*** Wild Lens Scientific Director Neil Paprocki worked during the 2014 summer in Nome, Alaska on The Peregrine Fund’s Gyrfalcon Conservation Project with Boise State University graduate student Bryce Robinson. You can learn more about this project via previous Wild Lens blog entries ***
This particular hatch-year Gyrfalcon was trapped less than one-mile from his nest more than a month after fledging. The nest produced a total of 4 fledglings, and his 3 siblings appeared to have wondered further from the nest. Perhaps this little male is having trouble hunting on his own and finding enough food.
Several times this summer we witnessed young Gyrfalcons more than a month out of the nest still following and begging for food from their parents. At what point do the parents stop feeding their own offspring and thus force them to hunt for themselves? I imagine it depends a lot on the individual differences between parents.
I suspect this male was no longer being fed by his parents given his low body weight. Hopefully he’ll quickly learn to no longer depend on his parents for food and become the formidable hunter he was born to be.
Tags: alaska, Falco, Falco rusticolus, falcon, gyrfalcon, hatch-year, juvenile, raptor, seward peninsula, wild