In late 2020, Jean-Claude Camille observed a large raptor, but he was unable to suggest an identity or provide evidence for verification. On 26 February 2021, Alan Commetant, IDC Island Manager of Desroches, made a short video recording, showing the bird in silhouette. The size and small-head suggested a Honey-buzzard Pernis sp. and European Honey-buzzard, recorded previously in Seychelles, appeared to be the most likely identification.
On 5 August 2021, Elena Levorato (EL) and William McNeely (WM) arrived on the island to take up the posts of Conservation Officer and Assistant Conservation Officer respectively. They observed the bird in multiple locations and were able to obtain photos. These were sent to Dick Forsman, raptors consultant to SBRC, who identified the bird as a 2cy male Oriental Honey-buzzard Pernis. ptilorhynchus.
Oriental Honey-buzzard breeds from central Siberia east to Japan. Northern populations are migratory to tropical southeast Asia, southern populations mainly sedentary. The record has been accepted by SBRC as the first confirmed record of Oriental Honey-buzzard for Seychelles.