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Question about falcons

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by desertdarlene, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Crowing 8 Years

    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    I was wondering if peregrine falcons eat carrion? I know that hawks won't. The vultures at our lake carry all the dead things around and they seem to be all landing or ending up in an area that a falcon is temporarily staying. The birds are usually plucked and the feathers end up in a neat pile.

    The reason why I'm asking is that this falcon is hanging around an area where several of my favorite ducks are living right now. Also, I'm worried he will go after some of my favorite killdeer, too (most of the medium-sized birds have vacated the area, but they could come back at any time, too). Falcons usually show up around this time of year, but only stay a month or two, if even that. We do have quite a few dead animals around right now, mostly due to bad weather, accidents/illnesses, and coot fights (coots have the highest number of fatalities so far). Will that satisfy the falcon for some time, or do they have to have fresh kills?
  2. cgmccary

    cgmccary Songster 10 Years

    Sep 14, 2007
    NE Alabama
    Peregrines do NOT eat carrion. Fresh kills. However, Peregrines DO prey on ducks, pigeons, pheasants and small to mid-size birds including the killdeer.
  3. desertdarlene

    desertdarlene Crowing 8 Years

    Aug 4, 2010
    San Diego
    Quote:That's about what I thought, thanks! I did read somewhere that they might eat carrion if other food was scarce (which it is not in this area, but there is a lot of competition with other predators). So far, none of my special bird friends have been harmed, but I think a couple coots lost their lives to the falcon.

    The killdeer are especially upset and freaked out by the bird.
  4. sourland

    sourland Broody Magician Premium Member 9 Years

    May 3, 2009
    New Jersey
    Hawks will readily feed upon road killed squirrels and rabbits. I have even seen redtails feeding on deer carcasses. I'm quite certain that if hungry enough falcons would do the same.

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