Merlin - Click To Enlarge

Merlin

Merlins are small, fierce falcons that use surprise attacks to bring down small songbirds and shorebirds. They are powerful fliers, but you can tell them from larger falcons by their rapid wingbeats and overall dark tones.

Merlin - Click To Enlarge
Merlin – Click To Enlarge

Medieval falconers called them “lady hawks,” and noblewomen used them to hunt Sky Larks. Merlin populations have largely recovered from twentieth-century declines, thanks to a ban on the pesticide DDT and their ability to adapt to life around towns and cities. (Cornell Lab).

Photographed at The Avian Conservation Center, South Carolina.

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