Merlins are fierce, energetic Falcons that patrol shorelines and open areas looking for their prey of small birds (and sometimes dragonflies). They fly powerfully, with quick wingbeats, pausing to glide only rarely. They also spend long periods perched in open areas, scanning for prey.
Merlins nest in forested openings, edges, and along rivers across northern North America. They have also begun nesting in towns and cities. During migration and winter, be on the lookout for Merlins in open forests, grasslands, and especially coastal areas with flocks of small songbirds or shorebirds.
The taiga form migrates from far northern breeding grounds to the coastal and southern U.S. and as far south as Ecuador. ~ All About Birds
Croton Point Park, New York
March 2, 2015