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falcon

Falcons, Parrots, The Tree of Life

Scientists have puzzled for centuries over how different groups of birds are related. Did birds that look physically alike, such as falcons and hawks, arise from a common ancestor, or did they reach those similarities independently? This line of inquiry was given an immense boost in recent years... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  ornithology, science

Monitoring the Health of Coastal Raptors

Since 1995, biologist Dan Varland, Executive Director of Coastal Raptors, has been monitoring the health of raptors on the Washington coast, where Peregrine Falcons stoop on shorebirds feeding along the tideline. He’s looking for mercury and DDT in the birds’ blood systems. Though it has been... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, science

The American Kestrel Partnership

American Kestrels are the smallest falcons in the country. But they're such colorful and charismatic little birds -- they make up for their size with their attitude! In the last 50 years, American Kestrel populations across North America have declined by almost half. The lack of nesting... read more »

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Let's Go Birding - Tips from an Expert

Join members of the Klamath Bird Observatory in Ashland, Oregon, as they head east over the Cascade Mountains and drop down into the Great Basin. They're looking in particular for diurnal raptors, that is, eagles, hawks, harriers, vultures, and falcons that soar and hunt during the day. To... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birding

Follow Island Girl with Bud Anderson

"Peregrine" means "wanderer." And Island Girl, a Peregrine Falcon, has made the 18,000-mile round-trip journey from the high arctic of Canada to southern Chile three times. Bud Anderson of the Falcon Research Group calls her "a master of the air." Using satellite telemetry, he invites people to... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  migration, science

Peregrine Comeback

Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, which came out in 1962, linked the pesticide DDT to the decline of many birds, including songbirds. But Peregrine Falcons and other raptors had declined, too. When the birds ingested DDT, it caused their eggshells to thin and break under the weight of the incubating... read more »

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Aplomado Falcon

Aplomado Falcons were once widespread residents of the American Southwest, but by the 1950s, they'd disappeared entirely from the region. Loss of habitat, loss of prey, and pesticides all played a role. But in the 1980s, a group called The Peregrine Fund began breeding captive Aplomado Falcons.... read more »

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Crested Caracara

The Crested Caracara, one of North America's most charismatic birds of prey, is common in Texas, and an isolated population lives in Florida. They stride through the grass on long legs, as they hunt for small animals of all kinds. Many Mexicans honor the caracara as their national symbol,... read more »

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Birds See Better

Birds see better than we do. Birds see objects in fine detail, two-and-a-half to three times farther away than we can. Their eyes have the most highly developed retina of any animal. Avian sensitivity to the spectrum of light is far beyond ours. This Eurasian Kestrel uses its ability to see... read more »

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An Adventure on the Skagit

On the Skagit Flats, an hour north of Seattle, dramatic scenes of wildlife unfold every winter. "The flats" are broad, level deltas where the river drains into Skagit Bay. They offer a wildlife panorama with few equals in North America. Immense Bald Eagles stand ready to give chase for a winter... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birdwatching

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