01 May, 2012

Felipe On the Move Again?

After ten days in the high Puna grasslands of southern Peru, Felipe flew about 120 km (75 miles) to the NE. Although he is still very high in elevation, this jump could be the pre-cursor to heading for the arctic again.

This is the first time anyone has documented an extended "staging" period in an arctic migrant male peregrine in Peru. If indeed that is what it is.

If so, it adds yet another reason to conserve the unique and vast grasslands of the altiplano.

Over the years of the project, I have learned not to predict what these birds will do next. When I do, I am usually worng.

I can wonder about it however, as I am sure many of you are too.

Will he remain in the highlands of Peru?

Will he suddenly head NW, drop down to the coast and migrate like crazy making up for lost time?

Will he veer to the NE and drop into the Amazon basin like another tagged falcon,Chamiza, did several years ago?

Or will he follow the cloud forested eastern slopes of the Andes to Colombia?

 It is even conceivable that he could cross the Amazon heading NE towards the Lesser Antilles and fly north over the Caribbean to eventually migrate up the east coast via Florida.

In the meantime, he is setting records for a migratory pause among our tagged birds.

Either way you look at it, he is revealing new and unsuspected details about arctic peregine migration.

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