Eastern Marsh Harrier

Scientific Name: Circus spilonotus
Malay Name: Helang-Sawah Biasa
Chinese Name: 白腹鹞

Found from eastern Siberia, north-eastern China to northern Japan and winters to the Indian subcontinent, southern China, southern Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia


Size: 48-56 cm

Male resembles Pied Harrier but has black streaks on neck and breast and lacks large white patches on upperwing-coverts. Female resembles Pied Harrier but has dull rufous belly and thigh. Juvenile also resembles Pied Harrier but has darker brown body and pale head.

Similar looking species: Pied Harrier

Habitat: Open country, reclaimed land, grasslands and marshes.

Behaviour/Ecology: Usually flies low over open country with short flaps interspersed by long glides.

Local Status: Uncommon migrant

Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2016)

Location: Recent sightings were at Changi reclaimed land, Tanah Merah grassland, Kranji Marsh and Henderson Waves Bridge.


External Links:
Conservation Status: IUCN Red List Page
Photos: Oriental Bird Images
Sound Recordings: xeno-canto Link
Wikipedia Entry: Wikipedia Link

BirdLife International. (2016). Circus spilonotus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016. Downloaded on 2 September 2021
Jeyarajasingam, A., & Pearson, A. (2012). A Field Guide to the Birds of Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore. Oxford University Press.
Robson, C. (2008). A Field Guide to the Birds of South-East Asia. New Holland Publishers.