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Energy news from Omaha Public Power District


Falcon names have an electric edge

June 15, 2021 | Laura King-Homan | environment, falcons, North Omaha
Four young peregrine falcons in the box at OPPD's North Omaha Station power plant

The four peregrine falcons hatched at OPPD’s North Omaha Station this spring are spreading their wings both literally and figuratively.

Over the past week the youngsters have shed their downy “fluff” in favor of their adult feathers. And they are getting braver about exploring their surroundings. At any point during the day, you can see them waddling along the walkway and safely stretching their wings.

On June 11, their names were made official. In the week prior, OPPD conducted a naming contest for the falcons. More than 370 votes were cast for the six name groupings. The winning group received 123 votes. And the winners are: Volta, Watt, Ohm and Ampere.

Watt, Ohm and Ampere will be assigned to the three male falcons, while Volta will be assigned to the female.

The young peregrine falcons are getting more and more confident, pulling food from their mother, Clark’s, mouth and playing tug of war with dinner. The young birds still remain close to the nest and aren’t quite to the point where they can hunt for themselves. Parents Lewis and Clark are still helping with that.

Moving on, moving out

A local falcon expert recently banded and weighed the birds. The bands contain specific colors, blue for the female and red for the males, and a number and letter combination. Now that they have names, those will be recorded with the letter/number combination.

That way, peregrine falcon enthusiasts can track their activities should they show up on a webcam in the future. That’s how Lewis and Clark were first identified. The pair was born at the state capitol in Lincoln.

The four young falcons will continue to master their flying and hunting skills for the next few weeks. Eventually, they will leave the box that has been home since early in May.

Their parents will leave the box, too, and head south for warmer climates as fall and winter approach. But next spring, the pair will hopefully return to the OPPD box and continue to grow their family with another clutch of chicks.

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About Laura King-Homan

Laura King-Homan is the supervisor, Brand and Communication Operations, at Omaha Public Power District. She has nearly 20 years of print journalism and design experience, including the Omaha World-Herald.

View all posts by Laura King-Homan >

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