From Endangered Species to Urban Bird
West Gallery, October 3 – January 3
Peregrine means “wanderer,” and these falcons nest on every continent except Antarctica. Considered the fastest animal on earth, peregrines live in some of the wildest and most inaccessible places on earth. A rare and magnificent
aerial predator, the peregrine has long been a symbol of all that is wild and free.
Peregrines and humans have shared a history for thousands of years, but after World War II, they suddenly began to disappear from North America and Europe. By the 1960s they seemed to be headed for extinction. By the 1970s, the peregrine became a warning sentinel for environmental contamination. In this case, DDT.
Peregrine Falcon: From Endangered Species to Urban Bird tells the incredible story of the citizens, scientists, and birds that brought these raptors back from the brink of extinction—in an unprecedented turn of events, peregrines were listed and then removed from the U.S. endangered species list within two decades. “With our help, they’re thriving in urban environments that experts thought would never support peregrines and certainly not in the population densities we see today,” said the Bell Museum’s Jennifer Menken. “The peregrines have proven themselves very adaptable to the human environment.”
Presented in cooperation with The U of M Raptor Center, Midwest Peregrine Society, and The Peregrine Fund.