Grey-faced Buzzard

Scientific Name: Butastur indicus

Malay Name: Helang-Rintik Utara

Chinese Name: 灰脸鵟鹰

Range: Found from eastern Siberia, north-eastern China, Japan to Korea and winters to Southeast Asia

Taxonomy: Monotypic.

Size: 41-49 cm

Identification: Adult has mostly plain greyish-brown upperparts and upperbreast, whitish throat with distinctive black mesial stripes, greyish-brown rest of underparts with whitish barrings, pale underwing with dark wing-tips and three dark tail-bands. Juvenile has browner upperparts, broad whitish supercilium and dull whitish underparts with bold dark streaks.

Similar looking species: Shikra

Habitat: Open country, lightly wooded areas and reclaimed land


Local Status: Uncommon migrant

Conservation Status: Least Concern (BirdLife International 2021)

Location: Changi reclaimed land, Tanah Merah grassland, Tuas, Pulau Ubin, Henderson Wave, Kent Ridge Park and Sisters’ Islands.

Migrant bar chart (see more bar charts):

Grey-faced Buzzard Butastur indicus
Estimated average number of individuals by week based on eBird data, Jul 2013 to Jun 2023
Peak week Oct 29-Nov 04
Early date 18 Oct 2004
Late date 08 Apr 2001
Used to be considered rare, but recently realized to be rather common at the end of Oct and in early Nov, and in early March to a lesser extent.


BirdLife International. (2021). Butastur indicus. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2021. Accessed on 1 January 2023

Jeyarajasingam, A., & Pearson, A. (2012). A Field Guide to the Birds of Peninsular Malaysia and Singapore. Oxford University Press.

Lim, K. S. (2009). The Avifauna of Singapore. Nature Society (Singapore).

Robson, C. (2014). Field guide to the birds of South-East Asia (Second Edition). Bloomsbury Publishing, London.

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