Thai National Parks

Species of Thailand

Collared falconet

Microhierax caerulescens

Carolus Linnaeus, 1758

In Thai: เหยี่ยวแมลงปอขาแดง

The collared falconet (Microhierax caerulescens) is a species of bird of prey in the family Falconidae.

It is found in the Indian Subcontinent and Southeast Asia, ranging across Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, India, Laos, Myanmar, Nepal, Thailand, Malaysia, and Vietnam.

Its natural habitat is temperate forest, often on the edges of broadleaf forest.

It is 18 cm long. Rapid wingbeats are interspersed with long glides. When perched, "rather shrikelike."

Taxonomy and systematics

The first description by a European ornithologist was published by George Edwards in 1750, as "the little black and orange colour'd Indian hawk". It was from a specimen that had been collected in Bengal and sent to the king's physician, Dr Mead. In 1758 the Swedish naturalist Carl Linnaeus used the illustration and description by Edwards to formally describe the species under the binomial name Falco cærulescens In 1760 the French naturalist Mathurin Jacques Brisson also used Edwards' publication to describe . Although the white collar was not mentioned, the English ornithologist Richard Bowdler Sharpe believed that this was the collared falconet. Richard Bowdler Sharpe introduced the genus Microhierax in 1874, from the Greek meaning "tiny hawk".


The collared falconet is a very small falcon, shrike-like in shape, mainly pied and having bold white supercilia and collar, with relatively heavy double-toothed bill. It has shortish wings, a medium-length tail, strong half-feathered legs, and powerful feet. It perches conspicuously on top or edge of tree or bush, often on dead twig, frequently bobbing head and slowly moving tail up and down; wing-tips less than half down tail. Sexes are similar.


Mainland southeast Asia: Himalayan foothills of north India (northern Uttar Pradesh northwest to Kumaun, and Sikkim, Bengal, mainly northern Assam) and of Nepal and Bhutan, and from Burma (central and east, south to Tenasserim), Thailand (northwest and west, but not peninsular, also in strip east of central plains), Laos

(central and south), Cambodia (especially north), and Vietnam.


Open deciduous forest, clearings and edges in evergreen forest, abandoned hill cultivation with some trees; often near water. Mostly 200–800 m, fairly regularly to 1, 700 m.

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Category / Seasonal Status

BCST Category: Recorded in an apparently wild state within the last 50 years

BCST Seasonal status: Resident or presumed resident

Scientific classification

Microhierax caerulescens

Common names

  • Thai: เหยี่ยวแมลงปอขาแดง

Conservation status

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)

Least Concern (IUCN3.1)

Vulnerable (IUCN3.1)

Vulnerable (ONEP)

Near Threatened (IUCN3.1)

Near Threatened (BCST)


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Collared falconet

Range Map

Distribution map of Collared falconet, Microhierax caerulescens in Thailand
  • Chiang Dao District, Chiang Mai
  • Chiang Dao Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Dan Sai District, Loei
  • Doi Inthanon National Park
  • Doi Lang
  • Doi Pha Hom Pok National Park
  • Doi Suthep - Pui National Park
  • Huai Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Khao Ang Rue Nai Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Khao Yai National Park
  • Khon San District, Chaiyaphum
  • Mae Ping National Park
  • Mae Wong National Park
  • Mueang Chiang Mai District, Chiang Mai
  • Na Haeo District, Loei
  • Nam Nao National Park
  • Namtok Mae Surin National Park
  • Non Din Daeng District, Buriram
  • Omkoi Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Op Khan National Park
  • Pa Sang District, Lamphun
  • Pai District, Mae Hong Son
  • Phu Khiao Wildlife Sanctuary
  • Salawin National Park
  • Thap Lan National Park
Range map of Microhierax caerulescens in Thailand