Peregrine Falcon

Falco peregrinus

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  • Peregrine Falcon |  Photo: Gary Hartley, NPS
  • Peregrine Falcon |  Photo: Gary Hartley, NPS
  • Peregrine Falcon |  Photo: Gary Hartley, NPS
  • Peregrine Falcon |  Photo: Gary Hartley, NPS
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Peregrine Falcon Photo Gallery

Basic Information

Order

Falconiformes

Family

Falconidae

Size

Peregrine Falcons are generally about 16 inches in length.

Lifespan

up to 20 years

Weight

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) facts, habitat, range, falcon pictures and bird watching tips to help you identify the bird of prey.

Diet

Carnivore

Behavior

Aerial Dive

Range

Southwest, California, New England, Western Canada, Alaska, Great Lakes, Southeast, Rocky Mountains, Pacific Northwest, Eastern Canada, Texas, Mid-west Mid-Atlantic

Nest Placement

Cliff

Number of Offspring

4-6 Eggs

Egg Description

Cream to brown with dark spots

Condition at Hatching

helpless, down covered, eyes closed, tiny

Social Status

Solitary/Pairs

Wingspan

3.5 ft

Observation Tips

Tend to nest in high areas. Many "bird-cams" online. The world peregrine fund has great one.

What does the Peregrine Falcon look like?

There are 19 subspecies of Peregrine Falcons worldwide that vary considerably. Peregrines like all falcons have a short tail and are slender with long tapered wings. In North America they are about the same size of the common crow. Adults have blue gray wings, pale under carriages and black bars on their backs. Their faces are white with black stripes and have huge dark eyes. Juveniles tend to be darker in color with a streaked under carriage.

Peregrine Falcon Habitat

Grasslands

Peregrine Falcon Facts

Female Peregrines are slightly larger than males. The monogamous falcons often mate for several breeding seasons in the same nest. Once a pair is formed the birds seemingly flirt with each other. Peeping, toe nibbling and softly grabbing of it's mates bill in its own. Young falcons typically learn to fly 30-40 days after hatching. Females reach breeding age around three and often breed before males. They lay an average of 3 eggs a breeding season. With extremely keen vision Peregrines often hunt in pairs and prey nearly exclusively on other birds. Peregrines are famous for their incredible speed, capable of reaching speeds well over 200 mph. The pesticide DDT devastated populations in the 20th century. Banning use and reintroduction programs have been highly successful in helping falcon numbers recover.

Peregrine Falcon Distribution



See also