The chat and the falcon

It pays to be in the right place at the right time … the thing is, that when you are, it’s often a complete fluke!

Sunday afternoon out on the plains, I was watching a male White-fronted Chat, perched on a gate. This same spot is often a good place to observe Zebra Finches and I’ve seen a Black Falcon on more than one occasion.

Chat

Male White-fronted Chat, Moolort Plains, 10th January 2015.

Suddenly the chat and a bunch of other small birds scattered in all directions as a dark shape propelled into sight, at eye-level, along the fence-line.

Moolort-fenceline

Fence-line with Gorse and Tree Violet.

An immature Peregrine Falcon, one of the world’s swiftest birds in level flight, headed directly towards me and then banked abruptly to reveal its wonderfully patterned undercarriage. This hunting technique is typical of falcons and very often successful – this time the chat and its companions were lucky – as was the photographer. You don’t get many chances like this to capture such an extraordinary raptor.

PF1

Peregrine Falcon (imm.) – photographed as it climbed above the fence-line pictured above.

PF3

II

PF4

III

PF5

IV

PF8

V

PF7

VI

Moments later I spotted the falcon high overhead as it circled in continued its search of other unsuspecting prey, this time employing a different strategy.

PF9

VII

13 responses to “The chat and the falcon

  1. Great shots Geoff. The falcon is an immature bird.

  2. You must be so happy with the Peregrine shot – love to get one on a poster for Theo!

  3. Wonderful photo. Is not that plumage amazing, I think birds could teach Paris and Milan a thing or two about chic. Tres elegante …

  4. Wow! So beautiful.You must have had your heart in your mouth as you were taking those shots.  Janet Paterson BSc(Agric) PhD  PO Box 130 BROOKTON WA 6306 M: 0448 000 174 E: sciscribe@wn.com.au

  5. Beautiful shots a real feast for the eyes. I’ve taken the liberty to put a link to it over on my blog.

  6. Reblogged this on Birds as Poetry and commented:
    Here is a visual delight. Geoff Park has some wonderful shots of a Peregrine Falcon.
    To me it would be a once in a life time opportunity.
    Enjoy

  7. What a wonderful gift for Geoff to get this opportunity, the shots are so clear, thanks for sharing these David. I am yet to see one in the wild myself.

  8. WOW! Your photos give me so much pleasure, Geoff. Bev Cuvenor

  9. Bernie McRitchie

    Great photos Geoff. Inspirational!

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