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Incredible POV Video of Peregrine Falcon Killing a Duck in Mid Air

The Peregrine Falcon, also known as the Duck Hawk (a fact you won’t soon forget after watching this video), is a spectacular bird of prey. Claiming the title of fastest member of the animal kingdom, a Peregrine Falcon can reach speeds in excess of 200mph during its characteristic high-speed hunting dives — take that cheetah.

In the video above, YouTube user drhodie‘s falcon Dora happens to have a camera on her back as she performs one of these dives and takes an unsuspecting duck in mid-air.

falconduck

Dora is a Peale’s/Anatum Peregrine, making her a cross between the largest subspecies of the group and the standard American Peregrine Falcon. She is also female, which makes her much larger than the males of her species.

In addition to her incredible speed, Dora’s eyesight is also mind-boggling. Because Peregrine Falcons have two foveas (the part of the eye responsible for sharp central vision), one of which is shaped like a telephoto lens, Dora can see her prey from as far as 6 miles away.

In other words: the duck didn’t stand a chance.


 
  • Trythe1

    Is that blood? Yes! Oh how cute, hey sweetie why don’t you go pick up the duck’s head over there. Ohhhhh how adorable (⌒-⌒; )

  • http://profiles.google.com/ksuwildkat Rob S

    That is $%^&^%$ COOL!!!!

  • http://profiles.google.com/ksuwildkat Rob S

    circle of life

  • http://www.facebook.com/leoabreuphoto Leonardo Abreu

    wtf!

  • http://www.facebook.com/eric.cantrell.75 Eric Cantrell

    The falcon talks smack at 3:52…

  • wickerprints

    DAMN NATURE, YOU SCARY!

  • http://twitter.com/derbyperegrines Derby Peregrines

    Brilliant video

  • hdc77494

    The duck just happened to be at the same pond the falconer was at waiting for the falcon to return? Was this a set up with a released duck to “train” the falcon?
    It’s still an amazing animal, but I’m not sure the video is believable. If those four edited minutes show the falcon fly the duck back to the falconer, bravo…

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=589132353 Mauricio Andres Ramirez Lozada

    i’ve never had duck, now im feeling pretty curious about it

  • http://twitter.com/Theranthrope Theranthrope

    It’s a conspiracy, man!
    Why would that duck be just hanging around a wetland?
    It’s not like waterfowl hang around… water on their own, or anything…

  • hdc77494

    I have no question the peregrine is capable of capturing a duck in the wild, I just question whether this kill was staged for the video. The falcon flies several minutes, and finds a kill at the same pond the handler is waiting at? There is a four minute gap and the falcon could have carried the duck back to the handler, but we don’t know from the video.

  • http://twitter.com/maxicat12 beth

    Kind of irrelevant to me, really. It’s all about the vantage point and the action of the kill. Don’t care if it was set up or not.

  • txfalconer

    Falconry is ‘hunting’ with a trained raptor. For centuries falconers have used dogs to locate (point) and then flush game so the bird of prey can attempt to catch it. Duck hawking offers the falconer the ability to visually locate their prey and then, at times – using dogs as was very apparent in this video (you see and then hear the dogs), get the game in the air in attempt to capture or bag the duck – considered fair chase. If the duck out maneuvers the falcon the chase is over as a duck (and pigeon) will typically out fly a falcon in level flight. The ducks will, at times, simply choose not to leave the water.

    In this video the duck is struck and killed in the air at the edge of the pond. The falcon turned around in the air and went to it’s reward – the duck did not suffer. As incredible a bird a 2 pound falcon is they are not going to be able to fly a 4 pound duck anywhere. One the most common misconception about falconry is they retrieve like a dog. The falconer simply trains the bird to follow, wait on, and then either share the game or simply come back to the falconer when unsuccessful.

    To speak to the minutes edited out of the video, the falcon (if properly trained) will leave the fist and locate the pond, them slowly mount up to gain a height advantage to increase the chances of success. I’m sure you appreciate not having to watch 4 or 5 minutes of the falcon either sitting on a fence post or flying in circles to gain altitude.

  • hdc77494

    You’ve missed my point. I have no issue with falconry at all. My question was did the falconer release a duck for his falcon as a training exercise and then claim to film his falcon killing a duck in the wild? I was curious about the four minutes AFTER the falcon caught his prey. Was the kill at the pond where the falconer was waiting, or did the falcon fly back to his owner? That would tell us if it was a released bird or a wild one.

  • drhodie

    hdc77494 – I can assure you it was a wild Drake Gadwall taken in the air. The minutes after the flight, just after Dora circles back around and lands on the duck that fell right at the waters edge, was edited for the simple reason that we had to run the almost 150-200 yards down to the pond. You can barely make out our silhouettes in the still shot above where Dora has the duck in her cross hairs, and is flying back in our direction. If you look up the hill, on the horizon and just below, you see me running down towards the pond. The dogs flushed the ducks, there were 5. This one made the fatal mistake of turning over land, the others put back safely in the pond.

    The only time Dora ever flies back to me is when she’s unsuccessful and it’s time to go home. :) She flies back to me more times the I care to share…

    Falconry is hunting and we share most of what she catches. What I don’t eat she does during the off season when she molting – growing new feathers. Gadwall happens to be a very tasty meat and I have plenty of recipes if anyone is interested.

  • hdc77494

    Hodie, thanks for the clarification. I’ve hunted ducks many times and I certainly have no issue with falconry as I previously stated. My question, which you answered, was whether the FILM was of a wild kill, or was the prey introduced for training. Mine was a technical question, not a moral one. Thanks for a fascinating look at the incredible hunting skills of a magnificent bird.

  • Pete

    Hmm, video is “Private” is that just for Canadians, or did the owner shut it down because of all the attention?

  • Blaise

    Yep – private in France too. I believe it was shut.

  • jujujim

    Yes, that backpack was definitely photoshopped in… oh… erm…

  • http://www.facebook.com/RoseCityPhotography Hal Harrison

    The video is down :(

  • http://twitter.com/Theranthrope Theranthrope

    There is a difference between being skeptical (which I wish more people were) and being contrarian; which comes off as a(n unintentional) weak form of trolling.

  • LuisJ

    :( Can’t watch it…Appears as private video! :’(