BOISE, Idaho –The daily life of a wild Peregrine Falcon family in downtown Boise is once again on view via a webcam now in its seventh season.
The parents are incubating four eggs. Typically, a Peregrine Falcon lays an egg about every other day until she has produced a clutch of three to five eggs.
The nest box is located on a 14th floor ledge of One Capital Center, 10th and Main streets, which mimics the high, steep cliffs the falcons use in the wild. From this lofty perch, the falcons, which strictly eat other birds, can prey on a plentiful supply of pigeons, mourning doves, starlings and other birds. The nest box has been used each spring since 2003.
The web camera is sponsored by The Peregrine Fund, Idaho Department of Fish and Game, and Fiberpipe Data Centers.
After all the eggs are laid, both the male and female will incubate them for about a month. After the eggs hatch, the chicks will remain in the nest and be cared for by both parents for six to seven weeks before taking their first flight. The young birds stay in the downtown area for several more weeks to hone their flying and hunting skills under the watchful eyes of their parents before becoming independent.
Once an endangered species, the Peregrine Falcon was restored through the release of captive-bred young by The Peregrine Fund. The population had been decimated by DDT, a pesticide that thinned the eggshells of many types of raptors, including the Bald Eagle. The Peregrine Falcon was removed from the Endangered Species List in 1999 but population numbers continue to be monitored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and individual states.
The Peregrine Falcon was removed from Idaho’s list of endangered species in 2009 on the 10th anniversary of the federal delisting. Like all birds of prey, the falcons remain fully protected by state and federal law.
Peregrine Falcons were essentially gone from Idaho by 1974. Starting in 1982, captive-bred falcons were released into the wild in Idaho and nearby states. Eight falcons were released in downtown Boise in 1988 and 1989. Today, there are about two dozen breeding pairs scattered around the state.
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