While not as fast as a peregrine falcon, the saker falcon comes in a close 2nd. These falcons can be found in Europe and Asia. They also migrate, in winter, to the Arabian peninsula on south to Africa. Due to habitat destruction, hunting, trapping, and pollution – to name a few, these raptors are listed as Endangered by the IUCN. They number less than 30,000 and their populations are decreasing.
First the Stats…
Scientific name: Falco cherrug
Weight: Up to 2.1 lbs.
Length: Up to 22 inches
Wingspan: Up to 50 inches
Lifespan: Up to 25 years
Now on to the Facts!
1.) Saker falcons are diurnal (active during the day).
2.) Being sit and wait predators, these falcons will patiently look for prey while perched or they will look for food on the wing (while flying).
3.) While communicating, they make repetitive ‘kyak-kyak-kyak’ or a sharp ‘kiy-ee’ calls.
4.) These raptors are solitary but can also be found in pairs. When food is abundant, their tolerance for other sakers is greater.
5.) A group of falcons is called a bazaar or eyrie.
But wait, there’s more on the saker falcon!
7.) Sakers are monogamous (mate for life).
Did you know…?
The saker falcon can dive at speeds of up to 200 mph! While the 1st place peregrine falcon can dive at 240 mph!
8.) Females lay up to 6 eggs that hatch in up to 36 days.
9.) Male falcons are called tiercels, females are called falcons, and chicks are called eyas or eyass.
10.) The common name saker is derived from the Arabic as: صقر – Romanized as: Ṣaqr, which means simply “falcon”.
But wait, there’s still more on the saker falcon!
11.) The Hungarian mythological bird, the Turul, was most likely a saker falcon.
12.) In 2012, Mongolia chose the saker falcon as its national bird.
Did you know…?
Gyrfalcon-saker hybrids have also been found in the wild and are bred in captivity.
13.) The saker falcon is also the national bird of Hungary and the United Arab Emirates.
14.) In the Disney animated movie called Mulan, the main villain Shan Yu has a saker falcon named Hayabusa.
15.) Sakers have been used for thousands of years in falconry. Mainly due to their speed and power against game birds.
Now a Short Saker Falcon Video!
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