Two male peregrine falcons are in a hack box at Rock City, preparing to be released into the wild on Monday around 5:30 a.m., just before sunrise. These birds are brothers from Hastings, Mn, and 41 days old today.
“At the time of their release, they will have spent almost two weeks in the hack box to give them a chance to sharpen their hunting skills,” said Dale Stokes with Wings to Soar. “They will also be tracked with a telemetry device. The falcons typically hang around this area for one to two weeks before they begin migrating towards Central America.
Wings to Soar has led this peregrine release program at Rock City since 2006, when the first peregrines Garnet and Frieda were released (fitting names after Rock City’s founders). Since then, six other peregrines have flown from the hacking site: Rocky, Ted, Zenith, Chatty, Lookout and Fourscore, most of the names chosen by Facebook followers. Once again, Rock City is encouraging its social media followers to help name these two brothers (www.facebook.com/SeeRockCityGardens).
John and Dale Stokes host the Rock City Raptors Birds of Prey Shows every Friday through Sunday during the summer through Labor Day, and return during Rocktoberfest. “Rollergirl” is the name of a peregrine being added to the show starting this weekend, and she is the grandmother of these two new falcons.
The peregrine release program is an ongoing project for Rock City Gardens and is the seventh hacking effort on Lookout Mountain since 1993. Find out more at www.seerockcity.com/birds.