RICHMOND, VA — The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources (DWR) is happy to announce that the popular Richmond Falcon Cam is now live for the 2023 season and available for viewing at dwr.virginia.gov/falcon-cam/. The Falcon Cam is a live-streaming camera that follows the activities of a peregrine falcon pair that nests in downtown Richmond, Virginia, atop the 21st floor of the Riverfront Plaza building.
Biologists monitoring the stream have observed the previous year’s pair on a regular basis throughout the past month. “Falcon fans will be happy to hear that our familiar female (95/AK) and male (59/BM) have once again shown an interest in utilizing the Riverfront building as a nest site,” said Meagan Thomas, Watchable Wildlife Biologist for DWR. “This pair has done an absolutely phenomenal job raising their chicks in the past two years, so I’m thrilled to see both birds on camera again.”
As long as no new birds show up and displace one of the current pair, the first egg will likely be laid around late March. Until then, viewers can expect to see the falcons maintaining their nest, otherwise known as a “scrape,” and continue to engage in courtship behaviors, such as sharing prey items and repeatedly bowing to one another.
Comcast Business provides the Internet connection that allows thousands of wildlife lovers to follow the falcons via the live video feed of the nest. This is the seventh year that DWR has partnered with Comcast Business to facilitate the live stream.
“We are excited to continue our longstanding partnership with DWR on an initiative that has delighted so many wildlife fans in Richmond and beyond over the years,” said Dan Carr, Vice President of Comcast Business for Comcast’s Beltway Region. “We look forward to continuing to provide fast, reliable and secure internet service so viewers can track these amazing falcons in real-time.”
Peregrine falcons are listed as state-threatened in Virginia with roughly thirty pairs, including the Richmond birds, nesting across the Commonwealth each spring. The camera gives viewers around the globe the opportunity to tune in and follow along with the pair as they nest and raise their offspring. And, like any TV nature show, past years have documented quite a bit of drama — including territorial disputes over the highly sought-after nesting site, chicks taking their first nail-biting flights off the building’s ledge or even the failure of the nest altogether. It is impossible to predict exactly what 2023 has in store for the birds but regardless, there is no doubt that falcon fans across the country will be tuning in every step of the way and rooting for their success.
Assuming the birds go on to nest in the box atop the Riverfront tower, the Richmond Falcon Cam will remain active through egg laying, incubation, hatching, and development — ultimately following the growth of the chicks until they fledge (take their first flight) in the summer.