Dwarf Sparrowhawk Accipiter nanus


Justification of Red List Category
This species is classified as Near Threatened because, although it is very poorly known and difficult to identify, the paucity of records suggests that it is uncommon and has a moderately small population, which is suspected to be in decline owing to continued habitat loss. However, the montane forests it inhabits are relatively secure and a better understanding of its status may lead to it being downlisted in the future.

Population justification
The global population size has not been quantified, but the species is described as uncommon to rare (del Hoyo et al. 1992).

Trend justification
A population decline, as yet unquantified, is suspected on the basis of rates of habitat loss and degradation.

Distribution and population

Accipiter nanus is restricted to Sulawesi (uncommon to rare) and Buton (rare), Indonesia. It has been recorded from very few localities, although its similarity to the Vinous-breasted Sparrowhawk A. rhodogaster has possibly resulted in it being under-recorded.


It had previous considered a species of mountain and hill forest above 550 m (Ferguson-Lees and Christie 2001), however on Buton the species has been recorded down to sea level (Martin et al. 2012).


While the majority of forest loss on Sulawesi has occurred in the lower-lying areas, loss and degradation has also taken place in mid to relatively high altitudes and is considered likely to have caused this species to decline.

Conservation actions

Conservation Actions Underway
CITES Appendix II.

Conservation Actions Proposed
Survey to assess the size of the population. Research its tolerance of logged forest. Protect large areas of unlogged forest in areas where it occurs.


23-28 cm. A small and compact sparrowhawk, whose plumage is confusingly similar to that of A. rhodogaster, with dark grey upperparts and peachy breast quickly fading to clean white on the belly.


Text account compilers
Benstead, P., Mahood, S., Taylor, J., Martin, R

Martin, T.

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2020) Species factsheet: Accipiter nanus. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 14/07/2020. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2020) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from http://www.birdlife.org on 14/07/2020.