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Characteristic of Birds of Prey migration in the Kharkov region, Ukraine. – Raptors Conservation 36

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XLS (0,36 Mб) >>Supplementary files: Appendix 1, DB of registration of birds of prey

DOC (2,87 Mб) >>Supplementary files: Appendix 2, Additional graphs and diagrams

Full reference: Viter S.G. Characteristic of Birds of Prey migration in the Kharkov region, Ukraine. – Raptors Conservation. 2018. 36: 73–107. DOI: 10.19074/1814-8654-2018-36-73-107


This article describes the characteristic of the raptor’s (Accipitriformes, Falconiformes) migration through Eastern European plains. We studied issues of a species distribution, number of migrants including between years variations, biotopical preferences, altitude and directions of migration, species composition and strength of migratory groups, important migration, and resting areas, and main threats. Studies were carried out on the territory without “bottleneck” factors. Most species migrate through the Eastern European plain as a sole individual or in pairs, more rarely – in small groups of 2–5 birds. In adverse circumstances, raptors can aggregate in big numbers making flocks. The most numerous species on migration is Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo) – a dominant species: 41.8% of all birds of prey observed on migration are Common Buzzards. Subdominant species (from 7–8% to 15%) are Rough-legged Buzzard (Buteo lagopus), Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus), Honey Buzzard (Pernis apivorus) and Northern Hobby (Falco subbuteo). Other common species are Lesser Spotted Eagle (Aquila pomarina), Booted Eagle (Hieraaetus pennatus), and Marsh Harrier (Circus aeruginosus). The number of migrating individuals for most species can be characterized as stable with overall depression in 2013. In 2008–2010 we observed the growth of the number of migrating Honey Buzzards, in 2015 – Short-Toed Eagles (Circaetus gallicus) and Common Buzzards, and in 2016 – Ospreys (Pandion haliaetus). The main directions of migratory movements in autumn are south-east and south; Rough-legged Buzzards are often moving to the west. In spring birds of prey are flying north-east and north, and less often – north-west. Most of the transit birds of prey were observed at low and middle altitudes (up to 150 m). Eagles (Aquila genus) are distributed more evenly with a significant number of high altitude migrants (from 350 to 600 m and higher). From 2007 to 2016 we observed shifts to the earliest dates in autumn migration start and peak. The average shift was 10–14 days.


birds of prey, migration, biotope, direction of migration, species composition, number of migrating individuals


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