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The Black Pigeon Hawk in New Mexico

Stanley G. Jewett
Publication Information
4 (July-August)
From Field and Study

The Black Pigeon Hawk in New Mexico.-While William L. Finley and Irene Finley were on a photographic expedition to New Mexico in the winter of 1943-44, they were stationed for some time at the Ghost Ranch near Abiquiu, Rio Arriba County. In early December, 1943, a rathe; heavy snow storm covered the area with a white blanket that lasted several weeks. The natural food supply for the large numbers of wintering juncos and other ground-foraging birds being covered, feeding was resorted to by the ranch owners. The resulting congregation of small birds attracted two or three small hawks that constantly preyed on the smaller birds. On December 26, 1943, one of these predators was shot by a ranch employee and the bird was skinned by Mr. Finley and sent to me for identification. Much to my surprise, it proved to be an adult Black Pigeon Hawk, Falco columbarius suckleyi. Unfortunately, the bird was not sexed at the time of preparation.

The normal range of this bird is the humid coastal belt from southeastern Alaska south rarely to northern California. The only other recorded occurrence of the subspecies anywhere so far to the southeast of its regular range is one reported by Alfred M. Bailey as taken by Lloyd Triplet at Weldona, Morgan County, Colorado, on December 14, 1940 (Condor, 44, 1942:37).-STANLEY G. JEWETT, Portland, Oregon, March 29, 1944. 

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