Family Falcons, Caracaras (Falconidae)

Least Concern

Lanner Falcon (Falco biarmicus)


French: Faucon lanier German: Lannerfalke Spanish: Halcón borní
Other common names: Lanner

Falco biarmicus


, 1825,

Cape of Good Hope, South Africa


Closest to F. jugger, with which sometimes treated as conspecific; genetic data indicate that these two, along with F. cherrug and F. rusticolus, form a group of closely related species#R. Five subspecies recognized.

Subspecies and Distribution
  • F. b. feldeggii Schlegel, 1843 – S Italy and Sicily E to Azerbaijan, then S to Lebanon.
  • F. b. erlangeri O. Kleinschmidt, 1901 – NW Africa from Mauritania to Morocco and Tunisia.
  • F. b. tanypterus Schlegel, 1843 – NE Africa, including Libya, Egypt and N Sudan, E to Israel, Jordan and Arabia.
  • F. b. abyssinicus Neumann, 1904 – Senegal E to Ethiopia, Eritrea and Somalia, and S to Uganda and N DRCongo.
  • F. b. biarmicus Temminck, 1825 – Angola, S DRCongo and Kenya S to South Africa.
  • Descriptive notes

    39–48 cm; male 430–600 g, female c. 700–900 g; wingspan 88–113 cm. Fairly large falcon with bluish-grey or brownish-grey upperparts and pale... read more


    During breeding season utters mostly harsh cackling notes and screaming sounds, e.g. “schreeeee”, “... read more


    Highly variable, from dry, flat, open desert to wet, often forested mountains up to 5000 m... read more

    Food and feeding

    Mainly small birds, especially quails and columbids, augmented by rodents (Arvicanthus rats in Ethiopia), bats, lizards (... read more


    Rarely polyandrous. Lays Feb–May in S Europe and N Africa; Jan–Mar in Sahara, W & NE Africa, coinciding with northward... read more


    Resident in areas of more stable climate; local N–S migrant in W Africa; extensive movements... read more

    Status and conservation

    Not globally threatened (Least Concern). CITES II. Widespread and generally common in Africa, even in populated areas. In Transvaal of South Africa, estimated total... read more

    Recommended citation

    Kemp, A.C. & Marks, J.S. (2020). Lanner Falcon (Falco biarmicus). In: del Hoyo, J., Elliott, A., Sargatal, J., Christie, D.A. & de Juana, E. (eds.). Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive. Lynx Edicions, Barcelona. (retrieved from on 27 January 2020).