Prairie Falcon: Medium falcon with brown upperparts, dark-spotted pale underparts, dark brown moustache stripe. Dark underwing-bars visible in flight. Feeds on small birds and mammals, and large insects. Swift flight with rapid wing beats. Sometimes alternates several rapid wing beats with a glide.
Range and Habitat
Prairie Falcon: Breeds from British Columbia and the Canadian prairie provinces south to Mexico and northern Texas. Spends winters in breeding range and sparingly farther east. Preferred habitats include barren mountains, dry plains, and prairies.
The Prairie Falcon has a large range, estimated globally at 3,800,000 square kilometers. Native to Canada, the United States, and Mexico, this bird prefers wetland, grassland, and shrubland ecosystems, though it can live on pastureland. The global population of this bird is estimated at 10,000 to 100,000 individuals and does not show signs of decline that would necessitate inclusion on the IUCN Red List. For this reason, the current evaluation status of the Prairie Falcon is Least Concern.
The Prairie Falcon was first described in 1850 by Hermann Schlegel, the German ornithologist.
It often shares its nesting cliff with Common Ravens, Golden Eagles, and Red-tailed Hawks.
They sometimes bathe in river shallows, but dust-bathing is probably more common than water-bathing, because of the general scarcity of standing water in its habitat.
A group of falcons has many collective nouns, including a "bazaar", "eyrie", "ringing up", "stooping up", and "tower" of falcons.