Sakers prefer open areas. The species is a typical raptor species for the steppes ranging from Central-Europe to Mongolia. Their typical habitats in Europe are wooded steppes in the lowland, agricultural areas, foothill lowlands. In Asia they live in steppes, semi-deserts, mountain plateaux (up to 4000 metres). Distribution range of Sakers is more or less overlapping with the distribution range of suslik species, their favourite preys.
In Europe, some young birds are moving to South in the autumn, adults are staying in the breeding area all year round. Migrating routes and wintering places of Central-European Sakers are little known. So far there are three ring recoveries of Hungarian Sakers from Lybia, one from Malta (shot) and one from Greece. Therefore, one particular aim of the Hungarian-Slovak LIFE-Nature project is to discover the migrating patterns and wintering places by tagging some Sakers with satellite tags.
Significant part of the Asian population is migratory. The main direction of of migration is South-Southwest. The known migration routes and wintering places cover Northeast-Africa, Arab Peninsula, Middle-East, Pakistan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Southern parts of Turkmenistan, some parts of China and Tibet Plateau.