Saturday, January 14, 2006

Also cool

It's an immature peregrine eating its raw breakfast on the deck of an Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge research vessel. I guess it grabbed that bird out of the air at sea and made for the boat to eat. Those blond fringes and streaks on its crown mark it as a arctic race, Falco peregrinus tundrius.

Peregrine means wanderer, and arctic-breeding peregrines migrate insane distances! A South African chap I know has trapped Siberian peregrines wintering on his local beaches. Alaskan birds head down right into South America. And they cross hundreds of miles of open water on their way. If they bump into ships on passage, they might spend a while cadging a ride. Sensible birds.

A map of the routes of satellite-tracked peregrines here.

Off to the office now. Work beckons. Not quite so far. Only five minutes walk, but like the peregrine, I may well pick up breakfast on the way.


Heidi the Hick said...

Here's proof of my geekiness: Now I totally get why in Lord of the Rings, Pippin's full name is Peregrine.

fatrobot said...

i don't eat raw birds for breakfast
not anymore

pluvialis said...

ah, the old days. Where has the Frontier Spirit gone?