DULUTH - An unexpected number of starving fledgling merlin falcons have been flooding the Wildwoods Rehab Center.
Merlin are native to the area and often nest and mate on Hawks Ridge in Duluth.
Experts say the birds are suffering a food shortage because of the extended winter.
“When these cold fronts come through it effects the timing of the songbird migration as well as when insects hatch and come out for the spring and summer months,” bird tour guide, Erik Bruhnke said.
When there isn’t as much prey, the predator suffers.
In this case, the prey are the songbirds and insects which are scarce in the area.
When a starving fledgling merlin comes to the rehab center, rescuers attempt to feed it, but most are so dehydrated and starved they die shortly after arrival.
The ones that do survive are brought to the Raptor Center in St. Paul.
This week alone, Wildwoods has seen 10 birds which is an extremely high number.
To help, please call your local rehab center.