Two New Peregrine Falcons To Be Released From Rock City

Wednesday, July 16, 2014
The two peregrine falcons yet to be named – check out Rock City’s Facebook page to suggest names at www.facebook.com/SeeRockCityGardens
The two peregrine falcons yet to be named – check out Rock City’s Facebook page to suggest names at www.facebook.com/SeeRockCityGardens

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.


Wildlife Should Remain Wild

Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) officials notice an increase in illegal removal of wildlife each spring. Not only is taking wildlife from nature unlawful, it can have harmful effects on humans, pets and overall wildlife populations. Animals most often taken include squirrels, fawns, turtles and even baby raccoons. Sometimes the intent is to care for a seemingly abandoned ... (click for more)

TVA’s Dam Visitor Centers Open April 1

TVA’s dams make certain that the Tennessee Valley is ready to deal with whatever April showers may come. And three of its most remarkable dams are kicking off the month by opening the doors of staffed visitors centers, which illuminate the agency’s history, offer information about how TVA operates its electric system and explain how the river and its tributaries are managed for ... (click for more)

State Says "Beef" Between 2 Bloods Gangs Started Over A Female And Led Eventually To Shootings At College Hill Courts

The state presented testimony on Monday about a feud between two Bloods gangs that allegedly eventually led to a 16-year-old shooting up a unit at College Hill Courts - killing one woman, injuring another, leaving a child paralyzed and injuring a member of the other Bloods gang. A city police gang expert said the bitter rift between the Athens Park Bloods based on the Southside ... (click for more)

Walker County To Raise Water, Sewer Rates To Improve Aging Infrastructure

 The board of directors for the Walker County Water & Sewerage Authority (WCWSA) has granted approval for the utility to move forward with a base rate increase to address aging infrastructure concerns.   Starting this summer, WCWSA will begin replacing older galvanized pipe. These older water mains will be upgraded from two-inch galvanized pipe to six-inch high-pressure ... (click for more)

Slaxxon Regret - And Response

Back in the seventies my three oldest brothers had a buddy named Steve Slack. “Slack” was a star soccer player at Baylor and he grew up on Lookout Mountain, which is where I grew up. He and Jimmy, Henry and Bill went to the University of Virginia where they were roommates in an old, beat up house that was painted pink. Naturally, the place became known as the “Pink Palace” but lest ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Oh Yes, I Loved West

One of my most beloved friends died early Saturday morning at the age of 67. Then again, West Oehmig’s only brother – King – died a couple of years ago at 63 so it wasn’t by happenstance I remembered Abraham Lincoln’s famous line: “In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count, it’s the life in your years.” Here are two brothers who lived larger than any other pair I can ... (click for more)