Harlequin Duck Histrionicus histrionicus


Taxonomic source(s)
AERC TAC. 2003. AERC TAC Checklist of bird taxa occurring in Western Palearctic region, 15th Draft. Available at: # _the_WP15.xls#.
Cramp, S. and Simmons, K.E.L. (eds). 1977-1994. Handbook of the birds of Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The birds of the western Palearctic. Oxford University Press, Oxford.
del Hoyo, J., Collar, N.J., Christie, D.A., Elliott, A. and Fishpool, L.D.C. 2014. HBW and BirdLife International Illustrated Checklist of the Birds of the World. Volume 1: Non-passerines. Lynx Edicions BirdLife International, Barcelona, Spain and Cambridge, UK.

IUCN Red list criteria met and history
Red List criteria met
Critically Endangered Endangered Vulnerable
- - -

Red List history
Year Category Criteria
2018 Least Concern
2016 Least Concern
2012 Least Concern
2009 Least Concern
2008 Least Concern
2004 Least Concern
2000 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1994 Lower Risk/Least Concern
1988 Lower Risk/Least Concern
Species attributes

Migratory status full migrant Forest dependency Does not normally occur in forest
Land mass type Average mass -

Estimate Data quality
Extent of Occurrence breeding/resident (km2) 36,200,000 medium
Extent of Occurrence non-breeding (km2) 47,500,000 medium
Number of locations -
Severely Fragmented -
Population and trend
Value Data quality Derivation Year of estimate
No. of mature individuals poor estimated 2012
Population trend Increasing suspected -
Decline (3 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (5 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/1 generation past) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation future) - - -
Decline (10 years/3 generation past and future) - - -
Number of subpopulations - - -
Percentage in largest subpopulation - - -
Generation length (yrs) 7.9 - - -

Population justification: The global population is estimated to number c.190,000-380,000 individuals (Wetlands International 2015), the population in Russia is estimated at c.10,000-100,000 breeding pairs and c.1,000-10,000 wintering individuals (Brazil 2009). The European population is estimated at 4,000-7,000 pairs, which equates to 8,000-14,000 mature individuals (BirdLife International 2015).

Trend justification: The overall population trend is increasing, although some populations may be stable and others have unknown trends (Delany and Scott 2006). This species has undergone a small or statistically insignificant increase over the last 40 years in North America (data from Breeding Bird Survey and/or Christmas Bird Count: Butcher and Niven 2007). The population trend in Europe is unknown (BirdLife International 2015).

Country/territory distribution
Country/Territory Occurrence status Presence Resident Breeding Non-breeding Passage
Austria V Extant
Belgium V Extant
Canada N Extant Yes Yes
China (mainland) N Extant
Croatia V Extant
Denmark V Extant
France V Extant
Germany V Extant
Greenland (to Denmark) N Extant Yes
Iceland N Extant Yes
Italy V Extant
Japan N Extant
Kazakhstan V Extant
Mexico N Extant
Mongolia V Extant
Montenegro V Extant
Netherlands V Extant
North Korea N Extant
Norway V Extant
Poland V Extant
Russia N Extant
Russia (Asian) N Extant
Serbia V Extant
Slovakia V Extant Yes
South Korea N Extant
St Pierre and Miquelon (to France) N Extant Yes Yes
Svalbard and Jan Mayen Islands (to Norway) V Extant
Sweden V Extant
Switzerland V Extant
Ukraine V Extant
United Kingdom V Extant
USA N Extant Yes

Important Bird and Biodiversity Areas (IBA)
Country/Territory IBA Name
Greenland (to Denmark) Assissut (Braendvinsskaerene) near Kronprinsens Ejland
Greenland (to Denmark) Kitsissut Avalliit (Ydre Kitsissut)
Iceland Myvatn - Laxa
Iceland Osar
Iceland Brúará
Iceland Sogid -Thingvallavatn
Greenland (to Denmark) Qilangaarsuit and adjacent islands
Russia (Asian) Babushkina bay
Russia (Asian) Tyk and Viakhtu bays
Russia (Asian) Shantarskiye Islands
Russia (Asian) Aniva bay
Russia (Asian) Lower Tumen river
Russia (Asian) Nevskoye Lake
Russia (Asian) Karaginskiy Island
Canada White Islets and Wilson Creek
Canada Sumallo River/Skagit Valley
Canada Chain Islets and Great Chain Islet
Canada Sidney Channel
Canada Lambert Channel/Hornby Island Waters
Canada Mitlenatch Island
Canada Cleland Island and Southeast Clayoquot Sound
Canada Kyuquot Channel Islets
Canada Checleset Bay
Canada Smith Sound Islets
Canada Moore and Byers Islands and Banks
Canada Mussel and Kynoch Inlet and Sheep Passage
Canada Grey and Green islets
Canada Alder Island
Canada Skidegate Inlet
Canada Lawn Point
Canada Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area
Canada Major Brown Rock
Canada Gannet Islands
Canada Churchill and Vicinity
Canada The Wolves Archipelago
Canada Grand Manan Archipelago
Canada Point Lepreau/Maces Bay
Canada Miscou Island
Canada Cape St. Mary's
Canada Bell Island South Coast
Canada Bay du Nord Wilderness Reserve and Middle Ridge Wildlife Reserve
Canada Gros Morne National Park
Canada South Shore (Port Joli sector)
Canada Eastern Shore Islands
Canada Northern Head and South Head
Canada Lac Deschênes
Canada Bonaventure Island
Canada Shigawake-Newport
Canada Baie de Gaspé
Canada Péninsule de Forillon
Canada Watshishou
Canada Baie Comeau
Canada Northeast James Bay Coast
Canada Grande Rivière de la Baleine
Canada Petite Rivière de la Baleine
Canada Rivers of the Lac Guillaume-Delisle Basin
Canada Rivière Nastapoka
Canada Cumshewa Inlet north to Sheldens Bay
China (mainland) Longfeng Wetland Nature Reserve
USA Amchitka Island Colony
USA Eastern Kodiak Island Marine
USA Glacier Bay & Icy Strait
USA Prince William Sound
Russia (Asian) Kekurny bay
Russia (Asian) Commander Islands
Russia (Asian) Babushkina and Kekurnyy Gulfs
Russia (Asian) North-east Sakhalin lagoons
Russia (Asian) Lesser Kuril Ridge and Kunashir Island
Iceland Breidafjördur

Habitats & altitude
Habitat (level 1) Habitat (level 2) Importance Occurrence
Marine Intertidal Rocky Shoreline major non-breeding
Marine Intertidal Tidepools major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Macroalgal/Kelp major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Seagrass (Submerged) major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Loose Rock/pebble/gravel major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Rock and Rocky Reefs major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy major non-breeding
Marine Neritic Subtidal Sandy-Mud major non-breeding
Wetlands (inland) Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls) major breeding
Altitude   Occasional altitudinal limits  

Threats & impact
Threat (level 1) Threat (level 2) Impact and Stresses
Biological resource use Hunting & trapping terrestrial animals - Intentional use (species is the target) Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 4
Species mortality
Natural system modifications Dams & water management/use - Large dams Timing Scope Severity Impact
Ongoing Minority (<50%) Negligible declines Low Impact: 4
Species disturbance, Ecosystem degradation, Ecosystem conversion
Pollution Industrial & military effluents - Oil spills Timing Scope Severity Impact
Past, Likely to Return Minority (<50%) Causing/Could cause fluctuations Past Impact
Indirect ecosystem effects, Reduced reproductive success, Species mortality

Purpose Primary form used Life stage used Source Scale Level Timing
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - - International Non-trivial Recent
Pets/display animals, horticulture - - International Non-trivial Recent

Recommended citation
BirdLife International (2022) Species factsheet: Histrionicus histrionicus. Downloaded from on 29/06/2022. Recommended citation for factsheets for more than one species: BirdLife International (2022) IUCN Red List for birds. Downloaded from on 29/06/2022.