Wildwood Zoo

Meet the Peregrine Falcons at Wildwood Zoo

 peregrine falcons

Wildwood Zoo is proud to have two Peregrine falcons. Both falcons came to us from wildlife rehabilitation facilities in Arizona. We have one female and one male falcon; the female is the larger of the two and has more red color on her chest. Both falcons are wild, non-releasable animals. They were found injured (both right wing fractures), and cannot be returned to the wild because of their injuries. We do not know how old either bird is, and they have not been named yet. The falcons traveled to Wildwood Zoo from Arizona on a plane on Feb 19, 2014. The word “peregrine” means wanderer, and refers to the incredibly long distances Peregrine falcons may travel between nesting and wintering grounds. Though the 2,000 mile trip from their home in Arizona to Wildwood Zoo may seem long, some falcons will fly more than 15,000 miles in a single year!

Peregrine Falcons are an endangered species in Wisconsin.  They were nearly extirpated in the 1960s due to pesticide contamination.  They have since made a dramatic comeback and hopefully it is only a matter of time before they are removed from the endangered species list. 

Peregrine falcons are about the size of a crow and are especially known for their speed and power.  Peregrines can reach speeds of 200 miles per hour when diving to kill prey.  Typically, the speed of this “stoop” will knock the prey to the ground.  Peregrines used to be called “duck hawks” because a common prey item was ducks.

Today, peregrines are becoming more common in urban areas and will feed on pigeons, starlings, and any other bird they can find.

Peregrine Falcon Range in North America
map peregrine falcon
For more information, please visit the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources

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