Denali National Park and Preserve Peregrine Falcon

There are three subspecies of peregrines in Alaska, the American or continental peregrine falcon ( Falco peregrinus anatum ), the tundra or arctic peregrine falcon ( Falco peregrinus tundrius ), and the Peale's peregrine falcon ( Falco peregrinus pealei ). Tundra peregrines breed at higher latitudes in Alaska and Peale's falcons occur in southern Alaska. The American peregrine falcon is found throughout interior Alaska, especially along rivers. Only the American peregrine falcon breeds in Denali, but tundra peregrines probably pass through during migration.

The American peregrine falcon is one of the best known raptors in North America. Many people are aware of the population declines of this species due to problems with egg-shell thinning caused by persistent organic pollutants such as DDT. Populations of this species were driven to the brink of extinction and the peregrine falcon was federally listed as an endangered species in 1973. Reducing DDT in our environment provided peregrine falcons with a chance to recover and the population in Alaska has grown rapidly from 1980 to the present. The American peregrine falcon was removed from the endangered species list in 1999.

American peregrine falcons were never common in Denali. The extensive alpine regions of Denali do not support high densities of prey favored by peregrines and the lowland areas don't contain many cliffs or rock outcrops for nesting. In 1988, Denali scientists documented the first breeding pair of peregrine falcons in Denali on a granite tor near Chilchukabena Lake. In 1989 these scientists found another pair breeding on a small bluff on the Toklat River and in 2002 they found two more pairs, all on the Toklat River. It appears that peregrines are moving into some of the lowland areas in Denali as their populations grow in interior Alaska.

Denali scientists continue to survey for peregrine falcons each year during ongoing golden eagle and gyrfalcon studies. Cliffs and bluffs in the lowlands are likely to support more pairs of American peregrine falcons in Denali in the future.

$525
In the tide towards plus-sized tires and the ability to rock ever increasing levels of gnar, Ibis brings its 742 Carbon...
Price subject to change | Available through Backcountry.com
Featured Park
Rising above a scene rich with extraordinary wildlife, pristine lakes, and alpine terrain, the Teton Range stands monument to the people who fought to protect it. These are mountains of the imagination. Mountains that led to the creation of Grand Teton National Park where you can explore over two hundred miles of trails, float the Snake River or enjoy the serenity of this remarkable place.
Featured Wildlife
The pika is a close relative of the rabbits and hares, with two upper incisors on each side of the jaw, one behind the other. Being rock-gray in color, pikas are seldom seen until their shrill, metallic call reveals their presence.