Rock City atop Lookout Mountain, Ga., is continuing its partnership with “Wings to Soar” in an ongoing peregrine falcon restoration project to reestablish the breed to this region.

A pair of siblings, one male and one female hatched on May 2, came to Rock City from a Minnesota breeder, Andy Kramer. At 33 days old upon entering a hack box at Rock City, the birds remained there until June 19, when they were released into the wild.

Just minutes after the hack box was opened, the male bird named Gnomeo flew at 6:31 a.m. The female, Georgia, waited until approximately 2 p.m. to take her first flight. They have both been tracked in the area since then and are doing well.

“It is the male that establishes the nesting territory,” said John Stokes with Wings to Soar. “So if we want peregrines to nest in the area again, we need males to return here. Apparently, there are enough females in the region for the males to recruit. But the state of Georgia also wants us to release some females for different bloodlines.”

The female is equipped with satellite telemetry allowing her movements to be tracked anywhere in the Northern Hemisphere. This is the eighth pair of birds and tenth peregrine release from the hacking site, bringing the total number of birds released to 18 since the project’s inception in 2006.

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