Peregrine Falcon on Harrier Kill, Little Rann of Kutch

Ganesh K Jayaraman

Ganesh K Jayaraman

Chosen as 'Picture of the Week'

With the number of birders and photographers going up in India, newer records are being added regularly, especially in rich and unique habitats like Kutch. Serious birders and photographers now act as citizen scientists, constantly adding to the scientific knowledge of birds, their behaviour and their distributional range.

On a beautiful morning in the Little Rann of Kutch (LRK), Gujarat, I spotted this falcon with a kill from a distance with my binoculars. When we approached a bit closer it appeared to be a adult Peregrine with a kill. The bird was very skittish and moved away from us a couple of times. We retreated and waited till the bird consumed the kill. After sometime, the falcon decided let go of the remains and took off. We were curious to know what the kill was. When we got close to the remains we were surprised to see that the kill was an adult Montagu’s Harrier. We did not witness the action or the hunt itself but the kill appeared to be fresh. But we were convinced that the powerful peregrine is indeed capable of taking on other raptors. I will leave it to the falcon experts for their opinion. This sighting made our morning and compensated for not finding the Hoopoe Lark, which we were looking for, in the saline marshes of the Rann!

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