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Dive-bombing peregrine falcon relocated from Richardson complex

A female peregrine falcon that had threatened people at the Richardson Olmsted Complex was removed Monday and relocated.

It took 17 seconds to lure and capture the peregrine falcon, which is an endangered species in New York State. The decision was approved by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Officials said the falcon was handed over to an educational facility but did not give further details.

Although raptors are territorial, this falcon’s behavior was considered excessive, officials said. She chased construction workers off the roof of a four-story building adjacent to the Tower Building during the first week of December, and there were several swooping incidents reported in the spring and summer, including against a security guard.

“I’m happy it turned out the way it did. They confirmed the bird wasn’t hurt, and all’s well that ends well,” said Brian Reff, the business representative for Laborers Local 210, which represents demolition and abatement workers who are converting part of the complex into a hotel.

The peregrine falcon took up residence at the Richardson Olmsted Complex this past spring. She and a mate settled into a red-tailed hawk nest perched on Building 10, where they raised three chicks that left the area in July. Later, the pair relocated to a stone window ledge in the towers..

The male falcon was not physically aggressive toward people, and has not been removed. He may leave the area, or could attract another female for the upcoming breeding season.

Nesting peregrine falcons typically return to the same nesting site year after year. The falcons feed almost entirely on birds they catch in flight at speeds that can exceed 200 mph.