An Acadia National Park wildlife technician holds a peregrine falcon chick. Eight peregrines hatched and fledged in the park this year. PHOTO COURTESY OF ANP

Falcons fledge, trails reopen

ACADIA NAT’L PARK — Two of the three trails in the park that were closed April 13 to prevent nesting peregrine falcons from being disturbed are now open.

The Precipice Trail and the Orange & Black Path were reopened last Friday. The Jordan Cliffs Trail remains closed because falcons are still nesting nearby.

A total of eight peregrine falcon chicks hatched and fledged in Acadia this year, according to park officials. That includes four chicks raised at Valley Cove cliffs. The chicks there fledged in late June, but the Valley Cove Trail, which has been closed for two years for major repairs, will remain closed for the near future.

This was the first year since 2007 that adult falcons failed to nest at the Precipice.

“It isn’t uncommon for falcon pairs to fail to nest in some years,” Acadia biologist Bruce Connery said. “Over the course of 27 years, the Precipice site pair has successfully nested 25 times.”

More than 140 peregrine falcon chicks have fledged from cliffs in Acadia since the first are known to have hatched here in 1991. At least five fledged in 2017 and 11 in 2016, park officials said.

Dick Broom

Dick Broom

Reporter at Mount Desert Islander
Dick Broom covers the towns of Mount Desert and Southwest Harbor, Mount Desert Island High School and the school system board and superintendent's office. He enjoys hiking with his golden retriever and finding new places for her to swim. [email protected]

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