Traverse City Record-Eagle

Michigan

January 3, 2014

Falcon hurt in Detroit gets home at nature center

MARION TOWNSHIP (AP) — A peregrine falcon found injured in Detroit last year has a new, permanent home at the Howell Conference and Nature Center.

The bird named Allegro had been receiving care at the facility in Livingston County’s Marion Township since April. The initial plan was to eventually release the bird, but the injury was too severe, the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus of Howell reported.

Director Dana DeBenham said the bird hurt its foot, which threatened its survival. It is believed that the falcon crashed into a window near its nesting place on a high-rise near the Detroit River.

“For us, it would be like having an injured finger, but for a falcon, it greatly impacts their ability to target food from the air,” DeBenham said.

Peregrine falcons are listed as an endangered species in Michigan, and Allegro was identified from bands placed on both legs. Peregrine falcons prey almost exclusively on other birds and typically nest on cliff faces or tall structures such as bridges and buildings.

The Howell Conference and Nature Center, which gained U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service approval to make Allegro a permanent resident, is feeding the bird a diet of diced mouse parts. The Howell Conference and Nature Center is the state’s largest care center for birds of prey.

Allegro has bonded with the center’s other peregrine falcon, Rocky, and is expected to become part of the center’s education programs.

“He’s 14, so he is pretty far along in his lifespan,” DeBenham said. “But we’re hoping to have him for a while.”

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Information from: Livingston County Daily Press & Argus, http://www.livingstondaily.com

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