A first year Prairie FalconA first year Prairie Falcon – Nikon D300, f6.3, 1/800, +0.7 EV, Nikkor 200-400mm VR with 1.4x TC at 400mm, natural light, not baited

In the fall of 2011 I enjoyed being able to photograph this first year Prairie Falcon several times close to the Great Salt Lake in Utah. This young falcon hunted the birds found along the shoreline of the lake which at that time of the year was primarily waterfowl. Prairie Falcons inhabit the western U.S. southern portions of western Canada and northern areas of Mexico. During the winter birds are the primary prey of Prairie Falcons and during the breeding season they will take ground squirrels, lizards and insects.

Today is International Migratory Bird Day, a day when across the U.S. and Canada events and festivals are held to raise public awareness about birds and bird migrations, the environment and conservation. Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge is hosting a celebration of our feathered friends today that sounds like it will be great fun for everyone. Next week the Great Salt Lake Birding Festival opens on May 15th and runs through May 19th. Utah is a great place for birds and bird lovers!

I’m hoping to find some birds today to enjoy.