The winner is…Cardi Beak!
For years, peregrine falcons have laid eggs in early spring and birthed chicks soon after in a manmade nest box, installed and maintained by the New York State Thruway Authority, on the Tappan Zee Bridge. This year, the Authority located the nest in a spot near the top of one of the 419-foot towers of the new Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge. It was the first nesting season for the migratory raptors in their new home.
Traditionally, local elementary and middle schools have been invited by the Authority to name the chicks in an annual Falcon Naming Contest. The final names are selected by the public who vote online. Previous winning names included: Hudson, Bridge-ette, Zee, Irvwing, Puente and Tarrytalon.
The New NY Bridge sponsored the competition this year, inviting students to name four hatchlings. Students in Bridget Bentley’s fourth-grade class at Washington Irving came up with Cardi Beak – a takeoff on the popular rapper/singer/songwriter Cardi B.
The public voted for a week and, when a total of approximately 1,500 votes – the most ever polled in the contest – were tabulated, one of the four winning names went to Washington Irving for Cardi Beak! Students were honored on June 10 for their choice when the New NY Bridge Public Outreach Team visited the school and presented the class with a certificate congratulating all for their winning submission.