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Aplomado Falcon - BirdForum Opus

Photo © by aplomado2u
Tlacotalpan, Veracruz, Mexico, Spring 2006
Falco femoralis


Photo © by arthurgrosset
São Paulo, Brazil, August 2004

Length 15-18" (38-45.5 cm), wingspan 40-48" (102-122 cm).
Like a small, long-tailed, boldly patterned Peregrine Falcon with white trailing edge on inner flight feathers.
Adult blue-grey above, with bold "moustache" on face, white eyebrow, and black stripe through eye. Nape rusty; throat white; upper breast buff with heavy streaks; lower breast and flanks black; thighs and belly cinnamon.
Young birds brown above, streaked on breast, plain brown on flanks.


Mexico through Central America, and South America to Terra del Fuego. Aplomado Falcon is extinct in its range of the USA which included parts of Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona; The Peregrine Fund is reintroducing the species[1].


Subspecies septentrionalis
Photo © by Stanley Jones
Northwest of Laguna Vista, Cameron County, Texas, USA, November 2009


There are 3 subspecies[2];

  • F. f. septentrionalis:
  • F. f. femoralis:
  • F. f. pichinchae:


The Aplomado Falcon inhabits partially open areas such as savanna, shrub-land, grassland with nearby trees, etc. from lowlands to above the treeline. Coastal plains and wetlands


Photo © by cfiguerero
Mercedes Ctes, Argentina, April 2010


Aplomado Falcons feed on birds, mammals, reptiles, and insects. They often hunt from a perch such as a low bush or fence post up to a tall cactus or telephone pole. From there, it will approach prey in low flight. Often attracted to fires where prey are easy.


A rapid series of sounds described in different sources with different lettering, but described as having a whistled quality.


  1. The Peregrine Fund
  2. Clements, JF. 2011. The Clements Checklist of Birds of the World. 6th ed., with updates to August 2011. Ithaca: Cornell Univ. Press. ISBN 978-0801445019. Spreadsheet available at http://www.birds.cornell.edu/clementschecklist/downloadable-clements-checklist
  3. Restall et al. 2006. Birds of Northern South America. Yale University Press. ISBN 9780300124156
  4. BF Member observations

Recommended Citation

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