Falconiformes – falcons, kestrels Sólyomfélék
The Falcons was very popular birds in every time. This birds usually very effective hunters with very good skills, and can acchieve high speeds. In the past Kings has spent lots of time with falcon hunting. Most falcons eat flying birds, which they catch in flight. Usually falcons leave their prey easily for other birds of prey, while for example they can fight successfully even with eagles for nests for example.
Peregrine falcon – Falco peregrinus
The fastest bird of the Earth. Peregrine falcons can reach 400km/h where diving (Can check youtube if you want to see this). A bigger sized falcon with unique charasteritics. The female is usually bigger than the male. One female bird occured in the past regularly in Budapest at the St Stephen’s Cathedral.
Hobby – Falco subbuteo
The Hobby looks like a smaller Peregrine falcon. The two falcons has the same look, formes and colours, but a Hobby is a little bit smaller and thinner. The Hobby has a reddish colour at the legs, and under the tail, which the Peregrine falcon doesn’t have. The Hobby is a more common bird, than the Peregrine falcon in Hungary. The Hobby likes to hunt for Swallows at migration. The hobby eats flying birds, insects, or bats.
Saker falcon – Falco cherrug
The Saker falcon has a relatively bigger population in Hungary, thanks to extensive protection. The Saker falcon is a little bigger than the Peregrine falcon. The Saker falcon has approximately a size of a buzzard. It’s main diet is a cute ground-squirrel. Unfortunately the ground-squirrel extinct in Hungary. But the story fortunately doesn’t ended there, enthusiast birders has relocated the ground-squirrel. So there is the extremely cute ground-squirrel and Saker falcon as well are presented in Hungary. The Saker falcon has a brownish colour. The female is a little bigger. Apart from the ground-squirrel eats flying birds as well.
Merlin – Falco columbarius
The Merlin is a usual winter visitor in Hungary.(Like the Santa Clause :)) The Merlin is a small falcon (25-30cm-1 foot). They counted 28 No of Merlin in 2012 winter. A really speedy bird, catches flying birds, rodents and insects. The Merlin also like plain, non-forested habitat, like seashores, marshes, or grasslands. They put their nest in the ground or on a tree. They have 4-6 eggs, which they needed approximately 30 days to have the chicks come out of the eggs. After the chicks spend 25-27 days in the nest.
The Kestrel is together with the buzzard is quite common bird in Hungary. I wouldn’t be surprised if several thousand pair Kestrel Nests in Hungary. The Kestrel is a smallish birds of prey, smaller than a Crow. The Kestrel has a brownish redish, and grey colour. The Kestrel likes the plain areas, even agriculture areas is convenient for the bird. not very shy bird not so difficult to photograph. The Kestrel sees the ultraviolet marks of it’s main diet, the rodents. In fligth usually flies at a place, not moving, while looking downwards for prey, this is a very typical behaviour of the Kestrel. The Kestrel is a non-migrating bird, spend the winter in Hungary.
Red footed falcon
Red footed falcon is a very interesting bird in Eastern Hungary. A Red footed falcon is a highly protected bird. The Red footed falcon is a little bit smaller, than the Kestrel, but has a similar shape and has different colours. The two species has a similar habitat, both likes the grasslands with several trees. The diet of the two species are different: while the Kestrel eats mostly rodents, the Red footed falcon eats mostly flying insects. The Red footed falcon is a colonially nesting bird, usually uses the nests of the Crows. Nowadays sometimes accepts nest boxes as well. Hungary is the Western border of the Red footed falcon habitat. The male has blueish colour, while the Female has orange breast and blueish back. A beautiful bird. The Red footed falcon catches the insects in flight.