A webcam set up to let viewers watch the spectacle of the northern lights from their living rooms is now offering an extra treat: A rare gyrfalcon, the largest of all falcon species, has taken a liking to the perch directly in front of the camera. It has also taken a liking to checking out the camera itself, giving viewers a particularly great view of that handsome face.
According to Discovery, "In recent days, what appears to be the same falcon has made more than a dozen appearances on explore.org's Northern Lights Camera, which live-streams serene wintertime scenes from the Churchill Northern Studies Center in Manitoba."
Though according to Heidi den Haan, assistant director of the Churchill Northern Studies Centre, the falcon was there before the camera was set up, and because the species is territorial and likes tall perches, it's not surprising that it has stuck around.
Gyrfalcons are incredible hunters, and are often used in falconry. They are found in the tundra of the Northern Hemisphere and typically stay in the far north all year long. Collection of wild falcons for the falconry trade has lead to a decline in the population in parts of Europe, though the North American population seems to be stable. And at least one individual is showing off just how gorgeous this raptor species really is.
The species can range in color, including brown, black, silver and white morphs. The white morphs, such as this individual, are the only predominantly white falcons, so they're unmistakeable.
If you'd like to spot the falcon yourself, keep the webcam on and hopefully he will visit the explore.org webcam again soon.