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Prairie Falcon

Falco mexicanus


This is a medium sized falcon...plumage on the underside is white with mottled brown, as pictured. The upper side has blue-gray feathers on the wings, with a brownish upper back. The head exhibits a slanted dark line under the eyes.


This bird was spotted in an urban part of southwest Las Vegas, on a golf course. Its normal habitat in this area during the winter is low desert and occasionally in towns, per the attached Wikipedia article. This is the first I have spotted anywhere here in the Mojave Desert.


There are large flocks of coots in this area in the winter, and I assume this bird was following them. Per the attached Wikipedia article..."This species is often used in falconry. Although it is considered hard to train and unpredictable, it's the most popular falcon in the United States, due to its abundance and relative ease to acquire. It is also valued for its aggressiveness. Oservers of wild birds and veterinarians agree with falconers that it is one of the most aggressive raptors."

No species ID suggestions


Irene Brady
Irene Brady 3 years ago

Jim, I really appreciate your Description, Habitat and Notes. It adds a lot to these terrific photos.

Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson 3 years ago

Thanks Desmond, Beaker and Daniele...I am in good company with you.

Desmond.E.S.O 3 years ago

Extremely XXLarge and Gigantic Congrats! I love pic three!

DanielePralong 3 years ago

Congratulations Jim! Great series.

beaker98 3 years ago

Congratulations Jim! I've never seen a prairie falcon in person. Beautiful bird and wonderful series.

Jim Nelson
Jim Nelson 3 years ago

Thanks Ashley, and to all below. You made my day!

CalebSteindel 3 years ago


armadeus.4 3 years ago

Congratulations Jim!!!

Leuba Ridgway
Leuba Ridgway 3 years ago

This bird definitely looks like he knows what he/she wants ! Pic 2 is gorgeous even for an aggressive raptor. Congratulations on the SOTW Jim -well deserved and thanks for sharing.

triggsturner 3 years ago

Congratulations Jim on your SOTD. Great series of this fanatic species. Thanks for sharing them.

AshleyT 3 years ago

Congrats Jim, this great spotting has been chosen as Spotting of the Day!



The MnMs
The MnMs 3 years ago


Nevada, USA

Lat: 36.10, Long: -115.25

Spotted on Jan 13, 2016
Submitted on Jan 18, 2016


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