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Discovering Raptors

Raptors frequently evoke admiration because of their power, their eye-catching flight, and their noble bearing. They display a fascinating array of behaviors—some obviously instinctive, others clearly learned. But why do they act as they do? Helen Macdonald, in her memorable book H is for Hawk, demonstrates one way to get inside a raptor’s mind: by keeping one captive. A falconer, as the falcon’s hunting companion, has an unequaled opportunity to observe not only the raptor’s behavior but also that of other birds of prey that are drawn to it with various intentions. For example, why would a Peregrine court a falcon of a different species a sixth of its own size? Or a Cooper’s Hawk try four different strategies to reach a caged pigeon? Why do Merlins sometimes accompany harriers? The answers to these and many other questions are often surprising. Raptors have varied personalities, too, and different physical capabilities, all of which will be explored in this evening program, along with pointers for identification. Hans Peeters, Professor of Biology, Zoology, and Ecology, Emeritus, Chabot College; Author; Artist
Hans Peeters is an ornithologist, painter, falconer, and naturalist. He completed his graduate studies at UC Berkeley, then taught biology, zoology, and ecology for thirty-seven years. He is the author of Mammals of California (2004), Raptors of California(2005), and Owls of California and the West (2007), as well as American Hawking (1970) and a number of scientific papers. He has contributed illustrations for several well-known field guides to North American birds and Birds of South Asia, The Ripley Guide. His paintings have been exhibited in museums worldwide and have been used for postage stamps promoting conservation.View Map Location:



Wednesday, February 10, 2016. 07:30PM


CEMEX Auditorium, Knight Management Center


Continuing Studies




Free; no advance registration is required.