The Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) is included in the Red Data Book of Ukraine (1994) as a vulnerable species, and has the status of ‘Least Concern’ in the Red List of IUCN/Birdlife (2004). In the new edition of the Red Data Book (in print) it is referred as ‘rare’.
The second half of the 20th century was characterized with a catastrophic decrease of species numbers in all parts of the range especially in the Mediterranean area. As a result in 1980s the Peregrine population in Ukraine reached its minimum equaling to about 15-20 pairs. However already since 1980s the population showed a restoration trend in the Crimea. In the end of the 20th century and in the beginning of the 21st century the increase rate of numbers was rather high (as for such a rare species). This process attracted attention of ornithologists from Ukraine and recently three groups of specialists have published 3 papers, which we present below to download. All of them mutually complete each other and allow to receive quite a full image of the current status of the Peregrine Falcon in Ukraine. The numbers of breeding birds in the Crimea were estimated by V.N. Kucherenko and S.Yu.Kostin (2003) as 50-55 pairs, M.M.Beskaravainy and A.N.Tsvelykh (2009) – about 70 pairs, V.V.Vetrov, S.P.Prokopenko and Yu.V.Milobog (2009) about 105–110 pairs and additive 10-15 pairs in the Carpathians.
That is why it’s outrageous to see in modern editions of the pigeon-breeders (particularly, the paper by V. Trigub in ‘Vestnik Golubevoda’ (Pigeon-breeder’s Herald), 2007, Iss. 7, 8) barbarian calls for exterminating raptors by all possible means as if they irretrievably harmed the pigeon-breeding. Knowledge of birds of prey is surprisingly poor among the pigeon-breeders. Such publications by them demonstrate that in spite of being excellent experts in pigeons their knowledge of other birds, raptors in particular, is scanty, they do not differentiate them and have low awareness of their ecology.
The papers of such kind brought about thoughts about a role of humanity in the fortune of nature. We think there is a necessity to search for weighed solution of this problem taking into consideration both interests of the pigeon-breeders and needs of birds of prey. Moreover, the pigeon-breeders already have solid experience in reducing loss caused by raptors (A.D. Mikheev, ‘Vestnik Golubevoda’, 2007, Iss. 8; Patoka 1995; Aksenov, Timoshevsky 1994; Chebanov 1997 et al.).
These materials prepared by us open a series of papers dedicated to this topic. We invite all people interested in this problem to discuss relations between the pigeon-breeding and birds of prey at our website pages.