We used two different methods to estimate the density of nesting Peregrine Falcons (Falco peregrinus) across different parts of northern Eurasia. In the “territory-density” method, we extrapolated our density estimate of 406 km2 per territory (95% CI = 295 to 650 km2 per territory) in a high-density area, the Pyasina basin on the Taymyr Peninsula, to other similar areas across the range defined by published estimates. To estimate numbers in low-density areas, we used published data that suggested that Peregrine Falcon territories occur every 1,000 km2. Based on the nesting association between Peregrine Falcons and Red-breasted Geese (Branta ruficollis), we used a second, post hoc method to provide a comparative estimate where the ranges of the two species overlap. This model was based primarily on the population ecology of the Red-breasted Goose and included parameters such as the proportion of the goose population nesting with peregrines, the proportion of peregrine pairs associated with geese, goose population size, and three other variables. Some of these variables were already known, whereas others had been estimated as part of another study. The territory-density and nesting-association methods led to estimates of 1,586 (95% CI = 991 to 2,179) and 2,417 (95% CI = 1,306 to 3,528) falcon territories, respectively, across the common range of Peregrine Falcons and Red-breasted Geese; the first method suggested a population of 3,652 falcon territories (95% CI = 2,282 to 5,018) across the entire range F. p. calidus. Although both approaches entailed several major assumptions, together they provide the only quantitative estimate of this remote population of Peregrine Falcons.
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Vol. 117 • No. 2