DNR OFFICIAL BANDS PEREGRINE FALCON BROOD ON BLP STACK
Four falcon chicks banded at Harbor Island power plant- Article from the
Grand Haven Tribune – Alex Doty
State wildlife biologist Nik Kalejs, joined by Board of Light & Power employees Matt McKee and Mike Kilebrew, climbed 240 feet up the J.B. Sims Generating Station chimney on Harbor Island to band this year’s peregrine falcon brood.
Four peregrine falcon chicks were banded Wednesday morning at the Sims plant — two males and two females.
The BLP nest site has produced 42 chicks since the first pair of wild peregrine falcons began nesting on the chimney 16 years ago.
Peregrine falcons have produced chicks at the BLP’s nest site each spring beginning in 2001 through 2013, and again last spring. The Grand Haven site has produced and banded 25 females and 17 males. “The male is from the 2004 banding,” Kalejs said of the breeding pair. “That’s virtually unheard of.”
Peregrine falcons were listed as an endangered species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1970, after their Midwest population was eliminated in the mid-1960s due to problems with the pesticide DDT. In 1999, following extensive restoration efforts, the peregrine was removed from the federally endangered species list, but it remains on the Michigan endangered species list.
Michigan Department of Natural Resources Peregrine Falcon page
Kalejs noted that there was one casualty during Wednesday’s banding session, when a young chick fell from the nesting box and landed on the roof below.
“Unfortunately, one of them got overly rambunctious,” he said.
According to Kalejs, although the survival rate among young peregrine chicks is about 50 percent, the efforts to bring them back have been successful.
“Enough of them make it that we’ve seen a tremendous comeback,” he said. “This will be eight that I’ve banded (in 2017). We ended up not doing any in Grand Rapids for various reasons.”
Thanks to Matt McKee and Mike Killebrew who helped band the chicks. Matt wore a Go Pro while climbing and banding the chicks. The video was edited by Steve Atterton, SOS Photoparty watch a Short video by Steve Atterton of the Falcon Banding