WEBCAM SHOWCASES PEREGRINE
THREE CHICKS BANDED
Three endangered peregrine falcon
chicks born atop a Jersey City skyscraper met their benefactors
today as state wildlife officials banded the chicks and
unveiled the state's new nesting box webcam.
When the pair of city-dwelling falcons
at 101 Hudson St. was first discovered, the state Department
of Environmental Protection's (DEP) Endangered & Nongame
Species Program put a nesting box on the roof, and the pair
produced two young last year. This spring, another brood
hatched, and the webcam was added, with funding provided
by a grant from the Verizon Foundation.
"We're grateful to the Verizon Foundation
for their generous assistance in allowing us to take advantage
of one of the most exciting technological advances of the
21st century which has long-range applications for teaching
students and the general public about wildlife," said DEP
Commissioner Bob Shinn.
"This exciting webcam project will provide
Garden State residents with a rare view of peregrine falcons
and an invaluable lesson on endangered species in New Jer
sey and the important preservation efforts," said Dennis
Bone, president of Verizon New Jersey. "We are pleased to
work with the state of New Jersey on this educational project."
The webcam allows anyone with Internet
access the ability to view the pair's behavior as they care
for the chicks that hatched May 17 atop the LCOR Building.
The peregrines can be viewed through the Division of Fish
& Wildlife website at www.njfishandwildlife.com
or the Conserve Wildlife Foundation website at www.conservewildlifenj.org.
"Now virtually anyone can have a bird's-eye
view of the nest and its inhabitants," added Fish & Wildlife
Division Director Bob McDowell, who also expressed appreciation
to the Conserve Wildlife Foundation, the non-profit organization
that supports the division's Endangered and Nongame Species
Program. The foundation was the recipient of the Verizon
Conserve Wildlife Foundation Executive
Director Linda Tesauro said, "The webcam is an invaluable
educational resource for students and teachers. There is
so much to learn about New Jersey's endangered wildlife,
and we hope this will encourage citizens to take an active
role in the stewardship of rare wildlife."
"LCOR is pleased to have had the opportunity
to work with the New Jersey DEP's Division of Fish and Wildlife
to provide a home for this peregrine falcon family," Executive
Vice President and Principal of LCOR, Inc. Kurt Eichler
said. "When we first developed 101 Hudson Street in 1990,
who would have known that the penthouse suite would become
a nesting spot for a rare and endangered species of birds?
This effort is another example of how development can successfully
co-exist with the natural environment."
As DEP biologists Mark Valent and Kathy
Clark banded the three endangered peregrine chicks for future
monitoring and research purposes, Shinn praised the Endangered
Species Program staff for their innovative conservation
management approach that returned the peregrine falcons
to the Garden State.
Peregrines were brought from Cornell University's
Peregrine program for reintroduction to the Garden State
by the Division of Fish & Wildlife's Endangered and Nongame
Species Program in the 1980s. There are now approximately
16 peregrine pairs in New Jersey. Nesting birds are continuously
monitored, and each year any new offspring are banded by
state biologists. Volunteers check the progress of young
in the nests from a distance. All nesting peregrines in
New Jersey use man-made sites, like tall buildings and bridge
The pair resides at the building, which
is the tallest in the state, year-round. During March, they
began territorial displays in anticipation of the breeding
season. Four eggs were laid in April and hatched in mid-May.
One chick died shortly thereafter. The parents will care
for the young until they fledge (fly) from the nest in mid-summer.
The birds may still be viewed through the webcam after they
fledge since they normally return to the nest site periodically
In addition to the webcam, a monitor display
in the lobby of the building provides employees and visitors
with a "live cam" view of the birds as well as background
on peregrines and DEP's successful efforts to reintroduce
them to New Jersey.
Peregrine falcons became endangered during
the 1960s and 70s from pesticide contamination when DDT
was widely applied to control insects. DDT is a long-lived
poison that accumulates in the food chain and becomes concentrated
in winged predators such as falcons, hawks and eagles causing
eggshell thinning and death. When DDT was banned, these
species rebounded with the help of intense conservation
efforts. For updates on the Peregrine Project, visit the
division's website at www.njfishandwildlife.com