BUFFALO, N.Y. – Bird lovers can exhale.
Yankee, the male peregrine falcon nesting at South Campus, has
found a new mate. What’s more, the female – bird
enthusiasts named her “Dixie” – has produced four
“The University at Buffalo is delighted that Yankee has
found a new partner,” said Ryan McPherson, UB’s chief
sustainability officer. “These falcons and their offspring
will allow UB to continue to support state wildlife officials in
their effort to rebuild New York’s peregrine
The pairing ends weeks of speculation about the fate of Yankee
who along with a previous mate named BB became celebrities of sort
after UB officials in 2010 installed a live video feed of their
nest atop MacKay Tower.
Last month, state Department of Environmental Conservation
biologists placed BB in a permanent care facility after she
exhibited unusually aggressive behavior by repeatedly swooping down
on people on and near the South Campus. At the time, biologists
predicted Yankee would find a new mate or be displaced by another
pair of peregrine falcons.
Dixie arrived after BB’s departure and laid her first egg
April 3. Three eggs followed. They are expected to start hatching
around May 12. Followers of the birds can watch the action via live
stream at www.buffalo.edu/falconcam.
While Dixie has not displayed the aggressive behavior that BB
did, McPherson nonetheless advised people on and near the South
Campus to use caution when going on rooftops or walking near the
tower. Peregrine falcons – protective by nature, especially
when caring for eggs and fledglings – are known to swoop down
on people but seldom cause injury.
Threatened by pesticides, peregrine falcons were considered an
endangered species by the federal government until 1999 when
recovery efforts prompted their removal from the list. Because they
are still listed as endangered in New York, the state and partners
such as UB are working to boost their numbers. Since 2010, 15
fledglings have hatched at UB.