The black kite Milvus migrans is a common bird of prey demonstrating remarkable ecological plasticity. It inhabits a variety of habitats and is an increasingly synanthropic species. The black kite is widespread in Eurasia, Africa, Australia and adjacent islands. Palearctic kites migrate to Africa, India and China in winter, but kites of Africa and Australia are partly sedentary and partly seasonal migrants. The wide range and high mobility are the reasons of a complex population structure of the black kite. Commonly five to seven M. migrans subspecies are distinguished, each of which is widespread over extensive areas and has more or less an apparent phenotype. Recently, studies of genetic differences between black kite populations started to emerge. On the grounds of earlier studies of mitochondrial and nuclear genes of this species, we check whether there is a genetic support for separation of the black kite subspecies. Recent studies of some mitochondrial loci substantiate the recognition of at least the European (M. m. migrans), Asian (M. m. lineatus and M. m. govinda), African (M. m. aegyptius and M. m. parasitus), and Australian (M. m. affinis) black kite subspecies. Furthermore, the mitochondrial haplotype difference suggests that the African yellow-billed kite, including M. m. aegyptius and M. m. parasitus, should be a separate species as already proposed, or even two separate species.