The falcons are back! Ameren Missouri, along with the World Bird Sanctuary (WBS) and the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC), are once again partnering to bring a live bird’s eye view of nesting Peregrine falcons from 160 feet above Ameren Missouri’s Sioux Energy Center. The female falcon has just laid her first egg and is busy preparing for the arrival of the chicks, expected in about 30 days.
All of our co-workers at Sioux Energy Center, and across Ameren Missouri, take a great amount of pride in being environmental stewards and providing a safe space for the falcons' return year after year. The ongoing interest in the lives of these formidable hunters is reflected in the number of viewers who watch the live camera feed. In 2016, the live stream was viewed tens of thousands of times and peaked in early May when the chicks hatched.
Over the past five seasons, bird lovers have been able to watch an adult pair of falcons raise 19 falcon chicks. Both the male and female incubate the eggs. The chicks will begin to fly about 42 days after hatching but remain dependent on their parents to learn how to hunt for several more weeks.
“Waiting for eggs to hatch is one of the most exciting parts of watching a nest,” according to Sarah Kendrick, State Ornithologist at the Missouri Department of Conservation. “Peregrines were once federally endangered and are still state endangered. Through a number of efforts, including partnerships such as this one with Ameren Missouri and the World Bird Sanctuary, their numbers are rebounding. Also, providing Missourians the opportunity to watch these magnificent birds up close is a great way to spread awareness of conservation efforts for this and other threatened species."
Peregrine falcons also nest at Ameren Missouri's Labadie and Rush Island energy centers.
The Falcon Cam is live from 7 a.m. until 8 pm. (CDT) seven days a week at www.AmerenMissouri.com/FalconWatch
until nesting activity is complete and the young chicks have left the nest.
• The female Peregrine returns for her third spring at Sioux Energy Center. She hatched in 2004 and was banded outside of her nest on a cliff in Palisade Head State Park in Lake County, Minnesota. The male falcon hatched in 2004 as part of an Associated Electric Cooperative Inc. employee-led restoration effort in New Madrid, Missouri.
• Female Peregrines weigh on average 2 lbs., 4 ounces with a 40-inch average wingspan (wing tip-to-tip). Males weigh about 1 lb., 6 ounces with a 30-inch average wingspan.
• Egg incubation time is approximately 30 days.
• The first glimpses of the hatching chicks usually occur in late April.
• When hunting, Peregrines attack from above and dive down on their prey at speeds well over 200 miles an hour, making them the fastest animals on earth.