Web cam viewers can see first egg, more eggs expected in the coming days
(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) – An unlikely couple became famous last year, drawing more than 24,000 online viewers from 52 countries in just three months. While it sounds like a hit online reality show, two peregrine falcons unknowingly captured viewers’ hearts while raising their four chicks inside a nest box installed 300 feet above ground at Louisville Gas and Electric Company’s Mill Creek Generating Station.
LG&E and Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources unveiled the state's first peregrine falcon web camera last March inside the power plant’s eight-year-old nest box. The male and female falcons — known as a nesting pair — are preparing the nest box for another season, the second of which viewers can watch live from the web cam. The first egg has already appeared, and viewers can expect to see more eggs appearing in the nest box in the coming days.
"The female is spending a lot of time in the nest box, and she laid her first egg today. She'll probably lay her remaining eggs in the next week or so," said Kate Heyden, avian biologist with Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources.
The female, named “Diana” after the goddess of the hunt last year, is not banded and has been at Mill Creek since 2006. The male, named “Fabian,” can be identified by his leg bands and likely has been at Mill Creek since 2007.
Peregrine falcons will nest in power plant crevices and alcoves because these locations provide ample food supply and have similar features to natural nesting locations, such as mountain cliffs and ledges.
Since 2007, 23 young have hatched from the nest box at Mill Creek. KDFWR has placed nest boxes at many sites throughout Kentucky, including locations at LG&E and KU's Trimble County, Cane Run, Ghent and E.W. Brown plants.
"For more than 20 years, LG&E and KU employees have ensured the nest boxes at our power plants provide a safe setting for peregrine falcons," said Mike Kirkland, general manager at Mill Creek Generating Station.
While peregrine falcons are native to Kentucky, the population all but disappeared in the mid-1900s. Peregrine falcons are making a big comeback in Kentucky, thanks in part to falcon releases in the 90s and KDFWR's nest boxes placed around the state.
Watch the falcons live from any computer or mobile device with Internet access at lge-ku.com/falcon.
Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company, part of the PPL Corporation (NYSE: PPL) family of companies, are regulated utilities that serve a total of 1.2 million customers and have consistently ranked among the best companies for customer service in the United States. LG&E serves 318,000 natural gas and 393,000 electric customers in Louisville and 16 surrounding counties. KU serves 539,000 customers in 77 Kentucky counties and five counties in Virginia. More information is available at lge-ku.com and pplweb.com