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In 1998, Amelia Earhart and Father Henny made history by becoming the first pair of breeding peregrine falcons to establish a nest site in a "wild" (versus urban) setting in southern Ontario in over 50 years.  Their nest was on a ledge on the Canadian side of the Niagara River gorge, just downstream from the Horseshoe Falls.

In 1999, they nested again, but not at the same location.  Some reports suggest they may have nested on Goat Island (between the American and Canadian Falls) but this has not been confirmed.

Again in 2000 there was a nest, and this time it was confirmed to be on a rocky ledge of Goat Island, roughly midway between the American and Horseshoe Falls. The spring of 2001 was again quiet, but by the end of June it was known that they had nested once more on Goat Island, as they did again in 2002.


Please help us keep track of the peregrines!  We welcome your observations of this pair (or any other peregrines) by email 

Niagara Falls Nest Site Reports:

Sunday May 23, 2007
The Postmaster reports:
We have received updated news about the prospect of peregrine nesting on the Canadian side of Niagara Falls that would suggest that the Niagara Falls peregrines are once again nesting on the Canadian side of the gorge. Information has been reported that a viewer from Goats Island on the USA site has spotted a active peregrine nesting at the old hydro electric plant. While yet unconfirmed, the report indicates that the peregrine eyrie has two chicks. They are said to be nesting below the row of windows in the old hydro building that face the US side, in a “hole” in the face of the building.

Sunday July 23, 2006
John Shiposki reports:
This year we have three very active young birds and adults flying around the area on both sides of the border. On the Canadian side they can be found around the table rock area near the horseshoe falls either in the gorge or flying around the trees and hotels in that area. On the American side they have been seen on top of the gorge sitting in trees between the American and horseshoe falls, from there they have been chasing the cormorants and scattering the gulls over the water. I am seeing many close flybys on both sides, quite a few of tourist are getting a good look at them but I'm sure most don't know what kind of birds they are seeing.

i have a question for the Canadian Peregrine Foundation, did you read the report about the death of one of the Niagara adult peregrines this past April? it was posted on a birding web site saying a redtail hawk had an encounter with one of the adults, killing the peregrine. if this did happen it would have been the female that was killed as the adult male from the last few years is still with us. If you didn't read the report I have it saved on my computer if you want to read it, i can send it to you.ill be sending you a few photo's hopefully soon with a bit more information on what I had seen, I have been outside a lot lately and haven't had time to go over which pictures to send. I have quite a few to choose from. by the way I didn't see any bands on the adult female in my photos, also this is the same unbanded adult male from 2003.

Tuesday June 27, 2006
Amy Nash reports:
On June 17, approximately 7 p.m. we spotted an adult peregrine chasing seagulls from the Canadian side of the river, just below Horseshoe Falls. It appeared to have a ledge it returned to frequently, although the ledge was out of sight from the walkway above.
This picture was taken when it landed in a tree just below us. No one around us seemed to notice it but we spent at least half an hour taking pictures and tracking it.

Sunday January 22, 2006
John Shiposki reports:
today, 1-22-06 i spotted an adult peregrine sitting in a tree on goat island. the peregrine i photographed today didn't seem to have been banded as i have a good shot of the bird's legs in flight. last Easter Sunday i spotted two adults peregrines using the same tree as today's peregrine, neither of those birds was banded.

(Webmaster's note:) John's photos have been added to the Photo Gallery.

Thursday October 27, 2005
Lachlan Mcdonald reports:
Hi my name is Lachlan Mcdonald and I would like to report two sightings of Peregrine Falcons and some information about another person's sighting. I thought you might like to know that in Niagara Falls Ontario Canada on July 16 2005 I saw an adult Peregrine Falcon fly over the Maid of the Mist ticket area. Since I didn't have a watch on, I could not tell what time it was but I would guess at about 2:00 pm. On July 18th I observed another Peregrine atacking a Turkey Vulture over the Queenston-Leweston Bridge, and on a tour of the Sir Adam Beck NO.2 power plant, the tour guide mentioned that he had seen some Peregrines flying at the top of the gorge a few weeks earlier. So there are definitely still some Peregrines in the area.

Sunday July 24, 2005
John Shiposki reports:
On July 22 i saw three young peregrines flying around terrapin point and the falls. in fact i even spotted a peregrine on the tightrope between the casino and the skylon tower.The adults have been around for quite some time and i'm not sure they even left for the winter as i had heard reports of peregrines seen mating in late winter on goat island. Last year there were two young peregrines seen by me and one adult looks to be same bird that is in the 2003 Niagara photo gallery and also the adult bird I reported seeing last year.

Monday July 18, 2005
Bob Pendergrass reports:
Hi, just wanted to report that I went to Niagra Falls from my home in N.C. (USA) week before last hoping to see one of the natural wonders of the world. I was very fortunate- I got to see two. Late in the day on Tuesday, I got to watch an adult male peregrine trying to lure what appeared to be his recently fledged young away from the ledge just below the crowded walkway near Horshoe falls. They were only about 20 feet below the hundreds of folks there to see the the spectacle of the falls. Only two other people besides my family seemed to notice the birds- a father and son who did know what they were.

I have seen both wild and trained peregrines many times in coastal NC, the mountains of NC, and Virginia. But I have never before been fortunate to see a family interaction near an active eyrie like that before. And I have never been nor expected to be as close to wild birds like that although I did come just about as close to a tundra bird on Hatteras Island in the mid 80s sitting atop a phone pole with no obvios concern for me.

At Niagra, Junior was fluffed up in the "I'm full and content look" while dad was a little upset and did glance up and kak his indignity to the humans above a few times. All in a very spectaclular setting. It was the best part of my visit and I got to share it with my son.

I did a search on Niagra peregrines tonite and learned from your website that at least since 1998 they have been back there.

I thought I might pass this on.

Saturday October 30, 2004
Barb Wright reports:
While visiting the Sir Adam Beck Generating Station near Queenston Heights/Niagara Falls recently, the guide mentioned that they have had a peregrine falcon dining regularly on the local pigeon population over the summer months. I have not seen any recent reports on the Niagara Falls website and thought you might like to know there is still at least one peregrine in the area.

Saturday April 24, 2004
Alan and Linda Dickinson reports:
While staying at the Marriott Courtyard Hotel (Niagara Falls, Canada) on the top floor (Room 1004), we opened the sliding glass door and just to the left on the roof ledge, was a most majestic, poised adult falcon. It was not startled. It stayed there for some time and just after dusk we saw it swoop by the window a couple of times and return to sit again on the edge of the roof. When we re-checked, he was resting in-between the letters on the side of the building.

At around 11:00 a.m this morning, April 25, 2004 we looked, but could not see him.

Monday April 12, 2004
John Shiposki reports:
I just wanted to tell you I saw an adult peregrine on 4-9-04 and again on 4-10-04,spotted in the gorge near terrapin point. 

Monday February 16, 2004
John Shiposki reports:
Hello All. I'm sorry I haven't written this sooner but I hope your readers still would like to see these photos that were taken this spring and summer, June and July 2003.

Sunday July 20, 2003
Mark Nash reports: Breaking news about the Niagara Pair - Pittsburgh has us at the falls! Thanks to the dedicated efforts of Brandon and Eric Holden, we have finally got a positive Id on the nesting adult female in the Niagara gorge this year. The coloured band of the adult nesting female has been identified as a Pennsylvania bird produced at the Gulf tower nest site in Pittsburgh in 2001. She was banded on May 6th/2001 as a female from the Gulf Tower nest. At some point, the previous nesting adult female named "Amelia" from London has obviously been replaced. The adult male is not banded and his origin is unknown.

Sunday July 6, 2003
Brandon and Eric Holden report: We spent the last two mornings here and we've had quite an experience with the Peregrines here. The dull (brown) second year bird at the nest site (we believe is the Female). The Juveniles (as you know) are un-banded, but they are amazing because of how tolerable they are of people. We got within 6 feet of them sometimes as they perched on different ledges right next to the railing and they didn't even move.

The two juveniles spent a lot of time together, practicing chasing each other and grabbing talons. Most of the time they even perched together on the same ledge/branch etc. Today one of the juveniles spent a lot of time practicing its hunting skills on just about every creature in the area. Originally it would chase gulls flying around, and started dive bombing gulls sitting in the water. Swallows and starlings were also chased but the most amazing thing we saw was the Juvenile flying over the road, and into a park where it dove after a Black Squirrel, passing within one inch of its back. If the Juvenile was actually trying to grab it, it could have, but instead he just left one very shocked and surprised squirrel standing in the grass, wondering what had just happened.  Click here for photos.

Wednesday July 2, 2003
Brandon and Innis Holden report: On June 30th, we went down to Niagara Falls (on our bikes). Almost as soon as we got to the falls, I saw a Juvenile Peregrine practicing its hunting skills (made about 10 dives at it) on an unlucky sparrow flying across the gorge. A little while later, I saw the large adult female flying up and down the gorge for about 15 minutes, until we left. During this 15 minutes there were two Juvenile Peregrines sitting on the roof of the old abandoned building down near the falls.

Monday June 24, 2003
John Shiposki reports: Since my last update I have been watching the area around terrapin point for falcon activity and a falcon has been spotted almost every time near the top of the gorge. For the most part all I had seen is the falcons circling around above the cave of the winds with an occasional stoop. I have seen at least two peregrines in the air at the same time. Today has been the first time I have seen something different taking place. It was about 7:00pm while I was answering some questions about the falls from a tourist, when I notice a bird was flying right at us doing a pretty good speed. It turned out to be a peregrine falcon being chased by a red winged blackbird and I wasn’t sure the falcon wasn’t going to fly right into us as it pulled up no more than eight feet in front of us. This wasn’t the adult peregrine I spotted a few weeks ago as it still had the brown colors of a younger bird. It was a good size peregrine not a newly hatched bird. Maybe it was last years young female. Later I noticed the adult peregrine flying around with something in it talons, it kept going near the nest site, landing and then would fly out again still with something in its talons. I saw the other peregrine do the same thing; maybe we have some young chicks.

Sunday June 8, 2003
John Shiposki reports: Today at about 11:45pm at terrapin point an adult peregrine flew by me and then headed over to the Canadian side. I got a good look at the markings around the eye and then noticed the breast feathers were white. A bit later the falcon was spotted landing on top of the gorge wall where the trees start to grow, this area is just above and to the right of where the cave of the winds tunnel is. This is the same area last year that the falcons kept flying to, I also heard the young ones crying from that direction last year. I did spot the falcon about 5 times today; it was taking dives on the birds, including a cormorant which I may have a picture of. I did read the February posting about the sighting in Niagara Falls and the description of where they were when they spotted the bird and it seems to me that they were in the area above where I think the nesting site is.

Saturday May 10, 2003
Larry O'Heron reports:  I have been a falcon watcher for the Rochester NY falcons (Mariah and Kaver) since the spring of 2000. On this day at about 1:30 pm, my wife and I sighted one of the Terrapin Pt falcons. We were standing on the sidewalk just north of Terrapin Pt, Goat Island. I caught sight of two birds over the Canadian side near the Embassy Suites. At that distance it was not possible to make an identification, but they were clearly taking part in a territorial defense. When I located them in my binoculars (15X), I could make out the wing beat pattern of one of the birds as mirroring what I had often seen in the Rochester pair.

The birds were headed generally north towards the Skylon Tower. Just short of the Skylon Tower, I watched the probable falcon execute a roll-over into a near-vertical dive. At this time, I became convinced I had sighted a peregrine falcon. I tracked the bird back to the south, continuing to watch its flight characteristics. As it passed in front of the Embassy Suites again, I lost sight of it against the backdrop.

Tuesday February 25, 2003
Wayne Lemmon reports:  On February  25th my wife and I went for one last time to the falls to take picture because of the fair weather. We stood about half way between the 2 falls and suddenly a falcon like bird flew past at which time we both said it looked like a Peregrine Falcon I had my binoculars and had a very good look at less than 50 ft and although I have never seen one before, live that is, I'm 100 percent certain it was a Peregrine.  Then we saw the female as well and both flew down towards the base just over the behind the falls observation area. We have been birding 12 years now and I am a beta tester for Thayer's birding software. I am very good at identification because of the quiz part of this program. We found on the web that there is a nesting pair in the area. I also read they often stay all year round near the nesting sites. We had seen some sighting reports on your web site with the most recent being August 2002. Just wanted to let you know.

Thursday August 8, 2002
John Shiposki reports:  The three falcons were together again yesterday.  I arrived at 4:30pm and had to wait until 4:32pm to spot them. They were flying overhead and two of them were playing with each other, grabbing each other in mid air.  The other one just flew with them.  They put on a show for about 40 minutes.

Tuesday August 6, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports:  For the first time in two years, some great new pictures for the Niagara Photo Gallery - featuring one of the adults and all three of this year's juveniles, as photographed by John Shiposki earlier this summer.

Friday August 2, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports:  Good news - it appears that there are three juveniles at Niagara Falls this year.  John Shiposki has reported to us seeing one juvenile with a banded adult on June 29, followed by as many as three youngsters together over the following three days, at times attacking the local gulls, and also frequently perching at Terrapin Point on the US side.  One of the three juveniles was visibly smaller than the others, suggesting that there are likely two females and a male.  In mid-July the birds became less regularly visible, but then on July 24, John saw one of the peregrines drop down from the cliff and return with prey in its talons.  The following day he saw all three juveniles together again, hunting - one appeared to get his talons on a gull, but in the end they came up empty this time.  Early evening seems to be a good time to enjoy their activities.

Wednesday July 24, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports:  There have been several reports of peregrine activity at Niagara Falls over the past couple of weeks.  Elaine Kampmueller's sightings on July 12 were the first - she spotted a probable juvenile flying near the gorge wall on the Canadian side, approximately 1/4 mile north of Table Rock.  It flew out into the gorge then back toward the wall.  We have heard second and third-hand reports of others seeing a juvenile in the area recently, but no confirmation yet of more than one at a time - if anyone has seen two ore more juveniles, please let us know by email

Sunday June 2, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports:  It has been nearly a year since the last report was filed on this page. This might imply that there have been no peregrine sightings in the Niagara area since last summer, but that is not the case.  In fact, there were scattered sightings throughout the fall and winter, but usually at a considerable distance, not permitting the observers to identify the age or sex of the bird in question.

This spring, the annual "Great Gorge Mystery" was in full swing again, with all suspecting that the peregrines were nesting once more, but not certain where.  Mark Kandel reported late last week that the nest site has been confirmed on Goat Island by park employee Mike Boyd.  They are on the same ledge they nested on in 2000.  On May 24, Mike Boyd and Wildlife Technician Rick Stevens observed two nest switches and a food drop on this ledge, which would suggest that at least one chick has hatched.  As in the past, it is difficult to see much of the eyrie because of the vegetation which blocks the view.

Friday June 29, 2001
Mark Kandel reports:  There was a nest this year at Niagara Falls after all.  I contacted Cave-of-the-Winds yesterday about banding the cormorants below the falls.  During the call I asked if they had seen the peregrines this year. The response was "sure there's a nest with a chick ready to fly any day now."  I went down today and observed an immature that was already flying. It looked very inexperienced (crash landed in a tree). I saw an adult make a food drop and the immature came in and fed. The workers at Cave-of-the-winds pointed out the nest ledge. If their location is correct, the eyrie was almost directly above the deck at Cave-of the-winds only about 100' away. The tour guides said as of yesterday the chick had not flown. The chick may have fledged late yesterday or early today.

Wednesday January 17, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer comments:  There have been several other reports recently of peregrine activity on the Niagara Peninsula.  Up to 3 peregrines have been seen at Niagara Falls (presumably Henny and Amelia, plus an interloper), and we have also heard of sightings from between Grimsby and St. Catharines.  It promises to be an exciting spring in this area.

For earlier reports, check the Niagara archives.

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