Monday, December 10, 2012

Juvenile Peregrine Detours

The day after Thanksgiving an unbanded juvenile peregrine migrating through Central Ohio took a little detour.  As the falcon chased prey on the roof of Vet's Memorial in downtown Columbus, it “zigged” when it should have “zagged” and ended up unable to fly. The falcon was admitted to the Ohio Wildlife Center with a suspected fractured coracoid.  Luckily, these "collarbone" type injuries usually heal nicely.  In less than 2 weeks of "layover" time on its journey it was determined that the injury had indeed healed, the bird's flight was excellent and it was ready to be released to continue on its way. 
The peregrine (a feisty female weighing 920 g) was given a second chance at survival when it was released by OWC staff on Thursday, December 6 west of Columbus.  The bird launched well, found an updraft, soared for several minutes then headed out of sight to the east/northeast.

Barbara Ray of the Ohio Wildlife Center

Along with the unanticipated stay at OWC, this falcon left the Columbus area with brand new metal leg bands.  Even though we don’t know where this bird originated from, now that it has these colorful markers, it can now be tracked at least from its visit to Central Ohio.  If it is seen again anywhere during its life and the codes reported, that information will add to what is known about peregrine migration and longevity. 

Thanks to all involved at OWC and beyond that had a role in giving this bird a second chance!