Peregrine Falcon Alert


If you like birds, keep an eye out for peregrine falcons! These lovely birds of prey pass through the area around now (some stay for the winter) and have a taste for the local wildlife — mammals, as well as other lesser birds. There’s one falcon that’s taken to hanging around the parking lot at Arlington Central Public Library, much to the consternation of area squirrels. I also saw a pair of falcons worrying stragglers out of a flock of starlings over Key Bridge. Like DCeiver, I despise starlings with a black heart of pure hatred, so I was definitely cheering for the predators.

But the best peregrine falcon sighting I ever had was one in April 2005, when one of the birds decided to perch in a tree right by the Smithsonian Metro entrance on the National Mall, with half of an uneaten squirrel hanging from a nearby branch, while cherry blossom tourists gawked at the scene. Fun times. (Pictures after the jump, with a mild gore warning.)

IMG_1925 IMG_1927

Roving Asian mendicant, can occasionally be seen wandering the streets of downtown Washington, muttering unintelligible gibberish to passers-by while pushing a “bag lady” shopping cart full of old blankets, American flags, soda cans, and healthy secondhand snacks from organic food shop dumpsters. Used to live in a cardboard box at 16th and K but the rent was too expensive.

3 thoughts on “Peregrine Falcon Alert

  1. We’ve also got red-tailed hawks in the area and, to me at least, they can be hard to distinguish from each other. I’ll have to link to our pictures of the one in our backyard yesterday when I put them up.

  2. Pretty sure we have a peregrine on campus. I’ve seen her eating in her tree outside my dorm a few times.

    She also fell out of a tree. It was pretty funny/humiliating.

  3. I saw one of these picking through what looked to be a rabbit about 10 feet a very busy walking path on GMU’s campus. A big, bold bastard too: he ended up with a pretty big crowd watching him finish his meal, and didn’t seem to be bothered at all.