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Peregrine Falcon – MY Shot of the Day – October 3, 2012

peregrine falcon

 

I met this beautiful Peregrine Falcon at an event hosted by the Peregrine Fund, an incredibly successful organization that works to protect raptors from extinction.  They have been instrumental in bringing the gorgeous Peregrine (Falco peregrinus) back from the brink of extinction.

The Peregrine is an amazing being.

Peregrines hunt from above and, after sighting their prey, drop into a steep, swift dive that can top 200 miles an hour (320 kilometers an hour).

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Those that nest on Arctic tundra and winter in South America fly as many as 15,500 miles (25,000 kilometers) in a year. Yet they have an incredible homing instinct that leads them back to favored aeries. Some nesting sites have been in continuous use for hundreds of years, occupied by successive generations of falcons.

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Peregrine populations were in steep decline during the mid-20th century, and in the United States these beautiful falcons became an endangered species. The birds have rebounded strongly since the use of DDT and other chemical pesticides was curtailed.

Here in northern New Mexico, Peregrine Falcons have made a slow but steady come-back, breeding locally in the Sangre de Cristo mountains and walls of our rugged river canyons – such as the Rio Grande gorge.

If you are a bird lover….or just a good person…I urge you to join the Peregrine Fund and help them keep raptors flying.

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