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Common Buzzard

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Common Buzzard (Buteo buteo)
A Common Buzzard at British Wildlife Centre, Surrey, England
A Common Buzzard in Scotland
Common Buzzard
The common buzzard is a medium sized raptor, most commonly found throughout Europe and Russia. Despite rapid declines in the UK's common buzzard population numbers a couple of hundred years ago, the common buzzard is now the most common bird of prey in Britain.

The common buzzard is found throughout Europe and Russia and also in parts of Asia and Northern Africa, where the common buzzard spends the cooler winter months. The common buzzard is found in a variety of habitats particularly woodland, moorland, scrub, pasture, arable, marsh bog, villages and even in towns and cities.

Like other medium to large sized birds of prey, the common buzzard is a generally solitary animal, hunting and feeding alone. However, it is not uncommon to see small groups of common buzzards flying together when migrating, with as many as 30 common buzzards being spotted at once.

The common buzzard is quite large with broad, rounded wings, and a short neck and tail and when gliding or soaring it will often hold its wings in a 'V' shape. Common buzzards are variable in colour from dark brown to tan, although all have dark wingtips and a finely barred tail. The call of the common buzzard resembles a mewing sound and can easily be mistaken for a cat.

The common buzzard is a large and opportunistic predator, surviving on a purely carnivorous diet. The common buzzard primarily preys on small mammals (such as rodents) and birds, along with a variety of other animals including insects, earthworms, snakes and carrion.

Due to the fact that the common buzzard is a fast and effective flyer, the common buzzard has few predators in the skies besides larger birds of prey such as eagles. On land however, the common buzzard is preyed upon by a number of ground-dwelling predators including wildcats and foxes.

Common buzzard pairs are known to mate for life and make their nest in plentiful habitats such as on the outskirts of forest or woodland. The female common buzzard lays 2 to 4 eggs which hatch after being incubated by her for about 1 month. The common buzzard chicks leave the nest (fledge) when they are about 45 days old, after being cared for by their parents (mainly the mother).

Despite once being nearly wiped out in the United Kingdom, today common buzzard populations are now thriving not only here but also across Europe, with the common buzzard being Europe's second most common raptor behind the common kestrel.

Common Buzzard Comments (1)

Mick Carroll

"We have several Buzzards residing just off the South Downs which regularly soar and circle above us making their unusual screeching. One has become very confident and most evenings will scour our front lawn for food. Coincidentally we have found unusual black feces which, upon close inspection, (not our hobby - but out of curiosity) contain beetles, bugs and other unusual items. We think this must be from our 'local' resident Buzzard. Has anyone got other ideas? Thanks, Mick. (Hooe, Sussex)"

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Common Buzzard Translations

Bulgarian български език
Обикновен мишелов
Catalan Català
Aligot comú
Czech Cesky
Káně lesní
Danish Dansk
German Deutsch
English English
Common Buzzard
Esperanto Esperanto
Spanish Español
Buteo buteo
French Français
Buse variable
Hebrew עִבְרִית
עקב חורף
Croatian Hrvatski
Obični škanjac
Italian Italiano
Dutch Nederlands
Japanese 日本語
Polish Polski
Myszołów zwyczajny
Portuguese Português
Slovenian Slovenščina
Finnish Suomi
Swedish Svenska
Turkish Türkçe
Bayağı şahin

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Common Buzzard Facts

Five groups that classify all living things...
A group of animals within the animal kingdom...
A group of animals within a pylum...
A group of animals within a class...
A group of animals within an order...
A group of animals within a family...
Scientific Name:
Comprised of the genus followed by the species...
Buteo Buteo
The animal group that the species belongs to...
What kind of foods the animal eats...
Size (L):
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is...
51cm - 57cm (20in - 22in)
Wing Span:
The measurement from one wing tip to the other...
110cm - 130cm (48in - 60in)
The measurement of how heavy the animal is...
400g - 1400g (15oz - 48oz)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal...
40km/h (25mph)
Life Span:
How long the animal lives for...
12 - 20 years
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable...
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct...
Least Concern
The colour of the animal's coat or markings...
White, Black, Grey, Brown
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal...
Favourite Food:Rabbit
The specific area where the animal lives...
Countryside and woodland
Average Clutch Size:
The average number of eggs laif at once...
Main Prey:
The food that the animal gains energy from...
Rabbit. Pheasant, Lizards
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal...
Fox, Eagle, Wildcats
Distinctive Features:
Characteristics unique to the animal...
Small head and curved beak

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