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Contact: Rebecca Cole-Will, 207-288-8728
Contact: Bruce Connery, 207-288-8726
Superintendent Sheridan Steele announced that the Precipice, Valley Cove, and Jordan Cliffs trails in Acadia National Park opened on Thursday August 6, 2015. Adult peregrine falcons that occupied these nesting territories since April have successfully raised chicks, which fledged approximately 5 weeks ago and are now mostly independent of both the cliff areas and their adult parents. These areas were closed in April to support ongoing recovery efforts for the peregrine falcon in Maine, which is listed as an Endangered Species under the Maine Endangered Species Act.
The fledglings have become less dependent on the cliff and their parents over the last few weeks. Research has shown that nesting falcons are particularly vulnerable to human disturbance originating immediately above the nesting area or directed at the nest site.The closure of cliff areas and trails during the nesting season has proven to be successful, with almost 130 chicks fledging from all cliffs within Acadia National Park over the last 24 years.Although the falcons, both adults and juveniles, are expected to stay in the vicinity of these cliffs and surrounding areas for the remainder of the summer and early fall, they are not expected to be affected or harmed by activities of visitors and park staff.
Additional information about the peregrine recovery program and cliff or trail closures is available at the park's visitor center and headquarters.