We ask that viewers keep in mind that falcons are wild creatures. Falcon chicks are commonly lost to falls in nature. Statistically, the mortality rate the first year is higher than 50 percent. To help with bandwidth costs, we ask that you close your Internet browser windows when not actively viewing the cams.
We routinely provide falcon updates via Facebook and Twitter.
Peregrine falcons, once an endangered species, continue to recover after the banning of DDT in the 1970s and extensive efforts to reintroduce the birds throughout the eastern United States. Through our falcon cams and our avian protection program, Westar Energy is proud to be a part of this effort and continues to promote the conservation of this species as well as other Norther American raptors.
We installed a new dedicated, front-facing camera. In years past, we borrowed the feed from a security camera.
After several years of successful fledgings, we experienced some unfortunate troubles the past couple years. We did research and made changes to better equip and protect the young birds as they prepare to take their first flights.
Faraday (male) is the first to fledge. His sisters follow over the next couple days.
Thank you to everyone who submitted falcon names. The winners are Joule, Faraday and Meadow.
Three healthy chicks are banded. One male and two females.
Chick #1 arrived on 5/3 at 10:22 p.m..
Chick #2 arrived on 5/4 at 12:12 a.m..
Chick #3 arrived on 5/4 at 2:33 a.m..
Egg #4 arrived on 3/31 at 8:10 a.m..
Egg #3 arrived on 3/29 at 3:50 a.m..
Egg #2 arrived on 3/27 at 7:45 p.m..
Egg #1 arrived on 3/24 at 5:10 p.m..
Our falcon pair was caught mating this morning.
We've had no reports of any injured or killed falcons and we see the chicks and adults routinely, so we believe that the family is still healthy.
The falcons were successfully banded this afternoon. We have two females and two males. All appear to be in good health and did very well throughout the identification and banding process.
The falcon banding is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, June 1. It was originally scheduled for Monday, May 27.
Three young hatch. The first at 3:33 p.m. Second at 5:02 p.m. Third at 5:21 p.m.. Fourth egg hatches at 5:38 a.m. on May 10.
Egg #4 arrived on 4/5 in the early morning hours.
Egg #3 arrived on 4/2 at 8:50 p.m..
Egg #2 arrived on 3/31 at 12:50 p.m..
Egg #1 arrived on 3/29 at 3:10 a.m..
We have confirmed that our falcon couple is Nemaha (female) and Boreas (male), the same falcon couple as the previous two years.
We’re sorry to report that after a few flight attempts off our downtown Topeka rooftop, our young falcon, Edison, has been found deceased on the rooftop. It appears that after an unsuccessful flight attempt, he had a mishap that resulted in a neck injury that was fatal. Thank you to everyone who took the time to watch our falcons' progress this spring, submit and vote on your favorite falcon names and email us your feedback. Your interest and support of the falcons is heartwarming.
About 10:45 a.m. Saturday, June 16, our male falcon chick left the nest box. He spent the morning running around the Westar building ledge. We had no sightings shortly after his departure but are confident that he spent some time testing his wings in downtown Topeka. Mom and dad will continue to help feed the chick and show him around until he is able to fend for himself. The winning falcon name of Edison was submitted by several watchers and was voted on the most times (40 percent of the vote).
We’re sorry to report that this morning one of our falcon chicks took a fatal fall from the nest box. Even though the Peregrine Project has approved our current nest box design, we’re convinced that changes can be made to hopefully lessen the chance of this happening in the future. We’ll make the changes after this falcon season. We’ll continue to get the best advice we can and make adjustments to give our birds their best chance for survival.
Two falcon chicks were successfully banded at 1:00 p.m.. today. Both falcons are believed to be males.
First egg hatches at 5:45 p.m., May 6. Second egg hatches at 9:45 a.m., May 7.
Egg #4 arrived on 4/6 at 6:00 a.m.
Egg #3 arrived on 4/3 at 9:13 a.m.
Egg #2 arrived on 3/31 in the early morning hours.
Egg #1 arrived on 3/29 at 6:33 a.m..
We have confirmed that our falcon couple is Nemaha (female) and Boreas (male), the same falcon couple as last year.
We've received updated information on what happened to our oldest male chick that fell out of the nest box. The incident actually happened early in the morning on June 1, not the night before as we first believed. This is the report as viewed from the cam 1 security camera. An adult (pretty sure the female) landed on the box's perch with a bird to feed the chicks. While she was transferring it from her feet to her beak so she could hop into the nest box, the hungry baby hopped up close to the edge of the box. The male flew by as the female was trying to transfer the bird. The chick hopped to the box's lip to get closer to the food and lost its balance. The female hopped into the box as the chick lost its grip and fell. When the chicks leave this year, we'll make modifications to the box to make it tougher for this to happen in the future.
We have sad news to report. One of our male falcon chicks has died. The chick apparently jumped from the box yesterday between about 8 and 9 p.m. and didn’t survive the 10-story fall. When it was banded on Monday, its condition was good, and we’re unsure as to what caused it to jump out of the box. The most dangerous period for peregrines is from hatching until the falcons are a year old. We’ll continue to keep you updated on the remaining male and female chicks. The naming contest will continue as originally designed. Many thanks to those who have already submitted names.
The falcons were banded this morning. There are two males and a female. The birds all appear to be healthy. Photos and video of the banding are below.
Egg #3 arrived on 4/6
Egg #2 arrived on 4/4
Egg #1 arrived on 4/1
For the last couple weeks, downtown Topeka has experienced an increase in overhead vocalization. Hope and Doorly, our falcon couple who've made their home in the nest box on top of our downtown general office since 2004, were ousted by a new peregrine couple. The couple that has claimed the nest box is Boreas, male, born in 2007, and Nemaha, female, born in 2009. Both peregrines were raised at the Nebraska State Capitol. A nest box has been quickly erected at a separate Westar location, the Tecumseh Energy Center, in hopes that Hope and Doorly will recognize the alternative location and make a new home there.