Madison Gas and Electric has named three peregrine falcon chicks that hatched in a nesting box atop the company’s Blount Generating Station in May.
Willy, Jenifer and Brearly were named after nearby streets in the Near East Side neighborhood they all call home, MGE announced Thursday. The lone male chick, Willy, was named after Williamson Street, the street that the falcon’s nesting box at the generating station overlooks.
Female chicks Jenifer and Brearly were named after Jenifer Street, which runs parallel to Williamson Street, and Brearly Street, which runs between Lake Monona and Lake Mendota and borders McPike Park.
The chicks were banded Wednesday at the generating station by peregrine falcon expert Greg Septon. Banding allows the birds to be tracked throughout their lifetime.
This is the seventh year female falcon Trudy and her mate, Melvin, returned together and laid their eggs in the MGE nesting box. The pair has been feeding the three chicks since they hatched.
Since the birds first began nesting at the power plant in 2008, 49 falcon chicks have hatched at the Blount Generating Station nesting box, which was installed in 1999.
The peregrine falcon is listed as endangered in Wisconsin and was declared extinct in the state due to pesticide use in the 1960s. The falcons were reintroduced in the 1980s and have made a comeback because of statewide efforts and nesting boxes, like the one at MGE’s generating station.