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(Redirected from Hen Harrier)
Alternative name: Hen Harrier
L. 17-24 in
 Similar species
See Montagu's Harrier and Pallid Harrier which both show four noticeable primaries in flight. Also see other harriers depending on where the observation is done; in Europe, Western Marsh-Harrier is heavier with broader wings.
Widespread in the Northern Hemisphere.
In North America breeds over most of Alaska except the far north and Canada south of the tree-line. Also breeds over much of the western and northern USA but absent from the south and south-east. Southernmost breeding limit is northern Baja California.
In Europe main breeding range is from central Sweden, Finland and the Baltic States, south to the Black Sea and east to the Urals. However, also breeds patchily in Ireland and northern Britain, in north and central France and northern Spain, with smaller populations in the Netherlands, Denmark and central Norway, Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic. Recently bred for the first time for many years in Italy. A summer visitor to Scandinavia and Russia but resident or partly so in remainder of range.
Widespread in winter from British Isles, France and Spain east to the Black and Caspian Seas. Small numbers winter in Morocco and Egypt and can be seen on the major migration routes but relatively few cross the Mediterranean. Recorded in some numbers at Falsterbo, peaking in early-mid October.
The North American race hudsonius formerly known as the Marsh Hawk has rufous-spotted flanks and thighs in male and darker upperparts and more orange underparts in female. This race has occurred as a 'vagrant to the Azores and the Faroes and possibly also in Britain.
Breeds in marshes, grasslands and heathlands, sometimes in mountains, often in cultivated areas.
Harriers hunt using a low, slow flight over the ground, with their wings held in a shallow "V", then plunge onto their prey.
Includes small mammals, birds, reptiles, insects, and carrion.
They build a nest of sticks and grass on the ground in thick heather, grass or shrubs. The clutch consists of three to six eggs which are incubated by the female for 29 - 31 days, fledging after about a month later.
They take 2 - 3 years to mature, but may attempt breeding in their first year.
Call: kek, kek, kek
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