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New falcon living atop UC Berkeley's Campanile named "Archie" after contest

PIX Now - Morning Edition 2/21/24
PIX Now - Morning Edition 2/21/24 09:00

A peregrine falcon that has recently made his home atop UC Berkeley's Campanile bell tower now has a name in honor of the first African American on the campus to run for student council.

Archie the Falcon
Archie the peregrine falcon living at Campenile bell tower.

Archie, named after UC Berkeley alumnus Archie Williams, received the most votes among four names for the new male companion that has frequented the nest of the famous female falcon Annie that has lived since 2016 atop the third-largest bell-and-clock tower in the world.

The naming contest result announced Tuesday was held by the Cal Falcons group of scientists and volunteers who monitor the birds and share photos and information about them on social media.

The bird's namesake was an Oakland native who won a gold medal in the 400 meters race at the 1936 Summer Olympic Games, was a civilian flying instructor at the famed Tuskegee Army Flying School and was a U.S. Air Force pilot who flew missions during World War II and the Korean War, according to an article by the UC Berkeley media relations team.

The other three options in the contest were Galen (for former UC supervising architect John Galen Howard), Morgan (for UC alumna and pathbreaking female architect Julia Morgan) and Mulford (for Walter Mulford, the nation's first state forester).

The bird now named Archie has shown up in recent weeks after the disappearance of Lou, a male bird that replaced a former falcon father named Grinnell that was found dead in March 2022 after helping Annie make their home at the Campanile.

Lou has not been seen at the tower since early January and an article by UC Berkeley said he had no identification bands and could have fallen victim to avian flu.

Annie has raised 18 chicks on the bell tower. The hatching of the newest chicks last April inspired a party held at the UC Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive as well as another naming contest for the three chicks that hatched.

More information on the falcons including web cameras are available at the official Cal Falcons website.

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