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Baby falcons to be named next week

The three baby peregrine falcons hatched this month at Evanston Public Library downtown will be banded for identification by representatives of the Field Museum of Natural History at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, May 26.

The three baby peregrine falcons hatched this month at Evanston Public Library downtown will be banded for identification by representatives of the Field Museum of Natural History at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, May 26.

Feeding time in the falcon nursery as seen on the library’s webcam.

The event, on the third floor of the library at 1703 Orrington Ave., is open to the public.

It’s the seventh year in a row that a pair of falcons have raised their offspring on an outdoor ledge atop the Church Street facade of the library. The nest isn’t directly visible from either inside or outside the building, so the library has set up a webcam which transmits pictures of the nest and its inhabitants every couple of minutes.

It is also a tradition to name the babies at the time of banding, once they have been examined and their gender determined. Inspiration for names in the past have included authors Dashiell Hammett and Rebecca West, environmentalists Aldo Leopold and May Theilgaard Watts, and former Evanston Public Library Director Neal Ney.

“I’m thrilled that the Library is home to seven generations of peregrine falcons, the fastest creatures on earth,” said Paul Gottschalk, administrative services manager.  Gottschalk has been keeping an eagle eye on the birds since they first arrived, even helping out with feeding the babies in the first year when the mother falcon broke her wing and could not hunt on their behalf.

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