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Published June 21, 2012, 07:05 PM

Group Hoping to Combat Dwindling Falcon Numbers in Minnesota

NEAR WARREN, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Falcons known as American Kestrels are dwindling in numbers in Minnesota, and the Agassiz Audubon Society would like to change all that, starting near Warren, where the group built 10 boxes for the birds to nest.

NEAR WARREN, MN (WDAZ-TV) - Falcons known as American Kestrels are dwindling in numbers in Minnesota, and the Agassiz Audubon Society would like to change all that, starting near Warren, where the group built 10 boxes for the birds to nest.

The birds nest in tree cavities and human-made boxes. Although population numbers are dwindling in Minnesota, five baby falcons are giving people hope more of the birds will make their home in the area.

"Kestrels are on the decline in Minnesota, so providing them with a nest box is two-fold. We can study them and we can also do some conservation," Heidi Hughes, with the Agassiz Audobon Society said.

The Agassiz Audobon Society started the community nest watch to give adults and students the chance to experience nature first-hand, getting students out of their Warren-Alvarado-Oslo classroom and into the great outdoors.

"I guess anytime you get to do something a little different, and I guess it's kind of a rare occurrence, you take advantage of all those," W-A-O 6th grader Aaron Wall said.

"It's easier to learn from them when you touch them because instead of looking in a book and seeing, 'OK, that's a picture,' but what does it actually look like?" 6th grader Jacob Hanson said.

The five baby American Kestrels were taken from their nest, weighed and banded so they can be tracked. The baby birds are 15 days old, and organizers are hoping the falcons keep coming back.

"Our goal is to have kestrels nesting in all ten of these boxes and put up more in every community," Hughes said.

"It's more fun to see them outside because they are in their habitat, where they live," Hanson said.

The goal is to have Kestrels nesting in all ten of the boxes and put up more in every community.

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