Bat Falcons

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Bat Falcons

Photo Wanted The Bat Falcon (Falco rufigularis) is a falcon that is a resident breeder in tropical Mexico, Central and South America and Trinidad. Its name is derived from its main prey -- bats.

This small dark bird of prey inhabits open woodlands and forest clearings. It lays 2-3 brown eggs in an unlined tree hole nest.


Description

The female Bat Falcon, at 30.5 cm length, is much larger than the 23 cm long male.

Adults have a black back, head and tail. The throat, upper breast and neck sides are creamy white, the lower breast and belly are black, finely barred white, and the thighs and lower belly are orange.

Young birds are similar but with a buffy throat.


Diet / Feeding

Bat Falcons perch conspicuously on high open snags, from which they launch aerial attacks on their prey. They hunt bats, birds and large insects such as dragonflies. The smaller male takes more insects, and the female more birds and bats. The flight is direct and powerful.

This fierce little falcon is partly crepuscular (active during the twilight), as the bats in its diet suggest.


Call / Song

The call of this species is a high pitched ke-ke-ke like American Kestrel.


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