Gr. phalkon falcon
La. falcula, falcis small sickle
(representing their talons)
La. forma form, shape, kind
La. pereginus foreigner, stranger
|The Peregrine Falcon is about 18 inches long.
Dark bluish-gray upperparts, head, and facial markings. Off white
under neck and breast, barred underside, banded wings and tail.
Pointed wings. Females larger than males.
Except for polar regions, peregrine falcons range
worldwide. North American peregrine falcons range from Greenland
south through Canada and Alaska, into the continental United States,
through Mexico, and into South America.
|Nests on high,
inaccessible cliffs. Some nest on tall buildings in major cities.
Usually lay three to five eggs which hatch after about a
month and young fly in about one and one half months.
Feed during daylight hours mostly on birds. Attack prey in the air, sometimes diving over one
hundred miles per hour.
Peregrines are popular with falconers as they are
considered one of the more managable falcons.
|Falconry was a popular sport
of nobility more than 2000 years ago in China and for centuries in
medieval Europe. Falcons were a highly valued gift of kings.
Trained peregrines and other falcons hunted and retrieved game birds.
Falconry is still practiced today. In the U.S., federal and state
permits are required.
Falcon, eggs and chicks, John Chitty
American peregrine falcons, back from
severe decline, were federally listed as endangered on October 13, 1970, and state listed
as endangered on June 27, 1971.
Federally delisted in 1999. It remains on some
Peregrines range beyond some of the areas in the above
USGS map which is based
spanning several decades of the peregrine's recovery.
The pictured peregrine boxes were installed by ornithologist Peter
Ames, PhD, and Mr. John Chitty on a ledge about 30 stories high in Chicago.
Only professionals should attempt installing boxes as disturbances
can cause peregrines to abandon nest sites and may even violate Federal
Migratory and Insectivorous Game Birds
Peregrine Falcon Chicks, John Chitty