Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Two Small Falcons/Wild Bird

Female American Kestrel (Falco sparverious)

I have been watching for this small falcon in her favourite haunts since last spring when last I saw her. FINALLY on Sunday I spied her on some overhead wires with what looked to me like a young female. I guess motherhood has kept her busy.

Of course, I may have easily been passing her by mistaking her for the mourning doves that also frequent the wires from which she swoops down onto a grassy field to catch tasty morsels such as voles and grasshoppers.

Another small falcon I haven't seen for a while is...


Merlin (Falco columbarius)

a Merlin, about the size of a pigeon so not much bigger than a Kestrel.

This is not a super shot, but  the Merlin wouldn't let me get very close. (This is a severely cropped photo.)  I saw this little falcon twice and both times it was quite uncooperative.

The first time I saw the Merlin, it attacked and nearly took down a belted kingfisher.  The frustrated Merlin flew up to a fence, then saw me and took off.  The lucky (and wise) belted kingfisher found another place to hunt for lunch.

The second time I saw the Merlin, it was hunting dragonflies and caught several.  I'm thinking dragonflies must taste crunchy like crackers or potato chips do to us. Or not.
I am connecting to Stewart M's Wild Bird Wednesday HERE

35 comments:

Buttons said...

Oh wonderful shots and I love your story. It would be so much fun to photograph all the beautiful birds you always share with us. I can never capture them as well as you can. Amazing. B

Roan said...

Lucky you. Great shots even if you did have to crop. There is a Kestrel I see from time to time, but he flies the second I get close enough even for a bad shot.

lindaakacraftygardener said...

Lovely shots of a gorgeous bird.

Sandra said...

that is one beautiful lady in the first photo.. we are not sure which hawk visited us this week, but the pool and the pool deck was covered in feathers of a dove, so we know he was here.

Pamela Gordon said...

Beautiful birds. The first photo is excellent! It is difficult to 'sneak up' on birds or other animals and get those perfect shots.

Viola said...

What lovely photos! =) and the first one of the American Kestrel is so sharp! what a beautiful kestrel!

Also I like the photo of the Merlin.

Our photos said...

Beautiful bird!
Greetings, RW & SK

Malyss said...

On the first pic, this "hunter" seems so cute!Great shots!

TexWisGirl said...

that kestrel photo is superb!!!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Some of these birds are most uncooperative,so even a less than perfect shot is a keeper. The Kestrel picture is amazing.

Stephanie said...

Nice looking birds.

RedPat said...

Lucky you for seeing these birds and being able to get a pic of them too! I love your bird shots, EG!

mick said...

Great photos - especially that first close-up one!

Gary Phillips said...

Nice finds!! Boom & Gary of the Vermilon River, Canada.

Giga said...

Takiego pięknego ptaka nigdy mi się nie udało "złapać" aparatem, nawet z bardzo daleka, dlatego gratuluję :)
Such a beautiful bird I never managed to "catch" the camera, even from far away, so congratulations. :)

eileeninmd said...

The Merlin and the Kestrel are both cool birds. Great photos and sightings.

kelley jensen said...

I see the kestrel fairly often around here. Great pictures.

Gill - That British Woman said...

super photos as always.

Gill

Rose said...

Oh, I so wish I could get a good shot of kestrel!

Here this summer, we have been gone on drives all day long and not seen a single hawk. We have really wondered what has happened to them.

Then the other day, I saw three! In one day!

Wally Jones said...

ANY photo of a Merlin is a good one! Nice work!
The Kestrel is a beauty.

Very nice post.

Lisa Gordon said...

What a beautiful bird this is!

Larry said...

Beautiful shot of the Kestrel CG! I am lucky to see them almost daily on the wires off the road I travel to work. However they torment me by taking flight whenever I get within camera range. After months of trying, I finally got some good shots of American Kestrels in a different location. I have still not gotten a decent photo of the Merlin. They are much more scarce.

Michelle said...

I admire your bird pictures. I am not patient enough to photograph them!

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

Some really love being photographed! Others... sigh!
Cheers from Cottage Country Ontario

Randy said...

I like the pattern on the wings.

Jack said...

You amaze me, EG. You can tell one bird from another?

Cheryl @ TFD said...

Beautiful shots! I especially love that first one. Pretty birds!

Carole M. said...

absolutely fantastic; great photos

Margaret Adamson said...

Loved the Kestrel and it was wonderful to get any shot of the Merlin at all. Well done.

llandudnopictures said...

What a pair of beauties, fantastic captures!

Brian King said...

What a gorgeous shot of the Kestrel!

Gunilla Bäck said...

Gorgeous birds!

edenhills said...

I think these falcons and hawks are the hardest to capture. They never sit still. Your captures are wonderful!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

It is evident that your patience paid off, you got some wonderful images of this beauty~

Mary Howell Cromer said...

It is evident that your patience paid off, you got some wonderful images of this beauty~

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East Gwillimbury is a rural town less than an hour north of Toronto, Canada's largest city. My family calls me CameraGirl because I take my camera with me wherever I go.