Periodic Status Review for the Peregrine Falcon (2024)


Published: June 2024

Pages: 24

Author(s): Joseph B. Buchanan, Mark S. Vekasy and Gerald E. Hayes

Executive Summary

Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus) exhibited well-documented population declines across North America and much of their global range following the widespread use of DDT shortly after the Second World War. The Peregrine Falcon was listed nationally as an endangered species by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1970 and by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission in 1980 when only five pairs were known in Washington. With the restriction placed on the use of DDT, the peregrine population has recovered and was removed from the federal endangered species list in 1999. In 2002, when >70 breeding territories were documented, the species was reclassified as a state sensitive species.

WDFW last completed comprehensive surveys of peregrine falcon territories in 2009. In that year, the Department identified 108 occupied territories, a continued linear increase in the number of occupied territories since 1990. The Peregrine Falcon was delisted by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission in 2016.

Although WDFW no longer actively monitors this species across the Washington range we work with partners to monitor opportunistically and around important management areas. WDFW reviews and maintains a record of the number of breeding territories and locations in Washington. The species continues to increase in abundance and as of December 2021 there were 190 known breeding territories in Washington, far exceeding historical levels and estimates of future abundance presented in the 2002 status review. The population has continued to increase across its range in North America. The status of the Peregrine Falcon in Washington is secure, and we recommend that its current designated status as a delisted species be maintained.

Suggested citation

Buchanan, J. B., M. S. Vekasy and G. E. Hayes. 2024. Periodic status review for the Peregrine Falcon. Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, Olympia, Washington. 17 + iii pp.

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Draft documents

Draft documents are provided for informational purposes only. Drafts may contain factual inaccuracies and may not reflect current WDFW policy.

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