What is the Difference Between Osprey and Falcons?

A falcon and an osprey may look similar, but in fact they are quite different.

Falcons can famously fly at 240 mph while osprey can go 80 mph. Osprey have long tails. They each use different hunting tactics. Falcons are bigger in size and weight. Falcons are everywhere but Osprey are only near waterways so it can hunt for fish.

A falcon is a kind of bird of prey that is classified under the genus falco which contains several species of these raptor birds. They are distinguished by their broad wings and powerful beaks, which are suited to the way these birds hunt, by fiercely clawing and then ripping the flesh of their prey.

When completely grown, falcons normally travel at high speeds and may change directions quickly due to their tapered and narrow wings. Although the young falcons’ longer flight feathers are characteristic of any other flying bird, it enables them to quickly acquire superior prey hunting skills that will prepare them for successful hunting when they mature.

Falcons are renowned for their supersonic flight, and the peregrine falcon is the world’s fastest flying bird and fastest traveling mammal, with a diving speed of 322 kilometers per hour. Other popular falcons include the Lanner, Merlin, gyrfalcon, and hobbies, which are tiny with large, narrow wings. Like in many other birds of prey, falcons have a vision that is more than double that of humans.

The osprey, on the other hand, is a collective name for hawk bird species belonging to the Accipitridae subfamily. There are many genera in that subfamily, including Accipiter, Micronisus, Melierax, and Megatriorchis, the majority of which is Accipiter, which contains the most famous hawk birds.

This genus contains sparrowhawks, goshawks, and the sharp-shinned hawk, among others. Osprey is mostly found in woodlands and is very visual. They chase prey by doing sudden dashes from a concealed perch. They also hunt near the water, where they claw the fish out of the water and feast. These birds are distinguished by their long tails.

Falcons’ beaks are usually angular, allowing them to effortlessly snap their prey’s jaw, while osprey beaks are softer and have a basic curve since they mostly use their talons to snatch and destroy their prey. Falcons, especially the peregrine falcon, are extremely quick in flight, while the osprey is much slower and can essentially glide on a descent. Falcons are bigger than osprey, which has narrower wings than falcons.



What exactly is a falcon?

Falcon belongs to the family Falconidae family; these diurnal birds of prey have long, pointed wings for rapid, strong flight. The name is limited to the genus Falco, which contains more than 35 animals. Falcons are seen almost anywhere. They vary in scale from approximately 15 cm (6 inches) in length for falconets (Microhierax) to approximately 60 cm (24 inches) for the Arctic gyrfalcon. Female falcons are bigger and bolder than male falcons. Falcons have plumes called “flags” on their legs and a notch in their beaks that develops into a “tooth” in the genus Falco.

Falcons often breed in tree cavities or on natural ledges on cliffs. The eggs are normally four to five in number and are buffy white with reddish-brown speckles and blotches. The incubation period is about 28 or 35 days, and the young are cared for up to 35 days in the nest.

Falcons fly quickly and directly, with their wings rapidly scratching into the air. Certain falcons are used to hovering when searching the landscape for food.



What exactly is an Osprey?

Osprey (Pandion haliaetus), also known as the fish hawk, is a huge, long-winged bird that measures approximately 65 centimeters (26 inches) in length and lives along seacoasts and greater inland waterways, where it fishes. It is brown on top and white on the bottom, with a little white on the head.

To fish, an osprey flies across the water. It hovers over its prey and then dives feet first into the water to catch a fish in its large, curved talons. The bird takes its prey to a favorite perch using a hold secured by sharp spicules on the underside of the toes. Occasionally, after a meal, the osprey flies low over the sea, dragging its feet to wash them.

The osprey’s vast breeding range encompasses all continents, like South America (where it is seen in large numbers throughout the winter) and Antarctica. After 1947, the North American population suffered a significant decrease due to the eggshell-thinning from the impact of DDT residues. However, because of the pesticide’s prohibition in 1972, they regain their population. By 1910, the osprey has been eradicated from the British Isles. However, it reappeared as a prolific breeding population in the 1950s and is now strongly rooted in Scotland.

Both falcons and osprey are amazing animals to see in action. However, they are built differently because their hunting tactics are different. The falcon’s strength is in their beaks for shearing the prey to pieces, while osprey has softer beaks and stronger claws for grasping prey from the water.