Ursula the Crested Caracara
Ursula the Crested Caracara was admitted to PRWC on 2/14 with old healed fractures in her right wing most likely due to vehicle impact. She was a juvenile and took a very long time to acclimate to being on display but has settled down well.
Be sure to stop by Ursula’s habitat on your next visit.
Cool Facts about Ursula the Crested Caracara
A common subject of folklore and legends throughout Central and South America, the Crested Caracara is sometimes referred to as the “Mexican eagle.” Although it looks like a long-legged hawk and associates with vultures, the Crested Caracara is actually in the same family as falcons.The oldest recorded Crested Caracara was at least 21 years, 9 months old when it was observed in the wild in 2015 in Florida and identified by it’s band. It had been banded in the same state in 1994.
- Habitat: Open country, including pastureland, cultivated areas and semi-desert, both arid and moist habitats but more commonly in the former
- Food: Insects; small and occasionally large vertebrates, including fish, reptiles, amphibians, birds, and mammals; eggs; and carrion of all types
- Nest Placement: Trees
- Behavior: Soaring
- Conservation: Crested Caracara populations increased between 1966 and 2015, according to the North American Breeding Bird Survey. Partners in Flight estimates a global breeding population of 2 million, with 5% living in the U.S., and 28% in Mexico. The species rates an 8 out of 20 on the Continental Concern Score. Crested Caracara is not on the 2016 State of North America’s Birds’ Watch List. The recent U.S. increase in populations is a turnaround from historical declines. A subspecies, the Audubon’s Crested Caracara in central Florida, is federally listed as threatened.