A while back ago several major cities became the makeshift nesting grounds for peregrine falcon reintroduction programs. The peregrines where “hacked” (raised until they showed signs of starting to fly) from a box on top of a tall downtown building. Once the birds began stretching their wings the boxes where opened and the birds ambled out. The programs were successful and now there are peregrine falcons calling 43 different cities home just in Ohio!
Each year, the young birds are banded with a small metal bracelet like band on their leg. This helps biologists track the movements of the birds from one city to another.
Learn more about Ohio’s peregrine falcons here http://ohiodnr.com/wildlife/dow/falcons/Default.aspx, http://www.in.gov/dnr/fishwild/3365.htm, http://fw.ky.gov/peregrinefalconsinky.asp, and http://ecos.fws.gov/speciesProfile/profile/speciesProfile.action?spcode=B01H.
You can also walk around downtown and see if you can spot the birds flying to and from their nest.
One year, I was rewarded with seeing a peregrine falcon pluck a big brown bat right out of the sky in downtown Dayton, Ohio. The adult birds nested in the old Lazarus building and would fly around the nooks and crannies of the older buildings to rustle up lunch. We were on the top level of the parking garage caddy-corner to the nesting site. After the adult female (Mercury’s mate pre-Snowball and I can’t recall the name for the life of me) dive bombed the bat, she swooped around tossing the bat to the young clamouring along the edge of the Lazarus building. One caught it under his foot and then began trying to hop away from its siblings and eat the bat at the same time. Awkward to say the least.
And, nothing like the graceful and powerful adults they would soon become.