MDC and partners provide unique peek at falcon nest in KC

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Kansas City
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Kansas City, Mo. – It’s two eggs thus far and counting for peregrine falcon enthusiasts watching a nest box at the Country Club Plaza, thanks to a partnership providing a live web camera monitoring the nest. The nest box is on a ledge at the American Century Investments building. Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) staff will observe the nest as part of a falcon re-introduction program that began in 1991 in Kansas City.

The Plaza falcons have produced two eggs thus far with the first egg being laid March 23, said Joe DeBold, MDC urban wildlife biologist. Falcon cams enable people to watch the nest on computers and other digital devices via live feed from the high definition camera. Wildlife watchers will be able to see the parents tend the eggs. If they catch the falcon show at the right time, they can see the eggs hatch and afterward watch tiny young in the nest. Parents will bring the chicks food and shelter them. But they grow quickly and by early summer the young falcons will be flying, soon to leave the nest.

MDC first re-introduced peregrine falcons in 1991 at the Commerce Tower building in downtown Kansas City. A nest box there is still in place. It’s not unusual for people working in office buildings to watch falcons soaring among the skyscrapers or swooping down to catch pigeons to eat.

Peregrine falcons originally nested on high bluffs and cliffs. Their numbers plummeted nationwide after the 1940s when widespread use of contaminants such as the pesticide DDT entered the food chain. DDT caused thin-shelled eggs that often broke under the incubating parent before the young could hatch. Falcons began rebounding in numbers after DDT was banned and conservation agencies began re-introducing them in urban areas where ledges and rooftops on tall buildings provide nesting sites similar to cliffs. Peregrine falcons are listed as an endangered species in Missouri.

Kansas City Power & Light Co. provides nest boxes on smokestacks at the Iatan, Hawthorne and Sibley power plants near the Missouri River in the metro area. A web cam link for the nest box at Iatan is expected to be ready for use in the coming weeks.

MDC staff will monitor the nests throughout the spring. They will work with biologists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to band chicks before they fledge or begin flying from the nest.

To see the falcons at the Country Club Plaza location, visit A link is not yet available for the nest box at the Iatan Power Plant.

  For more information on falcons or other watchable wildlife, visit