Falco vespertinus Linnaeus, 1766 ♀
Common names: Red-footed Falcon [En], Faucon kobez [Fr], Roodpootvalk [Nl], Rotfussfalke [De], Falco cuculo [It], Cernícalo patirrojo [Es], Ala doğan [Tr]
IUCN Status: Near Threatened [NT]
Alyki Kitrous, THESSALONIKI ● Greece
Description: It is a medium-small, long-winged species. The adult male is all blue-grey, except for his red undertail and legs; its underwings are uniformly grey. The female has a grey back and wings, orange head and underparts, and a white face with black eye stripe and moustaches.
Young birds are brown above and buff below with dark streaks, and a face pattern like the female. Red-footed Falcons are 28-34 centimetres (11-13½ in) in length with a wingspan of 65-75 centimetres (25½-29½ in).
Biology : This is a diurnal bird of open country with some trees, often near water. Its distinctive method of hunting is shared by the Common Kestrel. It regularly hovers, searching the ground below, then makes a short steep dive towards the target. The Red-footed Falcon's main prey is large insects, but it will also take small mammals and birds.
This falcon is a colonial breeder, reusing the old nests of corvids, such as Rooks. It lays two to four eggs.
Three to four eggs are normally laid, at intervals of two days, which are then incubated by both parents for 27 to 28 days. The chicks fledge 27 to 30 days after hatching and gain complete independence around one week later.
Habitat: In their Eurasian breeding range, red-footed falcons inhabit open habitats with some tree cover. This includes steppe, wooded steppe, cultivation and pastures, normally in lowland, although up to 1,500 metres in Asia. In Africa, red-footed falcons can be found in grassland, savanna and scrubland.
Distribution: The red-footed falcon breeds in eastern Europe and west, central and north-central Asia, from Estonia and Hungary to extreme north-western China. It spends winter in south-west Africa, from Angola, Namibia and north South Africa, through Botswana to Zimbabwe and Zambia.
Wikipedia, Red-footed Falcon
Arkive, Red-footed Falcon
IUCN Red List