Merlin (Falco columbarius)
subspecies: Taiga Merlin
Adult: (shown) approximately pigeon size; sexes similar in coloration patterns; the tell-tale "mustache"
and other markings are darker in males than females;
Tail: long, with 3 slate blue bands and wide, white terminal band;
Wings: long, angular with sharp point; underwings are always dark;
Head: slate-blue back and crown; throat patch white and unmarked;
Eye: dark brown with yellowish eye ring.
Immature: similar to adult female;
Back and Wings: dark brown without grayish cast;
Tail: 4 buff colored bands with 1 white terminal band.
Generally found nesting near large (>1 km2
) or locally dense lakes with shoreline habitat comprised of coniferous
trees. Nests in old crow and hawk nests; nearly always in conifer species.
Summer resident in northern 1/3 of state. Rarely present during winter.
Audio recordings donated by John Feith.
Additional bird call recordings available at www.caculo.com/birdsongs