Falcons Vs. Ravens

Ravens 2-1
For the second time in a week, we have had reports of skirmishes between Peregrine Falcons and Common Ravens at Laurel Hill County Park in Secaucus. 

Michael Mastropasqua was able to photograph some of the most recent action on Tuesday. (Thanks, Mike!)

He writes:

I took a trip out to Laurel Hill this morning that turned into quite a spectacle. 

Just as I entered the park I noticed a huge group of Ravens and Turkey Vultures encircling and eating what seemed to be small, mostly eaten, muskrat carrion. 

As soon as they saw me, everyone flew off into the trees first, then onward to the hill. 

When I drove out to ballpark to follow them, I witnessed a series of dramatic events…

Rest of Mike's account and more pix follow.Peregrine 2-1

Turkey Vulture-1
The Ravens and Turkey Vultures were circling overhead with the Ravens in particular making quite a ruckus.  It seemed like everyone was fighting everyone. There were seven (that right – 7) Ravens locked into some kind of combat and two Turkey Vultures making their way into the fray as well. 

Then from the north came two Peregrine Falcons that started dive bombing everyone in sight.  This went on for over twenty minutes, right along the top edge of cliff face until everyone eventually disappeared.  What a show! 

Some may ask, are you sure there were seven and not five Ravens?  Yes, 100%!  At one point during the Peregrine attack, they all wound up getting grouped together in trees on the cliff and took to the air at the same time in the same place.  It was easy to count them all. 

Raven Close-up-1 My guess is that the five Laurel Hill Ravens were trying to fight off the two intruders, resulting in the ruckus that attracted the attention of the Peregrines from a ways away – not to mention the Turkey Vultures that got caught up in the whole thing.  All this for a tiny piece of carrion!

 After spending some more time birding the area, I left the park only to find the Ravens and Turkey Vultures on the same carrion they were on when I first entered the park three hours earlier! 

Only this time it was the family of five Ravens and now three (rather than two) Turkey Vultures. 

In the distance, by the residential complex, I could also see another Raven circling overhead.  I don’t think this was the end of it…



3 thoughts on “Falcons Vs. Ravens

  1. Mike Girone

    Wow!! Were both Peregrines adults? The previous skirmish was reported to have a pair of adults plus a juvenile….

  2. Ray Duffy

    The count of 7 is not out of the question. In early May, I had counted 6 fledglings starting to move out of the nest plus the two adults. I have not spotted the full group since that sighting though, the maximum I have seen has been 7.


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