Subadult Peregrine Falcon – Photo Study

Alex LamoreauxBird Finding Tips, Bird Sightings, General News and Info, Photography1 Comment

On the way home from work today, Anna and I spotted a Peregrine Falcon perched on a telephone pole along State Highway 78. As we drove up to what I had assumed was an adult falcon and began taking photos, I saw that the breast feathers and overall breast color pattern looked a little weird. Then I realized, the bird must actually be a subadult that was molting into adult plumage. As we drove past it, and I was able to get a look at its back, my assumption was proven; the back had a nice mixture of adult and juvenile feathers and the tail had juvenile outer feathers and adult inner feathers. This blend of juvenile and adult feathers created a unique pattern on the bird, making it one of the most beautiful Peregrines I have ever seen, not to mention how close I was able to see him from! Last year on July 2nd I saw two juvenile Peregrines a few miles south of where I saw the one today. Then I didn’t see another one in this area till the first week of August when I found an adult in almost the exact spot where I found the subadult today. Below are some photos of the bird; look closely at the blend of juvenile and adult feathers, especially on the top of the wings and the tail.

Peregrine Falcon - subadult; I wanted to name this post "High Voltage Peregrine", but Anna said that was dumb.....

Peregrine Falcon - subadult

Peregrine Falcon - subadult

Peregrine Falcon - subadult

Peregrine Falcon - subadult