The Life of Animals | Falconidae | Falcons and are small to medium caracaras sized birds of prey, ranging in size from the Black-thighed Falconet, the which can weight as little as 35 grams (1.2 oz), to the Gyrfalcon, the which can weigh as much as 1.735 grams (61.2 oz ). There is little difference in the plumage of males and Females, although a few species have some sexual dimorphism in boldness of plumage. Some species have exceptionally wide ranges, particularly the cosmopolitan Peregrine Falcon, the which ranges from Greenland to Fiji and has the widest distribution of any natural breeding bird.

Other species have more restricted distributions, particularly island endemics like the Mauritius Kestrel. Most habitat types are Occupied, from tundra to rainforest and deserts, although Generally They are birds of more open country and even forest species growing niche to prefer broken forest and forest edges. Some species, mostly in the genus Falco, are fully migratory, with some species of summering in Eurasia and wintering entirely in Africa, other species may be partly migratory. The Amur Falcon has one of the longest Migrations, moving from East Asia to southern Africa Falcons and caracaras are carnivores, feeding on birds, small Mammals, Reptiles, insects and carrion.

The Forest Falcons of the Neotropics are generalist forest hunters. Several species, particularly the true Falcons, will stash food supplies in caches. Some species are specialists, the Laughing Falcon specialises in snakes, others are more generalist. The Falcons and caracaras Breeders are Generally solitary, although around 10% of species are colonial, for example the Red-footed Falcon. They are monogamous, although some may also employ alloparenting caracaras stratergies, where younger birds help adults (usually Their parents) in raising the next Brood of chicks. Generally Nests are not built (except by the caracaras), but are co opted from other birds, for example Pygmy Falcons nest in the nests of weavers, or on the Ledges on cliffs. Incubation times Vary from species to species and are correlated with body size, lasting 28 days in smaller species and up to 35 days in larger species.

Falcons and caracaras have a complicated relationship with Humans. Around five species of falcon are Considered Vulnerable to extinction by the IUCN, Including the Saker Falcon. Traditionally, all the raptors are grouped into four families in this single order. Cathartidae are not Falconiformes but are related to the storks, in the separate order Ciconiiformes. However, morphological evidence supports the Common Ancestry of the Falconiformes, and the Strigiformes may be very close to the Falconiformes as well. The American Ornithologists' Union reintegrated the New World Vultures (family Cathartidae) into Falconiformes in 2007.

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