Watch live as peregrine parents nest on St. Croix smokestack

Fastest falcons on Earth are once again incubating eggs 400 feet above the river in Bayport — with a camera providing a peek at their life.

By

/

/

2 minute read

Trading places, May 6, 2019

A pair of peregrine falcons are once again attempting to raise young at a box high up on Xcel Energy’s Allen S. King Plant in Bayport, along the St. Croix.

Starting on April 25, the female bird has laid four eggs. The male and female are taking turns sitting on them while they develop. Chicks usually hatch in late May.

A camera next to the nest gives 24/7 views of life high above the river. View it here.

Nest-watchers who use a forum on Raptor Resource Project’s website provide egg updates and otherwise discuss life for the birds.

Nest boxes are installed on four Xcel towers in the state, at a height of 300 to 600 feet above the ground. Peregrines’ natural hunting strategy is to perch on cliffs and watch for prey below — often ducks and other birds — and then dive at its target.

“Peregrine falcons find the boxes installed on power plant stacks attractive as nesting sites because they offer some of the same features as the high cliffs, which they naturally prefer,” Xcel says.

The King Plant’s nest box is 400 feet above the ground, halfway up the smokestack.

A nest box was first placed on the King Plant in 1990, making it the first such site in the nation. Today, 71 young peregrines have been bred at the site. The birds were nearly wiped out by the use of the pesticide DDT in the 1960s, but were brought back to good population numbers after the chemical was banned.

Last spring, the first peregrine pair to nest at a natural location along the St. Croix since the 1950s was observed north of Stillwater.


Comments

St. Croix 360 offers commenting to support productive discussion. We don’t allow name-calling, personal attacks, or misinformation. This discussion may be heavily moderated and we reserve the right to block nonconstructive comments. Please: Be kind, give others the benefit of the doubt, read the article closely, check your assumptions, and stay curious. Thank you!

“Opinion is really the lowest form of human knowledge. It requires no accountability, no understanding. The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another’s world.” – Bill Bullard

2 responses to “Watch live as peregrine parents nest on St. Croix smokestack”

  1. Moonflower Avatar
    Moonflower

    I’m happy to see this article—but deeply saddened that Seitz didn’t give any mention whatsoever to the life’swork of BOB ANDERSON—whose passion and perseverance made the nest box on the King Plant—oh yeah—and the recovery of the Peregrine Falcon from the brink of extinction—a reality.
    Thank you, Bob. rip

    1. Greg Seitz Avatar

      Thank you, but this wasn’t meant to be a comprehensive article on the history of the peregrine recovery. Very grateful for Mr. Anderson’s work, just have limited time to research and write, really trying to promote the cameras at this time.

REPUBLISHING TERMS

You may republish this article online or in print under our Creative Commons license. You may not edit or shorten the text, you must attribute the article to St. Croix 360 and you must include the author’s name in your republication.

If you have any questions, please email greg@stcroix360.com

License

Creative Commons License Attribution-ShareAlikeCreative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike
Watch live as peregrine parents nest on St. Croix smokestack