Science Diary: Mohonk - Peregrines: The Pulse of the Planet daily radio program offers free legal online mp3 downloads, exploring the world of sound in nature, culture and science, with audio adventures, world music, extraordinary sound portraits, science diaries, and nature ring-tones; an amazing sonic experience.



Airdate: May 28, 2012
Scientist: Shanan Smiley

Science Diary: Mohonk - Peregrines

Science Diary: Mohonk - Peregrines
Peregrine falcons were endangered by the use of pesticides like DDT. After decades of recovery, Hudson Valley naturalists are hoping the peregrines will return to their former roosting spots.

Transcript:
Science Diary: Mohonk - Peregrines

SS: "As I sat under the overhanging edge of our hawk-sitters eyrie"

JM: The words of a compulsive note-taker and diligent observer of nature, written thirty years ago and now inspiring a new generation of naturalists. Welcome to Pulse of the Planet's Science Diaries, a glimpse of the world of science from the inside. I'm Jim Metzner.

SS: "attempt to reintroduce the peregrine. I'm Shanan Smiley, and I'm a biologist. This is from a report that Dan wrote about his experience sitting out on the top of Sky Top. a muffled cack, cack, cack from the"

JM: Dan Smiley's family founded the Mohonk Mountain House in New York's Hudson Valley in the late 1800s. It's now a historic landmark and home to a nature preserve, and the Smiley family and colleagues are carrying on Dan's legacy as a naturalist. Paul Huth is director of research at the Mohonk Preserve.

PH: "Well, we're standing on the east side of Sky Top, and it was a place where the family observed peregrines, Dan noted their slow decline over the decades, especially in the 1940s and '50s, when the use of DDT and other pesticides caused a precipitous decline in their populations. Although peregrines have returned to the Shawangunks since 1998, breeding almost every year here somewhere on the cliffs, we still have not had any return to the Sky Top cliffs yet. So we're still hoping and watching every spring, when the adults begin their territorial display in defense where they're choosing their eyrie location that one year as Dan used to, we're hearing the 'cack, cack' of the peregrine adults again."

JM: Pulse of the Planet's Science Diaries are made possible by the National Science Foundation. I'm Jim Metzner.