Follow up to Kings Co. falcon
- I am a falconer and have had in front of my face all of the pure-bred and
all of the hybrid falcons you are referring to. From what I have seen in
real life, the picture is of a pure gyr. That is how they look! Just like
that! I showed the picture to both the saker (Lucky) and the GyrXMerlin
hybrid (Xy) that are in my yard and they agree that it is a pure wild gyr.
Karl G Kerster
I'd like to add a follow up on Ed's recent post about the Kings Co. falcon.
One field mark that several references point to about one difference between
the Gyrfalcon and Saker is that the tail is more spotted on the Saker and
barred on the Gyr. This can be seen in some of the photos Ed posted in the
file section. The Kings Co. bird definitely had a barred tail and in the
field I counted that the wingtip came just to the third pale bar up from the
To help make a more complete story and to show some of the photos Ed and I
have been looking at I've posted a pdf file on CALBIRDS in the file section
showing some similar plumaged Gyrs taken from the internet. When I saw the
bird both in flight and on the ground it did look larger to me than a
Peregrine. When the bird was perched on the post it did seem more smaller.
As in my original post on this bird its flight style was definitely more
From what's been discussed by Ed and from what I see if this bird is judged
a hybrid I think it will be mostly based on size. I'll have to leave that up
to others much more knowledgeable than I in such matters.
Ed and I have had a fun time communicating back and forth on this bird and I
think we both are waiting for more knowledgeable folks to come forth with
opinions. This has been a great learning experience for me and as with Ed
I've learned a lot about falconers and their birds. They sure do like to
hybridize them! I'm still hoping we'll hear from the falconers if such a
bird like this has been lost in a time frame that would fit the age of this
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