23 April, 2014

Into Peru and a Return....

Yesterday, Island Girl continued to fly north along the coastline, passing through Arica and then across border into Peru.

From there, she "rounded the bend", making the geographic left turn that follows the Pacific route. She chose not to ascend up into the highlands as several other peregrines have done here in the past, including Island Girl.

This is always a major decision point for peregrines on their migration north.

She covered 381 km (237 miles) for the day, and flew past Tacna, Moquegua, Mollendo and Arequipa (farther up the hill) all towns in Peru.

She came to roost out in the open, on the side of a rocky hill in an area that I know quite well. It is near the town of Majes.

She had roosted only 16 km (10 miles) from this spot two years ago. If you have followed her on this blog in the past, you have seen pictures of this area. I had driven out into the desert and actually found where she had roosted among the rocks back then. So she seems to know this broad, flat plain that lies just around the bend.

I am sure that she must recognize it. She has been by it at least 15 times during her north and south bound journeys.

Her hillside this time was located 64 km (40 miles) inland and at 6,401' in the foothills of the Andes. Just east of her they start to soar up into the Puna at 13,000'.

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