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Photo Information
Copyright: Rick Price (Adanac) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 1273 W: 1 N: 6188] (21378)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2010-12-04
Categories: Birds
Camera: Canon 5d Mark II, Canon EF 600mm f4.0L IS USM
Exposure: f/10.0, 1/1600 seconds
More Photo Info: [view]
Photo Version: Original Version, Workshop
Date Submitted: 2010-12-04 15:52
Viewed: 3730
Points: 20
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Hello Everyone,
Today I have a posting that I think is a first for me, this is a juvenile Prairie Falcon. This young bird had better really takeoff and head south.
Here is some information on the Prairie Falcon from Weaselhead.org

Prairie Falcon
Falco mexicanus

General Description

By Lee Sollenberger

This is now an uncommon bird of the plains and the short grass prairies as well as the desert areas of North America. During the summer months, in Alberta, the Prairie Falcon lives in the arid southeast and in the Rocky Mountain foothills, formerly at least, as far north as Jasper National Park. By October, most migrate southward, but in some winters a few remain and appear at sites as far north as Edmonton.

Prairie Falcons occur in southern Alberta where cliffs offer secure nesting sites along major rivers at places such as Medicine Hat and Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park, or the Oldman and Sheep Rivers. Formerly, they nested at Raven Rocks in Fish Creek Provincial Park, within Calgary. After wintering in the southern USA and Mexico, the males arrive as early as March to reclaim their former nest site. Prairie Falcons are very vocal and are often heard screaming high overhead at the intrusion of people, long before their presence is known. In the winter, most move south, following populations of Horned Larks, one of their most important food items. Those that occasionally winter in Alberta may be seen pursuing flocks of Rock Pigeons or other birds anywhere in urban or rural areas. At that time, they frequently are seen perched in the open on utility poles.
During the breeding seasons, Prairie Falcons consume small to medium size birds. Horned Larks and American Pipits are their main food items. Mammals, such as ground squirrels are also taken. While some prey is captured in aerial pursuit, most is caught on the ground, in surprise, since they fly low over the uneven terrain, appearing unexpectedly at the last moment.
The nest is almost always on a cliff, a high rock face or other formation, preferably with a cave-like overhang and the opening facing southward. Occasionally an abandoned crow or other raptor nest in a tree may be used. Normally, the four to five reddish white eggs are laid on the bare ground. Incubation takes 29-31 days, mostly by the female. The nestlings are fed by both parents. They leave the nest when about 40-42 days old.

oscarromulus, Miss_Piggy, eqshannon, Pitoncle, jaycee, CeltickRanger has marked this note useful
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Critiques [Translate]

Great capture Rick. Good focus on the bird and a fast enough shutter speed. A nice framing as well. TFS Trevor

Great notes and so is the image.
Great timing, indeed!!!
Love your work with this neat hobby we share.
Fond regards from,
P.S. I do love my Canon equipment too; but I find the Sony nice & light for my age and stressful muscular pain I sometimes go through.

  • Great 
  • zetu Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 967 W: 26 N: 3888] (16941)
  • [2010-12-04 19:19]

Hello Rick
Amazing in flight capture taken with perfect focus and excellent details
Thanks for sharing this beauty

Hallo Rick
A first for you and what a great first it is. Not only for the bird itself, but the photography is first rate too. Wow, the detail is just great, especially the opened wingspan and the markings on the body. It is indeed a beautiful bird, which you captured with great clarity and fine style. It also have a peaceful feeling that surrounds it, don't know why, but it does. Thanks for sharing. Best regards.

You always seem to know when to click that trigger Rick.. Some get lucky. You do it 3-4 times a day!.

Lovely composition and excellent detail. A very exciting photo.


the moment the scene the photo, great photo!
TFS Nasos

  • Great 
  • foozi Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 2791 W: 0 N: 6696] (25839)
  • [2010-12-05 1:56]

Hello rick,
very elegant bird in its lively position. You have frozen the right moment to give a sense of excitement and suspense.
Nice pattern of the wings is well seen.
The dark shiny eye confirmed the sharpness.


Bonjour Rick,
Très belle publication d'une part par l'excellente opposition du sujet sur l'arrière plan qui attire le regard et d'autre part par l'appréciation de la finesse des détails et de la délicatesse des couleurs définies par une bonne profondeur de champ et une lumière bien maitrisée.
A bientôt sur TN pour de nouvelles aventures.

It has been a long day Rick! Well, let me suggest something here but before that let me say well done for this briliant image. Wonderful composition, the Falcon is captured in magnificent posture! Good detail, fantastic sharpness and depth of field. The white balance seems a bit off tune but not that bad in my opinion. Please check the workshop again and see my version of that image. What I would like to suggest you is to pay a bit more attention to the color temperature settings in your camera. Clearly some progress is obvious here. Thanks for sharing and have a great week Rick!
George Veltchev

  • Great 
  • jaycee Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2454 W: 10 N: 8044] (25460)
  • [2010-12-05 12:14]

Hi Rick,

Perfect timing to capture this Falcon in this fantastic takeoff position. Not only are the spread wings amazing but the bird is in perfect focus. We can clearly see the expression on the bird's face and every fine detail of his face and feathers. I love the simplicity of the composition against the blue sky. You should be soooooo proud of this one.


hello Rick

a great shot of this falcon shooted at the best moment
with very fine POV and framing, excellent focus sharpness
and details, that small catch-light render the photo always better,



Excellent shot! Congratulation.
But for me it is Falco rusticoulus, Gyrfalcon.

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