This is no buzzard and it does not eat honey. It is a bird of prey which superficially looks like a buzzard but has a longer and narrower tail. The size and the bars across the underside of the wings and tail are diagnostic.
These are long distance migrants wintering south of the Sahara and breeding, secretively in the woods over most of Europe (and the nearer parts of Asia). In the East of the Old World the Crested Honey Buzzard takes over. The birds mainly eat the grubs of wasps and other insects and digging out of nests got it its name. It has very dense and scaly feathers on the head to protect it against stings and it snips the sting from the adult wasps before eating them. A classic soaring migrant. About 25 pairs breed in Britain.
Just two species - forming a super-species.
Length 560 mm Closed wing 410 mm Weight 750 gms
A Bird On! Sketch by Chris Mead
Copyright © 1996 by Jacobi Jayne & Company and Chris Mead