Injured falcon returns to wild
Pilbara residents are being encouraged to keep an eye out for grey falcons and report any sightings to the Department of Parks and Wildlife.
There are thought to be about 1000 birds left in the wild Australia-wide.
The falcons are a light grey colour with distinct yellow markings on their face and legs.
Department of Parks and Wildlife Pilbara wildlife officer Chris Roy said to report any sightings of grey falcons so they be can measured, assessed and tracked.
“We’re always looking for them — we take any sightings if we can get them,” he said.
The grey falcon is one of the country’s rarest birds of prey and little is known about their lives.
Mr Roy was called to a veterinary centre in South Hedland this month after a female grey falcon was taken there after being stuck by a vehicle.
The bird was sent to Pilbara Wildlife Carers Association to recover.
“(She was) mainly just stunned by being lightly struck by the vehicle,” Mr Roy said. “They got her feeding and drinking and got her back to the wild pretty quick.”
Mr Roy also alerted Jonny Schoenjahn, who is doing an Australia-wide study on grey falcons.
Mr Schoenjahn measured the bird and attached a GPS transmitter before releasing it back into the wild.
“She hung around in the area outside Port Hedland near the airport, then two days later headed 40km south,” Mr Roy said.
Grey falcons are thought to be endangered because of habitat degradation and attacks from wild dogs, foxes and cats. Mr Roy said grey falcons roosted on the ground, making them an easy target for predators.
Those who spot a grey falcon should contact DPaW with observation details and a photo, if possible.
This female grey falcon was taken to Pilbara Wildlife Carers Association and brought back to health.