Saturday, March 29, 2008

Possible Prairie Falcon?....In New Jersey?...

I just received a call from a DVOC member who was calling to report a possible Prairie Falcon seen flying north as their group was birding along Frieze Road, near the town of Salem in Salem County (an area that is known to many as the location to look for Brewer's Blackbird in the recent past.) This is in a location of expansive farm fields and very much the sort of place you might expect a Prairie Falcon to decide to hang out if one were in the area. The observation was made at about 11:45 am today, I received the call just before noon.

The bird was observed by several individuals and the verbal description that I heard sounded good, including views of obvious dark axillaries seen as the bird was flying away from the group. The thing to remember is that Prairie Falcon would be a new bird for the state of New Jersey so anyone claiming an observation of this species should submit a detailed write up to the NJ Bird Records Committee.

My intention with posting this information is to not verify the sighting, rather to simply to get the word out so that anyone who might be birding this area in the near future keep the sighting in mind. At this point there is no verification of the sighting through any written means or a photograph (that I know of.)

Good luck to anyone trying to relocate this potential state first. Please keep us informed on any further developments.

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