SX50--Drama on the rocks

Started 7 months ago | Discussions thread
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Don_Campbell
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SX50--Drama on the rocks
7 months ago

Spring is definitely in the minds of my peregrine falcon friends at the cliffs. There is a lot more hanging out near the eyrie (nesting site) and other birds and animals are also feeling Spring coming on.

This sequence shows a northern harrier "buzzing" our adult female peregrine. She allowed this to go on over many minutes with a dozen or more "runs" at her at close range.

She sees the harrier coming and braces for the attack.

The harrier does not have the speed of a peregrine and "dives" feet first.

The harrier turned and came right back from the other side.

It was curious to those of us observing that the larger and more powerful peregrine did not react and allowed these buzzes to go on for such a long time. Then I read that one of many behavioral traits of the female peregrine when getting close to egg laying is to be relatively passive--allowing the male to hunt and not being as aggressive in defense of the eyrie and the area.

The peregrine did eventually fly to a nearby cliff when a crow joined in with the diving game. The harrier then went after the crow for a prolonged aerial dog-fight, doing no damage but clearly tiring the crow out.

Burst mode is great for catching rapid sequences like this although it would be nicer if one could manually set the shutter, aperture and ISO.

Thanks for looking,

Don

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