September 15, 2014
Contact: Yvonne Menard
Biologist Dr. Peter Sharpe with the Institute for Wildlife Studies will discuss the recovery of peregrine falcons on the California Channel Islands during the October From Shore to Sea lecture.
Today, there are at least 45 pairs of peregrine falcons holding territories with successful nests on eight islands following their extirpation in 1955 as a result of the effects of DDT.
Historically, peregrine falcons were common residents on all eight of the California Channel Islands. Their numbers plummeted across much of the northern hemisphere starting in the late 1940s. Banning of DDT and nearly 30 years of effort to recover peregrine falcons are beginning to show spectacular results.
Sharpe will give an overview of the history of peregrine falcons on the Channel Islands, including the cause of their disappearance from the islands and efforts made to restore a breeding population. He will summarize the results of the ongoing survey efforts that are helping us better understand their current status.
Sharpe received his PhD in zoology from Colorado State University in 1998. He has been directing the bald eagle restoration program on the Channel Islands for the nonprofit Institute for Wildlife Studies since 1997. Additionally, Sharpe has taken part in the research and management of other species found on the islands, including the island fox, golden eagle, osprey, and loggerhead shrike.
The talk will be held on October 8, 2014. The From Shore to Sea lecture series is sponsored by Channel Islands National Park to further the understanding of current research on the Channel Islands and surrounding marine waters. The lectures occur at 7:00 pm on the second Wednesday of March, April, May, September, October, and November at the Channel Islands National Park Robert J. Lagomarsino Visitor Center, 1901 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura Harbor. The programs are free and open to the public.