Scientific Journal of the BirdLife Hungary

A Magyar Madártani és Természetvédelmi Egyesület tudományos folyóirata

Ornis Hungarica. vol.26(2). (2018) p.121-129.

Population trends and diversification of breeding habitats of Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) in the Czech Republic since 1990
Václav Beran, Josef Vrána & David Horal

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The population of the Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) in the Czech Republic recovered from a nearly total extinction during the 1960s and 1980s (0-3 breeding pairs) and the first successful breeding after this interval was confirmed in 1995. The increase of the population size accelerated after 2000 and it is still growing despite the limited amount of suitable natural breeding opportunities. There were 89 known pairs in 2016, 70 of them were proven to breed with altogether at least 121 reared young. Several breeding attempts on historical buildings in city-centres were recorded up to 2002 (in Prague and Pilsen), but this breeding habitat was abandoned later. More and more pairs are nowadays breeding on industrial buildings. The first breeding on a power plant chimney, 300m above the ground was discovered in 2010. Moreover, 16 breeding pairs were found on industrial buildings in 2016 (mainly tall chimneys or cooling towers and power-plant buildings), all of them breeding in nest boxes. The colonization of industrial buildings started in western part of the Czech Republic and continues eastwards every year. Currently, the easternmost colonized building is in Mladá Boleslav. We have no recent tree-breeding pairs and all eight published historical cases are at least doubtful. Most of the observed Pe­regrines ringed abroad came from Germany, indicating a strong influence of German population on restoration of the population in the Czech Republic. Within these recoveries, some of Peregrines were released in the tree-breeding population restoration project in Germany and Poland, but all these birds bred on rocks.