Merlin is an aggressive falcon that feeds along Assateague Island
for songbirds and other prey. This raptor will sometimes birdwatch
from a high tree and then ambush its quarry. The Merlin often approaches
it's prey through disguising itself by imitating the flight characteristics
of a pigeon or woodpecker.
adult Merlin has a wingspread of 23"and is slightly larger than
its cousin the American Kestrel. They have been known to use a tree
cavity for nesting (like a Kestrel) or take over an abandoned nest.
A female Merlin lays 3-5 rust colored eggs that have brown spots.
The Merlin is very territorial and will harass other raptors that
trespass even if the other bird of prey is much larger in size.