Vermont Fish & Wildlife has reopened cliffs previously closed to hiking and access earlier this spring to protect nesting peregrine falcons.
“The young peregrines have fledged, and nesting data suggest the species had a good year due, in part, to cooperation from hikers and rock climbers during this critical nesting period,” said Fish & Wildlife’s migratory bird biologist John Buck. “Peregrine nesting success is also helped by the nearly 40 volunteers who monitor the nest sites from March to the end of July.”
Preliminary results indicate of the 41 pairs, at least 37 pairs nested, and 27 pairs successfully produced an estimated 50 young. Two new nesting sites were discovered this year, suggesting additional falcon pairs are selecting their territories.
“We appreciate the cooperation of the trail and cliff users,”said Buck. “The success of the peregrine nesting season reflects that this mutual effort was very worthwhile.”
Peregrine falcons were removed from the state’s Threatened and Endangered Species List in 2005. Ongoing cooperation from recreationists and continued monitoring will help ensure peregrine’s future recovery.