Some time in the middle of 2007 we noticed that a pair of peregrine falcons, relatively rare around the Central West of New South Wales, were interested in using Charles Sturt University’s Orange campus as a hunting ground. Ian Grange, a member of staff, suggested we mount a roosting box high up in the water tower, on the south window to encourage the raptors to hang around. They took to the box very quickly and no end of carnage was brought in to consume.
o IP cameras were located and mounted – one inside the box above the floor and the other one up high overlooking the ledge and their flight approach.
Since then we’ve been receiving brilliant close-up footage and experiences from our new acquaintances with every intention of making our coverage and data available to the world. We’ve come to know the adult pair well now and consider them a part of campus. Not often anyone can get this close to such amazing raptors!
As an addendum to the above paragraph, we’ve now upgraded both our eyrie-based cameras to high-definition models from Axis (via Lan1 and CCTV Hire) and they’re providing us with superb, world-class imagery and footage, which we can share with the world. We utilise PoE (Power Over Ethernet) technology to reduce the number of cables running around the room next to the box itself and are able to piggyback on the high-speed CSU network for connectivity.
Thank you for visiting, and supporting FalconCam Project.
Ian, Cilla, Scott & Ron
People and identities: …
who have become involved in this ongoing project and who deserve a mention (a huge thanks to all for their valuable input and voluntary work) include:
Dr Ian Grange – former CSU staff member; provided roost and technical capabilities, monitoring and chief filthy gravel cleaner! Now based at Royal Agricultural College, Circencester in the UK, providing healthy international feedback for FalconCam Project
Email: Dr Ian Grange
Dr Cilla Kinross – staff member at CSU Orange campus; the local ornithological expert and provider of sound advice and knowledge on raptors, camera monitoring, bird banding; was also “volunteered” as our media representative & liaison!
Email: Dr Cilla Kinross
Scott Banks – staff member at CSU Orange campus; technical input, website administrator, camera monitoring, keeper of the tower key, potential raptor step-grandparent
Email: Scott Banks
Ron Green – staff member at CSU Orange campus; roost builder and maintainer of the mechanical aspects
Thanks also to: …
Thank you also to advice from various experts in the field whose names will appear here as soon as they can be compiled, and to the dedicated Orange-based news crews from both Prime TV and WIN TV for their wonderful and enlightening coverage and excellent publicity. We must also thank our good friends from RAAF 30 Beaufighter Squadron for their considerable interest, wonderful wartime & post-wartime stories, and very kind donations.
Thank you to Dr Kevin Parton, former Dean of Campus, and to those interested staff from Orange campus, with the odd individual input from most other CSU campuses who have been helping with our monitoring and also providing us with enthusiasm (and the occasional grammatical corrections!). We sincerely hope that the number of direct participants with our project continues to grow as times goes on, and that our knowledge grows with that time also.
Recently we’ve been able to strike up friendships with fellow birds of prey recovery centres around the place, and indeed have paid personal visits to both Healesville Sanctuary down in Victoria, where they offer an amazing bird show, including peregrines and wedge-tailed eagles, and also over in New Zealand at Wingspan in Rotorua. These awesome people are operating a charity-based indigenous birds of prey recovery centre, dealing with New Zealand Falcons (karearea), swamp harriers, morepork owls and barn owls (amongst others) and teaching education, advocacy, conservation and research to the public. If you’re in or near Healesville, Vic, and/or Rotorua in New Zealand we strongly suggest you go visit these centres – say Hi from us here at FalconCam Project!