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birds of prey


Overview of some of the larger birds of prey in Central Europe.  

Also note the migration times, so ospreys, honey buzzards, steppe and meadow harriers are not to be expected in winter, and the rough-legged buzzard will not usually spend the summer in Central Europe.

The hen harrier is a partial migrant, some of which migrate away, Nordic birds come to Central Europe to winter. 

Overwintering kites and marsh harriers have increased in recent years.

In the table are  Hibernate blue, migration times  green (with maximum in darker green) and stay in the breeding area in orange.  


Here the differences between the two types of Milan are illustrated again. 

Kites can also be distinguished by their calls. The black kite neighs/trills at the end of its call, the red kite does not.

The black kite can vary in the basic tone of the coloring and also appear clearly reddish, this is always the safest  Banding of the inner control feathers and the primaries.

Bussarde Fischadler.jpg

Again and again, light-colored buzzards are mistaken for rough-legged buzzards or ospreys. On closer inspection, however, they are easily distinguishable. 

In Central Europe, the rough-legged buzzard usually appears in October, occasionally earlier. Before that, a wave of young buzzards appear, which correspond to the bright youthful plumage and cause a lot of confusion. These usually have an evenly banded shock and a conspicuous "comma" on the wing bow. With these two characteristics, the rough-legged buzzard is eliminated. It is noticeable that the rough-legged buzzard often returns to the same wintering area and also uses the same perches.

Significantly larger and more slender than buzzards, the osprey is mostly found near bodies of water, but can also be seen migrating far away from them, but not resting.


Hawk and sparrowhawk are often one, even for practiced observation  A challenge, but often the beating of the wings can  be sufficient to secure  allow identification. The size is less useful because it is very subjective and the  perception  can also be affected by lighting conditions (a bird appears larger in front of a cloudy sky than in front of a blue one  Heaven, ...)

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