Birds of Switzerland
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    Western Marsh Harrier

    Circus aeruginosus

    Information

    The light flapping and gliding hunting flight with wings raised in V-shape are typical for the Western Marsh Harrier. While executing many loops, it patrols low over reeds and silted-up areas as well as wasteland and extensively managed agricultural areas searching for prey, surprising it on the ground by cleverly using all structures of terrain and vegetation as a cover.

    Voice

    Status (in CH)
    extremely rare breeder, regular, scarce migrant and rare winter visitor
    Annual cycle
    The bar on the top line indicates during which seasons the species can be observed regularly in Switzerland. There can be great seasonal fluctuations of numbers. The middle bar indicates the typical migration seasons of a species. The bottom bar indicates the period during which the species normally breeds. As a rule it spans the period from egg-laying to fledging of the young.
    Annual cycle
    Annual cycle

    Facts

    Population size in Switzerland (Pairs)
    0 (2011-2015)
    Migration behaviour
    predominantly long-distance migrant
    Diurnal/nocturnal migrant
    Diurnal migrant
    Length (cm)
    48-56
    wing span (cm)
    115-140
    Weight (g)
    400-800
    Nest site
    ground
    Food
    amphibians, birds, small mammals
    Group
    Hawks, Vultures and Eagles
    Habitat
    wetlands, lakes, farmland
    Distribution
    Distribution
    Distribution