Living Organisms / Animalia / Craniata / Aves / Ciconiiformes / Accipitridae / Buteo / Species
Buteo lagopus - Rough-legged buzzard (Click photographs/illustrations: full picture & further details)

INFORMATION AVAILABLE

GENERAL & REFERENCES

EXTERNAL APPEARANCES

REPRODUCTION

BEHAVIOUR

NATURAL DIET

RANGE & HABITAT

CONSERVATION

.

Return to top of page

General and References

Alternative Names (Synonyms)

  • Ruigpootbuizerd (Dutch)
  • Buse pattue (French)
  • Raufußbussard (German)
  • Poiana calzata (Italian)
  • Busardo calzado (Spanish)
  • Fjällvråk (Swedish)

Names for newly-hatched

Chick

Names for non-breeding males or other colour-phases

--

Return to top of page

References

Species Author

Debra Bourne

Major References

B162, B163, B164, B165

Aviculture references:

ORGANISATIONS
(UK Contacts)

ELECTRONIC LIBRARY
(Further Reading)
Click image for full contents list of ELECTRONIC LIBRARY

Return to top of page

TAXA Group (where information has been collated for an entire group on a modular basis)

Parent Group

  • Birds of Prey

Specific Needs Group referenced in Management Techniques

  • Birds of Prey

Return to top of page

Aviculture Information

Notes

--
Individual Techniques linked in Wildpro

Return to top of page

External Appearance (Morphology)

Measurement & Weight

Length
  • 50-60cm (tail 18-23cm) (B162); 49-59cm (B164); 55cm (B165).
  • Wing span: 120-150cm (B162).
  • Female slightly larger than male (B162).
Adult weight General --
Male 700-1100g (B162).
Female 900-1600g (B162).
Newly-hatched weight --
Growth rate --

Return to top of page

Head

Adult Bill Male Black, with cere yellow (B164, B165).
Variations (If present) --
Eyes Male Yellow (B164).
Variations(If present) --
Juvenile Bill Black, with cere yellow (B164).
Eyes (Iris) Yellow (B164).

Return to top of page

Legs

Adult Male Feathered. Feet yellow with dark talons (B164, B165).
Variations (If present) --
Juvenile Feathered, feet yellow with dark talons (B164).

Return to top of page

Plumage

Adult Male
  • Head and neck: paler brown (B162).
  • Upperparts: dark.
  • Ventral: neck and upper breast brown, otherwise white, with abdomen patch barred dark (B164).
  • Wings: Upperside dark - brown, with primaries bases paler. Underside: white with carpal patches (primary coverts) dark, flight feathers whitish with dark tips: dark trailing edge and wing tips. Under wing-coverts mainly whitish in pale form, speckled brownish in dark form (B162, B165).
  • Tail: upperside base white, 3-4 or rarely 5 bars near tip, including terminal bar; underside terminal band dark, may also be other narrow bands (1-3 bands)(B162, B164).
Variations (If present) Female:
  • Abdomen dark patch prominent, usually darker than head and breast (B164).
  • Wing: underwing coverts usually paler than in males (B164).
  • Tail: upper usually 1-2 bands including terminal band, under distinct trailing band (B164).
Juvenile
  • Breast: streaked (B164).
  • Primaries: pale at base (B162, B164).
  • Tail: (upper surface) white except substantial terminal bar, lower surface diffuse darker edge (B164).

Return to top of page

Newly-hatched Characteristics

Semi-altricial (B163).

Return to top of page

Reproduction

Reproductive Season

Time of year Eggs laid late April/ early May (B162).
No. of Clutches One (B163).

Return to top of page

Nest placement and structure

  • On a rocky ledge, hillock or boulder, or steep slope.
  • Hillocks above meltwater level used in tundra.
  • Often use sites sheltered by an overhang.
  • Nests in tree occasionally if one is available.
  • Nest is a pile of small twigs and other available material.
  • Deep cup, lined with grass (up to 7cm thick on tundra), moss, green foliage.
  • Diameter average 60-90cm, height 50-60cm.
  • Re-use same nest in successive years.

(B162, B163, B164)

Return to top of page

Egg clutches

No. of Eggs Average 3-4 (B162, B163).
Range
  • 2-7 (B162, B163).
  • Variation depends on food supply: 5-7 in good lemming/vole years, 2-3 in poor years (B162, B163).
Egg colour Rounded oval, white usually with red-brown streaks/blotches. Not glossy. 55mm long (B162, B163).

Return to top of page

Incubation

28-31 days per egg (B162, B163).

Return to top of page

Hatching

Asynchronous (B163).

Return to top of page

Fledging

39-43 days (B162).

Return to top of page

Sexual Maturity

Males --
Females --

Return to top of page

Behaviour

Feeding Behaviour

Adults Flies over ground, hovers, and sometimes stoops from low perch, taking prey from land or occasionally from water (B162, B163).
Newly-hatched --

Return to top of page

Parental Behaviour

Nest-building By both parents (B163).
Incubation By female (B163).
Newly-hatched Tended by both parents (B163).
Juveniles

--

Return to top of page

Social Behaviour

Intra-specific
  • Territorial while breeding, otherwise mainly opportunistic and nomadic, but some with exclusive home-ranges.
  • Density depends on food availability.
  • Usually solitary or pairs.
  • Small groups and larger flocks on migration.
  • Winter sometimes in small flocks, may roost communally.

(B162)

Inter-specific --

Return to top of page

Sexual Behaviour

Monogamous; pair bond may continue during or be formed during winter (B162, B163).

Return to top of page

Predation in Wild

--

Return to top of page

Activity Patterns

  • Commonly perches on e.g. rocks, walls, crags, earth banks etc.
  • Sometimes perches on trees, posts.

(B162)

Circadian --

Return to top of page

Natural Diet

Adults

  • Small mammals (particularly voles, lemmings).
  • Also a few birds.

(B162, B163, B164)

Return to top of page

Newly-hatched

Older chicks may eat6 younger chicks if food scarce (B163).

Return to top of page

Range and Habitat

Distribution and Movement (Migration etc.)

Normal Western Palearctic Norway, Sweden, Finland eastwards into Russia and further east to extreme north Asia (further south along Pacific coast) and extreme north North America (B162).

Movement:

  • Migrates south for winter to Baltic (including southern Sweden) and about 55°N in Russia southwards (central Europe and Asia).

Britain: Rare winter visitor, mainly to east coast.

(B162, B163, B165)

Occasional and Accidental Spitsbergen, Iceland, Faeroes, Ireland, Switzerland, Spain, Balearic Islands, Malta, Greece, Cyprus, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Libya, Tunisia (B162).
Introduced

 

Return to top of page

Habitat

  • Open areas with rough low vegetation preferred.
  • Breeds in treeless areas e.g. low-lying tundra, also some upland areas.
  • Sometimes in boreal forests.

(B162, B163)

Return to top of page

Conservation

Intraspecific variation

--

Return to top of page

Conservation Status

Wild Population -
(Importance)

Fluctuations of population according to lemming and vole availability (B163).

General Legislation --
CITES listing --
Red-data book listing --
Threats --

Return to top of page

Captive Populations

--

Return to top of page

Trade

--

Return to top of page