High above CTV Kitchener, peregrine falcons find a home
Published Thursday, May 30, 2013 3:32PM EDT
CTV Kitchener has some new neighbours.
Their lifestyle isn’t all that similar to our own, and they can be loud at times, but we’re doing our best to make them feel welcome.
Did we mention that they’re a family of peregrine falcons?
The birds have been nesting in a communications tower above our building on King Street in Kitchener for the past few weeks.
They’ve been raising their three children and occasionally leaving special presents splashed on our vehicles.
But we know it’s all in good fun, and that’s why representatives of the Canadian Peregrine Foundation (CPF) visited CTV Kitchener on Thursday to examine and tag the babies.
“It went almost as planned. Working with wildlife we have a few hiccups, but they’re down safe and sound,” said Mark Nash of the CPF not long after the babies were brought into our studio for a checkup.
A team of experts scaled the tower around noon, grabbing the babies and transporting them down to the ground one at a time.
While some CPF workers remained in the air to keep the parents from missing their children, Nash and others went into our studio to examine the babies.
They were weighed and examined, and for the first time we learned a bit about their identities. Two of the birds are males; the third is female.
Then they were tagged.
Peregrine falcons are considered an at-risk species.
Efforts to bring the peregrine population back up to historical levels have been taking place for about 40 years, and have met with some success.
The falcons are tagged to ensure that they can be tracked no matter where they may end up after leaving the next.
“This is the most effective and inexpensive way to monitor the species,” says Nash.
The tags contain information that is used by government agencies in both Canada and the U.S., allowing the falcons to be tracked the same way a social insurance number helps the Canadian government track the comings and goings of its citizens.
Nash says the birds aren’t historically predisposed to urban areas, but have been seen more and more often in major cities recently.
“They’ve adapted incredibly to the surroundings,” he says.
CTV Kitchener was asked to provide names for the babies.
We settled on Miss Fran and Big Al – nods to our past – for two of them.
The third baby falcon was named Artie by a class of students from King Edward Public School who had showed up to see what all the commotion was about.
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