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Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus

July 29, 2021

Red-footed falcons (Falco vespertinus) are a small, long-distance and obligate migrant falcon that breeds at the forest-steppe interface in Eurasia and winters in Southern Africa. Research carried out with geolocators and satellite transmitters show that during the southbound migration Central Asian birds migrate through the Caucasus and the Middle East, while those from Eastern Europe cross the Eastern Mediterranean. Once in Africa, they cross the Sahara, the Sahel, where they perform short stopovers, and the Congo rainforest or the Rift valley, heading towards the wintering grounds. Northbound migration involves stopovers in West Africa and long crossings over the Mediterranean Sea. Both visual observations and tracking studies show that at least some populations of the species perform a clockwise loop migration that involves extensive longitudinal movements and. for some sub-populations, crossing the Central Mediterranean only during spring. Pre-breeding migration has a longer duration than post-breeding migration, probably because stopovers are longer and wind assistance lower. Red-footed falcons also face substantial anthropogenic threats along migration, particularly the risk of shooting at migratory bottlenecks.

Publication Year 2021
Title Red-footed Falcon Falco vespertinus
Authors Todd E. Katzner, Evgeny A. Bragin, Tricia A. Miller
Publication Type Book Chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Index ID 70229669
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Forest and Rangeland Ecosystem Science Center