Four Falcon Chicks Banded by DNR (NBC33 VIDEO)

By Eric DeFreeuw

May 23, 2013 Updated May 23, 2013 at 6:39 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (www.nbc33.com) – Area school children were treated to what some call a “once in a lifetime opportunity” as four peregrine falcon chicks were banded by the Department of Natural Resources. Not only that, they were all involved in naming the birds, too.

The four winning names chosen by the students were "Electra," "Soara," "Skyler," and "Maverick". “Maverick” was the only male of the group.

It's the first time baby falcons have hatched atop One Summit Square since 2007, and all four babies appear to be happy and healthy.

The DNR puts two bands around an ankles of each baby falcon, one was for a national registry and the other was a brighter colored band which is used at the local level to signify which bird is which.

Indiana Michigan Power asked a number of local school children to come up with names for the babies, and the classes who came up with the four winning names were invited to today's banding. Volunteers from the "Soarin' Hawk Raptor Rehab" were also on hand to talk to the kids about rescuing predatory birds such as the falcon.

Overall, organizers like Erica Putt deemed the event a major success.

"We don't often have the opportunity to meet with some of our younger, school age customers so being able to bring them in and get them involved with our company is a real honor. They came up with some really great names and they stuck. We had 4 birds and three of them were female - one male - so the names they chose matched perfectly."

Students and teachers watched a closed-circuit broadcast from a conference room within One Summit Square while a pair of handlers with the DNR climbed to the nests and removed the babies. Once banding was completed the four were returned to their mother.

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