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Peregrine Falcon

Juvenile Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus)

The name "peregrine" means wanderer. The peregrine falcon is a cosmopolitan bird that breeds on every continent. Currently, there are an estimated 150 pairs of peregrine falcons in California-up from just two known pairs in 1970!

This aerial predator has a wingspread of three to four feet and hunts a wide variety of birds and bats that are captured in the air during high-speed dives. Male peregrines are "pigeon or crow-sized" while females are the size of a larger gull. Peregrines nest on cliffs throughout California and particularly near rivers, and on sea-coasts, or islands. They also nest on bridges and buildings.

Please don't approach their nests! A loud "kacking" call indicates that nesting is being disturbed.


 

Copyright Barbara Samuelson 2001
Juvenile Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus)
This Peregrine falcon was banded in the Marin Headlands north of San Francisco.


Copyright Barbara Samuelson 1997

Adult Peregrine falcon (Falco peregrinus) at the Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center, Sitka, Alaska. This peregrine has a congenital eye defect and is partially blind and would not have been able to feed itself, so that it cannot be released into the wild.

Growth and Development of Peregrine Falcon Chicks


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