Friday, February 27, 2009

Prairie Falcon

Outside our house are some tall trees that the birds just love. The other morning I saw a small, crow-sized raptor fly up to the top of one of the Lombardy poplars. I ran back in the house to get the camera, because I instantly knew it wasn't a red-tailed hawk by its size and shape. With a closer look, I saw that it was a prairie falcon.

The prairie flacon has yellow feet, a mottled belly, darker back feathers, and interesting stripes on its face. The stripe that goes across its cheek is called the mustache--even for the females. 
Usually I spot prairie falcons low to the ground, not on the tops of trees. That's because prairie falcons fly low to surprise small mammals or other birds, their favorite prey. Prairie falcons are known to be aggressive birds. Their preferred habitat is open country, but apparently once in awhile they don't mind a change of scenery.


The Incredible Woody said...

Beautiful shots!

Sliv said...

Another kind of beautiful little guy

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