Friday, Apr. 22, 2011

Peregrine Falcons in Columbus, Ohio

Removed from the federal endangered species list in 1999, peregrine falcons are still threatened in some parts of the U.S., including the Midwest. Now these formidable hunters, which dive for prey at speeds of up to 200 mph, have become a favorite of birdcam operators, in part because the high–altitude–loving birds have taken to manmade nesting boxes that are easy to observe. The Columbus Peregrine FalconCam, run by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, is perched on a 41st–floor window ledge of the Rhodes State Office Tower, and as of mid–April, the female falcon (named Durand) had laid five eggs, which should hatch in May. An accompanying blog lets arm–chair birders catch up on any developments they may have missed. To see more falcon cams around the globe, check out the megasite View Nesting Birds, which links to 82 other scrapes (as falcons' shallow nesting spots are called) from Australia to The Netherlands.