Forster's or Striated Caracara  Phalcoboenus australis

Little Marlow Gravel Pit - 13th April 2002

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The bird was chased by a Crow and hid under a bush where it stayed for some time.  It was clearly very tame.

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A Buzzard sized bird.  It seemed to like wandering around on the ground and stayed for some time in an open field.

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This adult bird  had apparently escaped from the falconry centre at the Thames Valley Garden Centre two days earlier when it was being flown.  It had previously escaped a few months earlier and had made news in the local papers.  The owners were alerted from their after work drink in the Kings Head pub and were soon on it's trail.  It is not known if it was captured.

In world terms this species is very rare with total numbers in the low thousands!  It is only found in the Falkland Islands and a few other islands off of the southern tip of South America.  Apart from bird collections that is!

Digital Photos courtesy of Jim Rose