Rare magnificent show from P. Falcon pair (20.10.15)

Hi,

I’ve been following this Peregrine Falcon breeding pair since 2003. Their hunting behaviour is exceptional special. You would never think the prey they caught were as heavy as or maybe heavier than their weight.

This morning (around 8.40am) as I was driving out to the main road with an elderly couple, I suddenly saw a huge flock of birds flying and scattered all over the rooftop! I knew these are not raptors, openbills or hornbills. I estimated the counting were around 100 or maybe more. I quickly stopped by the roadside (without binos and camera). I observed careful by the shape of the bird and flight and knew those were local bird. With the grey sky due to the haze it did not stop me from identified who are up there? Then I knew who are coming for them!! Peregrine Falcon!! I look up higher for them and finally I saw the breeding pair. Gosh…. No wonder these Rock Pigeon are flying and scattered everywhere to hide for their precious life. The falcon dived down 3-4 times before I lost sight on them but I knew they are still in between the huge flock. More pigeons flew below or behind the rooftop and the view was definitely blocked. I was so concentrated on the commotion that I nearly forgot to take any photos. Lucky the couple reminded me to take photographs. A big thank to them even though they are non birder. All images were taken from my mobile phone.

Unfortunately I did not wait to see them catching the pigeon. If I have enough time I would just rush to the valley and wait for them to come back with the prey.

For the first 60 seconds or slight more we saw was not so huge flock. Shortly when we thought all have already gone down suddenly a larger huge flock flew up. I saw few bigger birds in the crowd and suspect those are really raptors. When I checked from my PC it does looks like a shape of a raptor. Please check on those marking in white circle on the file #3339. Welcome any comments.

I’ve seen the male hunting for Rock Pigeon several times at my area during their nesting season but not as huge flock like this before. The most I have seen is around 30-40 pigeons flying up looking for a place to hide.

Another unexpected prey they hunted during nesting period is the Black-crowned Night Heron. These heron has a small colony below the limestone hill where the falcon breeds. Again few occasions I saw the male dived down suddenly and all herons started to scattered everywhere to escape from being one of the victims. The male eventually caught one and took it back to the nest.

3 images shown were taken this morning from my hp.

3 old images taken were near the nest site with Black-crowned Night Heron on flight.

Hope you enjoyed reading my story.

Regards,

Connie, Malaysia

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