A camera focused on the nest on the ledge outside the 28th floor of the Woodmen Tower shows five eggs from Omaha's only pair of nesting Peregrine falcons. The first egg was laid on April 1, the other four following the week of April 1-9. To celebrate Earth Day (April 22, 2013), which is focused on renewing our commitment to the environment and to wildlife, Woodmen of the World encourages the public to get involved with the Woodmen Tower falcons by:
5 Ways to Celebrate Earth Day with the Falcons:
- To celebrate the 25th anniversary of the Woodmen Tower Falcons, Woodmen of the World is holding a “What Does Wildlife Conservation Mean to You?” essay contest, which invites Omaha, NE metro-area students to write a 250-word essay about their perspective on wildlife conservation. The winner, who must attend an Omaha, NE metro-area school, will receive a visit to their classroom by Raptor Recovery Nebraska and their educational falcon. He or she will also be invited to Woodmen of the World’s banding ceremony, typically held in June. (Essay Contest Sheet)
- Share your creativity by coloring Hera, Woodmen of the World’s Peregrine Falcon. We will display these at our 2013 Falcon Banding! (Coloring Sheet)
- How much do you know about Peregrine Falcons? Go on an online Peregrine Falcon Scavenger Hunt. (Scavenger Hunt Sheet Questions)
- Visit the Woodmen of the World Company Store to purchase the 25 Years Falcon Anniversary T-shirt! Proceeds will go to Raptor Recovery Nebraska to support the rehabilitation of orphaned or injured raptors.
- Watch the falcons, which were once-endangered, incubate and hatch their young online via the live FalconCam. The FalconCam, newly equipped with a microphone provides a birds-eye view from the 28th floor of the Woodmen Tower in downtown Omaha.
In 25 years, the Peregrine Falcons, once considered endangered, have successfully adapted to their urban habitat on the 28th floor of Woodmen Tower, and have multiplied well beyond the expectations of local raptor enthusiasts. Woodmen Tower falcon offspring have been spotted as far away as South America and the falcons, who once visited for only a few months at a time, now live atop the Woodmen Tower year-round, although it is difficult to say if that behavior is based on preference or the necessity to guard their hotly-contested hunting ground. Peregrine falcons will fight to the death to protect their territory.
Keep a look out for the falcons in downtown Omaha; you can occasionally see them performing their aerial acrobats. Diving at speeds of more than 180 miles per hour, they knock out unsuspecting pigeons. You can often see bits of bird carcasses in the parking lot and on the sidewalks around the building.
The public can find out more about the 25th anniversary celebration and the new falcon chicks at the web site at falcons.woodmen.org. They can also follow the Woodmen Falcons through their Twitter account @WoodmenFalcons.