The roof of the VEC East Building (formally the Lowe Campbell Ewald Building) is the home of a pair of Peregrine Falcons. Peregrine Falcons are protected federally under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. In Michigan, they remain listed as an endangered species, according to the DNR website. The male, General Brock, was born at the Ambassador Bridge in Windsor, Ontario in 2012 and the female, Isabella, was born at Consumers Energy in Ottawa County, Michigan in 2011. They had three chicks hatch this spring, two males and one female.
The Peregrine Falcons nested on the roof, all roof work ceased until June 22nd
. At that time, the juveniles would be large enough to fly to a safe location and come back once employees left the roof for the day. On May 26th
, General Motors asked Ideal Contracting to assist the DNR and the Detroit Zoo on the roof. They needed roof access so they could band the babies and to make sure they were healthy. Jeremy Gilmore, Cory McLaughlin, and Marshall Redder got the DNR into harnesses and Self Retracting Lifelines so they could go onto the roof. The DNR brought the Falcon chicks inside to the penthouse where the Detroit Zoo, General Motors, and several news outlets were. The DNR explained what they were doing and gave a brief history on the Falcons.
On June 10th
, one of the Falcon juveniles fledged but didn’t make it back to the nest. It made it to a tree but was located near the construction zone. Ideal Contracting notified the DNR and they came to the jobsite and rescue the juvenile. On June 18th
, the DNR brought the juvenile back to the site so they could release it. Marshall Redder escorted the DNR onto the roof where they had the falcon in a pet carrier. When the falcon was released, it was greeted by one of its nest mates.