Monday, February 1, 2010

PostHeaderIcon Midweek Mystery Meal

One morning last week, ol' Sweep Commander and I approached Alcatraz's amazing National Park Service site supervisor, asking for her blessing in exploring some of the closed areas on the west side of the island. Initially we wanted only to scope out an area near the New Industries Building where a former Alcatraz wildlife biologist said that Heermann's gulls could sometimes be seen by the dozen. The search for exotic gulls proved fruitless, as there was nary an orange-beaked little gull to be found. There were no gulls in the area at all, for that matter.

However, we stumbled upon far too much radness to be disappointed. I saw my first black oystercatcher, we found numerous desiccated corpses from the 2008 cormorant colony (post coming soon), and MOST AWESOMELY:
We found the falcon with a fresh kill!

We're still working on figuring out what exactly it is that she killed, but this was incredibly exciting to both of us as we had yet to see her feeding. Even better, we've got it on video!

That's some National Geographic stuff right there.

Sidenote: If any of our lovely and knowledgeable readers out there have an idea of what our feisty falcon was feasting on, please feel free to share! Larger copies of the image can be found here.


Anonymous said...

In the spirit of wild ungrounded speculation, looks like an Alcid of some sort with those long gray legs and short tail.... common murre?? Kind of a big meal....hope she's hungry.

BourbonHawk said...

Common Murre was my thought as well. We never see any of them on the island, but I know they're around the bay. Obviously there's no real way to tell, but it's fun to guess.

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