1. bookVolume 26 (2018): Issue 2 (December 2018)
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2061-9588
First Published
08 Oct 2013
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Open Access

Extreme territorial aggression by urban Peregrine Falcons toward Common Buzzards in South-West England

Published Online: 14 Feb 2019
Volume & Issue: Volume 26 (2018) - Issue 2 (December 2018)
Page range: 232 - 242
Received: 18 Oct 2018
Accepted: 30 Dec 2018
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2061-9588
First Published
08 Oct 2013
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus) breeding on a city centre church in Exeter, in the south-west of England, have been studied in detail since first occupation in 1997. During this period, changes in both male and female falcons have been recorded. Following the arrival of a new female Peregrine in 2009, a dramatic change in behaviour towards Common Buzzards (Buteo buteo) on passage over the city was noted. Buzzards flying over Exeter are attacked by the falcons, especially so when in proximity to the church. We have attempted to document these attacks through our own observations, with additional information from local residents and wildlife organisations. Further records have come from veterinary surgeries and wildlife rehabilitators regarding injured buzzards found in the city. This paper documents the extreme levels of territorial aggression as demonstrated by the pair of Peregrines during cooperative attacks on Buzzards. We reveal this unique interspecific behaviour by summarising the number, frequency, timing and outcome of attacks undertaken over an eight-year period. We describe and illustrate the strategy employed by the Peregrines during a typical attack, plus consider implications on breeding productivity and the future scenarios should one of the current pair be replaced.

Keywords

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