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Do Falcons Migrate?



Falcons DO migrate.

Falcons are majestic birds that live in all areas of the world except Antarctica. These birds are strong fliers and are easily distinguished from other birds due to their large size. Many falcons migrate south during the fall before winter weather sets in.


While falcons are fairly large birds, the males are typically much smaller than females. These loyal birds choose a mate for life and only take another if their mate dies. Falcons lay up to 5 eggs at once, which usually hatch in 30 days. New hatchlings weigh 1.5 ounces at birth but double their body weight within the first week of life. Mortality rates are high for these birds, with just one hatchling out of 10 reaching breeding age. The overall lifespan for falcons is usually no longer than 15 years.


Falcons live in almost every state in the United States. These birds often migrate as far as Mexico and South America in September just before winter sets in. However, some falcons may not migrate as long as there is an adequate supply of food. Falcons that migrate typically return to nesting sites in April or May.


Disease, pesticides, pollution and predators threaten the existence of falcons. Water sources contaminated with pesticides can also kill these birds.



“Species profile: Minnesota DNR.” Minnesota Department of Natural Resources: Minnesota DNR. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2012.

“Falcons – Life Cycle.” PBS: Public Broadcasting Service. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Dec. 2012.

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