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Aplomado falcon; Chilean name Halcón perdiguero        Images © Mark A. Chappell

Aplomado falcons are medium-sized, colorful falcons from Central and South America that barely survive in the United States.   They used to occur in southern Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico, but became extinct there in the 1950s. The adult female above was photographed near Puerto Natales in southern Chile.   In recent years, aplomado falcons have been reintroduced in south Texas with the help of The Peregrine Fund and other agencies.   A few have also been released in New Mexico, where I found the juvenile male in the photos below at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge.   This individual was extremely tolerant of people.   I removed its leg bands via Photoshop in these images.

  • Canon 1D3, 500 mm f4 IS lens plus 2X converter, some with both 1.4X and 2X converters (2007, 2009)