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European Bee-eater Merops apiaster

IUCN Red List history

Year Category
2014 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern

Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency Low
Land mass type   Average mass 56.5999984741211 g

Distribution

  Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 11,000,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 2,600,000 medium
Number of locations -
Fragmentation -

Population & trend

  Estimate Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor Estimated 2009
Population trend Stable -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 6.5 - - -
Population justification: In Europe, the breeding population is estimated to number 480,000-1,000,000 breeding pairs, equating to 1440,000-3,000,000 individuals (BirdLife International 2004). Europe forms 25-49% of the global range, so a very preliminary estimate of the global population size is 2,940,000-12,000,000 individuals, although further validation of this estimate is needed.
Trend justification: Declines may be occurring in parts of the range owing to loss of suitable prey due to widespread application of pesticides, loss of nesting sites through canalisation of rivers, increasing agricultural efficiency and establishment of monocultures, development of wilderness areas and shooting for sport, for food and because it is considered a crop pest (del Hoyo et al. 2001). However, in Europe the overall trend from 1980-2011 was stable, based on provisional data for 27 countries from the Pan-European Common Bird Monitoring Scheme (EBCC/RSPB/BirdLife/Statistics Netherlands).

Country/Territory distribution

Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Breeding Non-breeding Passage Resident
Afghanistan Native Extant Yes      
Albania Native Extant Yes      
Algeria Native Extant        
Angola Native Extant        
Armenia Native Extant Yes      
Austria Native Extant Yes      
Azerbaijan Native Extant Yes      
Bahrain Native Extant     Yes  
Belarus Native Extant Yes      
Belgium Native Extant Yes      
Benin Native Extant        
Bosnia and Herzegovina Native Extant Yes      
Botswana Native Extant        
Bulgaria Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Burkina Faso Native Extant        
Burundi Native Extant        
Cameroon Native Extant        
Cape Verde Vagrant Extant        
Central African Republic Native Extant        
Chad Native Extant        
China (mainland) Native Extant Yes      
Congo Native Extant        
Congo, The Democratic Republic of the Native Extant        
Côte d'Ivoire Native Extant        
Croatia Native Extant Yes      
Cyprus Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Czech Republic Native Extant Yes      
Denmark Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Djibouti Native Extant        
Egypt Native Extant        
Eritrea Native Extant        
Estonia Vagrant Extant        
Ethiopia Native Extant        
Finland Native Extant Yes      
France Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Gabon Native Extant        
Gambia Native Extant        
Georgia Native Extant Yes      
Germany Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Ghana Native Extant        
Gibraltar (to UK) Native Extant     Yes  
Greece Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Guinea Native Extant        
Guinea-Bissau Native Extant        
Hungary Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Iceland Vagrant Extant        
India Native Extant Yes      
Iran, Islamic Republic of Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Iraq Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Ireland Vagrant Extant        
Israel Native Extant Yes      
Italy Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Jordan Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Kazakhstan Native Extant Yes      
Kenya Native Extant        
Kuwait Native Extant     Yes  
Kyrgyzstan Native Extant Yes      
Latvia Native Extant Yes      
Lebanon Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Lesotho Native Extant        
Liberia Native Extant        
Libya Native Extant        
Liechtenstein Vagrant Extant        
Luxembourg Vagrant Extant        
Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of Native Extant Yes      
Madagascar Vagrant Extant        
Malawi Native Extant        
Maldives Vagrant Extant        
Mali Native Extant        
Mauritania Native Extant        
Moldova Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Montenegro Native Extant Yes      
Morocco Native Extant        
Mozambique Native Extant        
Namibia Native Extant        
Netherlands Native Extant Yes      
Niger Vagrant Extant        
Nigeria Native Extant        
Norway Vagrant Extant        
Oman Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Pakistan Native Extant Yes      
Palestinian Authority Territories Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Poland Native Extant Yes      
Portugal Native Extant Yes      
Qatar Native Extant     Yes  
Romania Native Extant Yes      
Russia Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Russia (Central Asian) Native Extant Yes      
Russia (European) Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Rwanda Native Extant        
Saudi Arabia Native Extant     Yes  
Senegal Native Extant        
Serbia Native Extant Yes      
Seychelles Vagrant Extant        
Sierra Leone Native Extant        
Slovakia Native Extant Yes      
Slovenia Native Extant Yes      
Somalia Native Extant        
South Africa Native Extant        
South Sudan Native Extant     Yes  
Spain Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Sri Lanka Native Extant   Yes    
Sudan Native Extant        
Swaziland Native Extant        
Sweden Native Extant Yes      
Switzerland Native Extant Yes      
Syria Native Extant Yes   Yes  
Tajikistan Native Extant Yes      
Tanzania Native Extant        
Togo Native Extant        
Tunisia Native Extant        
Turkey Native Extant Yes      
Turkmenistan Native Extant Yes      
Uganda Native Extant        
Ukraine Native Extant Yes   Yes  
United Arab Emirates Native Extant Yes   Yes  
United Kingdom Native Extant Yes      
Uzbekistan Native Extant Yes      
Western Sahara Native Extant        
Yemen Native Extant     Yes  
Zambia Native Extant        
Zimbabwe Native Extant        

Important Bird Areas where this species has triggered the IBA criteria

Country/Territory IBA Name IBA link
Armenia Khosrov Reserve site factsheet
Austria Lösslandschaft and Wagram east of Krems site factsheet
Bulgaria Adata-Tundzha site factsheet
Bulgaria Ludogorie site factsheet
Bulgaria Nikopolsko Plateau site factsheet
Bulgaria Stenata site factsheet
Bulgaria Zlatiata site factsheet
France Basse Vallée du Doubs : Dole Sud site factsheet
France Etangs de Canet et de Villeneuve-de-la-Raho et embouchure du Tech site factsheet
France Hautes garrigues du Montpellierais site factsheet
France Ile de la Platière site factsheet
France Plaine des Maures site factsheet
France Vallée du Régino site factsheet
Greece Evros delta site factsheet
Greece Lake Mitrikou (Ismarida) site factsheet
Greece Mounts Kato Olympos and Ossa, and Tembi ravine site factsheet
Greece Nestos gorge site factsheet
Greece Porto Lagos, Lake Vistonis, and coastal lagoons (Lakes of Thrace) site factsheet
Italy Litorale Romano site factsheet
Russia (European) Bryansko-Zhizdrinskoye woodland site factsheet
Serbia Carska bara site factsheet
Serbia Danube loess bluffs site factsheet
Serbia Jegricka site factsheet
Serbia Mala vrbica site factsheet
Serbia Subotica lakes and sandy terrain site factsheet
Spain Bajo Alcanadre-Serreta de Tramaced site factsheet
Spain Ceuta site factsheet
Spain Cinca river rice fields and steppe area site factsheet
Spain Cogul-Alfés steppes site factsheet
Spain Córdoba countryside site factsheet
Spain Cortados del Jarama site factsheet
Spain Enguera mountain range-La Canal de Navarrés site factsheet
Spain La Safor and North Alicante mountain ranges site factsheet
Spain Lerida steppes site factsheet
Spain Marina mountain ranges site factsheet
Spain Mountains of Barcelona site factsheet
Spain Rivers Cabriel and Júcar canyons site factsheet
Spain Turia canyon and Los Serranos site factsheet
Ukraine Agricultural lands near Bilorets'ke (Chornozemne village) site factsheet
Ukraine Berezans'kyj lyman and Solonets Tuzly pond site factsheet
Ukraine Gajchur river valley site factsheet
Ukraine Izyums'ka Luka forest site factsheet
Ukraine Kakhovs'ke reservoir (Energodar) site factsheet
Ukraine Kakhovs'ke reservoir (Kajiry village) site factsheet
Ukraine Kakhovs'ke reservoir (Vasylivka village) site factsheet
Ukraine Karachunivs'ke reservoir site factsheet
Ukraine Samars'kyj forest site factsheet
Ukraine Tsybul'kivs'ki lakes site factsheet
Ukraine Velyka Osokorovka site factsheet

Habitats & altitude

Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable non-breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Arable Land suitable breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Pastureland suitable non-breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Pastureland suitable breeding
Artificial/Terrestrial Plantations suitable breeding
Forest Temperate suitable breeding
Grassland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable breeding
Grassland Temperate suitable breeding
Savanna Dry suitable non-breeding
Shrubland Mediterranean-type Shrubby Vegetation suitable breeding
Shrubland Subtropical/Tropical Dry suitable breeding
Shrubland Temperate suitable breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Freshwater Lakes (over 8ha) suitable non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) suitable breeding
Altitude 0 - 2400 m Occasional altitudinal limits  

Utilisation

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Sport hunting/specimen collecting - - -  
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - -  
Food - human - - -  

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2014) Species factsheet: Merops apiaster. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/10/2014. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2014) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 22/10/2014.

This information is based upon, and updates, the information published in BirdLife International (2000) Threatened birds of the world. Barcelona and Cambridge, UK: Lynx Edicions and BirdLife International, BirdLife International (2004) Threatened birds of the world 2004 CD-ROM and BirdLife International (2008) Threatened birds of the world 2008 CD-ROM. These sources provide the information for species accounts for the birds on the IUCN Red List.

To provide new information to update this factsheet or to correct any errors, please email BirdLife

To contribute to discussions on the evaluation of the IUCN Red List status of Globally Threatened Birds, please visit BirdLife's Globally Threatened Bird Forums.

Key facts
Current IUCN Red List category Least Concern
Family Meropidae (Bee-eaters)
Species name author Linnaeus, 1758
Population size mature individuals
Population trend Stable
Distribution size (breeding/resident) 11,000,000 km2
Country endemic? No
Links to further information
- Summary information on this species
- Projected distributions under climate change