Living life at the top of its food chain the Peregrine Falcon is a formidable and highly accomplished predator. It has a renowned ability to reach great speeds in flight while chasing prey. The Peregrine will often hunt pigeon and other similar sized birds from above, diving down to hit them with great impact. Once the prey has been caught they kill with a bite to the vertebrae using a specially shaped tooth on the upper mandible.
The head is mainly black with a white chin and throat. There is fine dark barring on the breast and the back is dark. It has dark eyes with a yellow eye-ring. The legs and feet are yellow and equipped with powerful talons. Its long, narrow and pointed wings give the bird powerful and agile flight ability.
They do not build nests, but use ledges on cliff faces as a nesting site, often re-using a nest site in their territory from a previous season. Other nesting sites can include ledges on buildings in cities and stick nests of other species. They lay 2 – 3 eggs that are incubated by both sexes for about a month.
The young chicks will spend about another month in the nest before leaving to become another fine tuned predator. Once they have left the nest they will fly with the adults who will teach them how to hunt. The adults will drop prey for them in mid-air and the young birds will practice catching and killing their prey.
If you hear the distinctive alarm call of the Noisy Miner and other small birds in the Parklands, look to the sky and you might see a Peregrine Falcon circling overhead. If you are lucky you might even see it diving down on a Pigeon.