Feathers of face and loxes close, stiff, and scale-like, no bristles; bill rather feeble; heavy and slow like Buzzards, feeding on reptiles and insects, especially large of wasps and bees, or even vegetable food in spring and berries in autumn ; nest in tree; eggs roundish, closely blotched with red brown on a red or yellowish brown ground.
Pernis apivorus apivorus (L.). HONEY BUZZARD. Fr. Bondr6e ; Ger. Wespenbussard ; lial. Falco pecchiaiola ; Swed. B ivrak.
8" 9 Subject to much variation. Above brown with dark shaft streaks, crown and face sometimes grey ; beneath, white with dark brown shaft lines and spots on breast and bars on abdomen and flanks, or uniform dark brown with partly concealed white bars on underparts ; head covered with short, stiff, scale like feathers (which identify at all ages). Bill horn black. Cere
bluish grey, yellowish next bill at base below. Legs and feet yellow. Iris orange yellow. Wing 370-440 ( 9 the larger). Tarsus 52-60. Bill 22-26. Young : iris brown grey to yellow grey. Cere and base of bill below yellow.
Breeds.ŚN. and C. Europe ; Denmark, Holland, Belgium (rare), Russia from 66░ N., Ural from 58░ N., south to N. Spain, Switzerland, N. Italy, Montenegro, Bulgaria, and Rumania ; occasionally British Isles. Migrates ; occurs on passage S. Europe, Egypt, and N.W. Africa. Winters in tropical Africa.