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Peregrine falcon

January 1, 1988

Since 1975, 101 peregrine falcon breeding sites have been documented in Arizona, New Mexico and western Texas. Eyries were found in either riverine or montane canyons, habitats which supported dense and diverse avian prey and provided structural characteristics that may increase prey vulnerability. Approximately 85% of the sites visited each year were occupied. Egg-laying (mid-February to mid-May) typically occurred first in the south and at lower elevations, and later in the north and at higher elevations. Mean productivity of adult pairs (mean =1.55 young/year) was comparable to rates reported for healthy populations. Poor productivity and decreased territorial occupancy in western Texas and southeastern New Mexico occurred in the presence of high levels of environmental DDE. Estimates of the breeding population (141-187 occupied territories) are twice the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) recovery goal for the region; however, the population is not considered recovered. The discrepancy of these assessments stems from the suitable-habitat approach used by the authors vs. the narrower eyrie-based USFWS recovery plan. Recommendations include reevaluation of recovery goals to ensure adequate habitat protection, elimination of regional sources of organochlorine pesticides, delineation of suitable habitat, formulation of habitat management prescriptions, winter habitat studies,continued monitoring of territorial occupancy and productivity, and accountability for sensitive information.

Publication Year 1988
Title Peregrine falcon
Authors R.W. Skaggs, D. H. Ellis, W.G. Hunt, T.H. Johnson
Publication Type Book Chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Series Number 11
Index ID 5211246
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Patuxent Wildlife Research Center