Bat falcon spotted in the US for the first time in history – USA TODAY

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A bat falcon, known to live in Mexico and Central America, was spotted in the U.S. for the first time in history.

The falcon was hanging around at the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge in South Texas, according to a Facebook post from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

“Everyone that can catch a glimpse is looking at this bat falcon right now. This is the first recorded time that a bat falcon has ever been seen in the U.S.!” the post said. 

Bat falcons hunt bats at duck but mainly eat small birds they catch in flight, according to EBird, an online database of bird observations. The birds can weigh 4.8 to 8.5 ounces.

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Last month, the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge posted the bat falcon on their Facebook page and said they believe it’s a juvenile. 

“Judging by the thickness of the tarsus and beak, it seems like a male,” the post said.

Unlike most birds, the bat falcon has a “tooth” on their bill to help them with feeding and cutting the neck of their prey, according to Animalia

Bat falcons are classified as Least Concern on the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List with a population of 500,000 to nearly 5 million. Although their populations are decreasing, likely due to habitat loss. 

Follow reporter Asha Gilbert @Coastalasha. Email: