It is a large falcon, at 43?50 cm length with a wingspan of 95?105 cm. European lanner falcons (Falco biarmicus feldeggi, also called Feldegg's falcon) have slate grey or brown-grey upperparts; most African subspecies are a paler blue grey above. The breast is streaked in northern birds, resembling greyish saker falcons, but the lanner has a reddish back to the head. Sexes are similar, but the browner young birds resemble saker falcons even more. However, sakers have a lighter top of the head and less clear head-side patterns.

Habitat and Distribution

It breeds in Africa, southeast Europe and just into Asia. It is mainly resident, but some birds disperse more widely after the breeding season.


Jackdaw flocks are targets of coordinated hunting by pairs of lanner falcons, although larger flocks are more able to elude becoming prey.

Calls and Songs

The lanner's call is a harsh `wray-e`.