Two peregrine falcon chicks found in an unsuitable nesting place in Queens were relocated to the top of the Brooklyn tower of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge where they were welcomed into the nest by a mother falcon already caring for three new chicks of her own.
“The mother took in the adopted chicks without question and has been feeding them and watching over them as if they were always part of her brood,” said Verrazano Narrows General Manager Daniel DeCrescenzo. “It’s truly nature at its best.”
Chris Nadareski, a wildlife biologist with the city Department of Environmental Protection, who coordinates the city peregrine falcon program in cooperation with the State Department of Environmental Conservation, said the relocation was necessary because the chicks would have had trouble safely leaving the nest area while learning how to fly.
The two adopted chicks were moved on May 28, and a few days later, the two male and three female chicks were one big happy family.
This means that MTA Bridges and Tunnels, in addition to the Verrazano’s two male and three female chicks, is home to a total of 11 new peregrine falcons this year.
Four females hatched at Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge in Queens and two more, a boy and a girl, hatched atop the Bronx tower at the Throgs Neck Bridge.
The Verrazano chicks have the most sweeping view of New York Bay from their perch 693 feet above the water at the Brooklyn tower.
The Throgs Neck birds are 360 feet up on the Bronx tower, and the new falcons at the Marine Parkway Bridge have the most unusual nest; inside an old World War II gun turret 215 feet above the water on the Rockaway side of the bridge.