migrant, with others resident (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Migrant birds leave their breeding grounds between August and October, and those arriving in sub-Saharan Africa do so from October onwards (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). The return journey begins from February through until April (the exact time probably dependent on food availability), and is often undertaken in small mixed groups with F. naumanni and occasionally F. vespertinus (Brown et al. 1982, Snow and Perrins 1998, Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). The species can be solitary or gregarious, being most often seen singly but sometimes travelling in flocks of up to 10 individuals, especially on migration. Larger groups may congregate at sources of abundant food. It is mainly diurnal (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). Habitat The species tolerates a wide range of open and partially forested habitats, and has been recorded up to 4,500 m (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Diet It feeds mainly on small mammals, particularly in northern Europe, with insects possibly more important in Africa and the Mediterranean (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Breeding site The locations of nests are variable, with rock ledges, buildings and abandoned corvid nests being commonly reported sites (del Hoyo et al. 1994). Management information Birds require suitable perches and roosting sites, usually provided by trees, telegraph poles, buildings or rock faces (del Hoyo et al. 1994).
Systems: Terrestrial

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

Past population declines resulted from the heavy use of organochlorine and other pesticides in the 1950s-1960s (del Hoyo et al. 1994). In Malta, the species was exterminated by shooting, though it has since returned (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001). The population in much of the rest of Europe has shown a more recent steady decline, thought to be due to agricultural intensification (Snow and Perrins 1998). The species is vulnerable to the effects of potential wind energy development (Strix 2012).

Citation: BirdLife International 2013. Falco tinnunculus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2015.2. <>. Downloaded on 05 September 2015.
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