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Falco peregrinus

warning Critically Endangered
CR (D1)

Contributed: Avner Rinot, Ohad Hatzofe, Yoav Perlman, Itay Shimshon
Update Time: Jan. 1, 2011, 7:39 a.m.

The Peregrine Falcon is classified as Critically Endangered (CR) because of its extremely small breeding population, estimated at less than 50 mature individuals. In the previous edition of the Red Book (2002), it was classified as Regionally Extinct (RE). The improvement in the species status reflects its return to breed in Israel during recent years, although nesting observations are still sporadic and discontinuous and there is no information regarding breeding success. According to certain taxonomic sources (including BirdLife International) the Barbary Falcon F. pelegrinoides is now considered a subspecies of the Peregrine. However, due to the considerable differences in the characteristics of both these populations and their conservation status, they are treated here as two separate species (see Barbary Falcon, EN).
CR Current Regional Assessment | RE Previous Regional Assessment | LC Global Assessment

Habitats Mediterranean Cliffs
Presence In Israel Summer
Breeding In Israel Breeder
Migration Types Short Range / Partial
Zoographical Zones Mediterranean
Landscape Types Mountainous, Urban
Vegetation Types Forest, Mediterranean Maquis, Mediterranean Garrigue
Vegetation Densities Medium, High
Nest Locations Cliffs, Buildings
Diet Types Terrestrial Vertebrates
Foraging Grounds Aerial
Body Sizes Medium (500 - 1000g)
Threat Factors Pesticide Poisoning

The Peregrine Falcon is a large, fast, aggressive falcon that feeds on birds it catches in flight. It nests on mountains and cliffs, as well as on tall buildings in cities. It winters in cities and open spaces with trees and electric poles that can serve as perches.

A number of pairs of the Mediterranean subspecies F. p. brookei nested in the Galilee, the Carmel and the Judean Mountains until the 1950s. These pairs were apparently harmed by agricultural pesticides (Paz 1986, Shirihai 1996). In recent years, a number of nesting attempts were made in Tel-Aviv, Haifa and the Hadera Power Plant, some of which apparently succeeded. A nestling at the fledging stage was collected at Haifa University in spring 2013, evidence of nesting that apparently occurred there on one of the buildings (Yigael Miller, pers. comm.).

The Peregrine Falcon has a broad cosmopolitan range. The closest breeding populations are found in Cyprus, Turkey and Greece.

No specific conservation measures have been taken for this species to date.

In recent years, a number of breeding attempts by Peregrine Falcons have been observed in Israel, consequently the species is no longer considered extinct. On the other hand, in order to ensure its future in Israel it is necessary to reduce the use of pesticides in agriculture and stop the use of lead shot for hunting.

The Peregrine Falcon feeds on game birds, such as pigeons and partridges. These birds could have remains of lead shot in their bodies and cause lead poisoning in the falcons. In order to conserve the Peregrine Falcons, as well as all other birds of prey, the use of lead shot for hunting should be stopped.

  • הצופה, א. ומירוז, א. 2015. תכנית אב לשימור העופות הדורסים בישראל. מסמך פנימי של רשות הטבע והגנים.
  • פז, ע. 1986. עופות. מתוך אלון, ע. (עורך), החי והצומח של ארץ ישראל. כרך 6. הוצאת משרד הביטחון, ישראל.
Contributed: Avner Rinot, Ohad Hatzofe, Yoav Perlman, Itay Shimshon

Current Occupancy Map

Current occupancy map by density
Data Missing Sporadic Limited Sites Low Density High Density
0 0 0 0 0

Distribution maps

The maps presented here provide visual information on the distribution of species in Israel from the past and present, and the changes in occupancy and breeding density during the comparison period. For further reading

Relative Abundance 2010-2020

Breeding density values in the current decade as determined from experts' opinion and observations from databases.

Relative Abundance 2010-2020 by density
Data Missing Sporadic Limited Sites Low Density High Density
8 12 12 21 19

Relative Abundance 1980-1990

Density values based primarily on the book The Birds of Israel (Shirihai 1996).

Relative Abundance 1980-1990 by density
Data Missing Sporadic Limited Sites Low Density High Density
5 14 14 17 22

Occupancy 1990-2020

The map shows differences in the species breeding distribution between the 1980's breeding map and the current weighted breeding evaluation. Negative value - species previously bred in the grid and is not presently breeding; positive value - species has not previously bred in the grid and is currently breeding.

Occupancy 1990-2020
Data Missing No Change Occupancy Increase Occupancy Decrease
6 35 1 9

Change in Relative Abundance 1990-2020

The map shows the changes in the relative abundance of a species in each of the distribution grids between the breeding map of the 1980s and the weighted current breeding evaluation. Negative values - decline in abundance; positive values - increase in abundance; zero - no change in abundance.

Change in Relative Abundance 1990-2020
80 to 100 50 20 to 30 No Change 30- to 20- 50- 100- to 80- Data Missing
0 4 2 22 12 14 11 16

Red number
IUCN category
Threat Definition according to the red book
() districts
% of protected sites

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