Have you ever met a celebrity? That's pretty much what banding day was like for me.

I have watched Rockford's Peregrine Falcon Louise atop the Rockford Register Star building for three years now. If you haven't seen the live stream, you seriously need to check it out. Louise has a ledge she's picked in Rockford and every year she lays eggs on the ledge and the cutest baby chicks hatch right before our eyes.

This year I was lucky enough to be invited to banding day for the chicks. When they reach a certain age, bird experts gather at the top of the RRSTAR building, put on their helmets, get their brooms/nets, and carefully gather the chicks inside so they can be named, banded, and have DNA sampled.

Here's what that looked like when the whole banding process started -

The babies were so CUTE and so LOUD! I had no idea how loud they would be. While the chicks were banded, Louise and dad Brian flew around outside keeping close watch of us.

The genders of the baby chicks was determined and then names were announced. There are 3 females, and 1 male. Their names are ...

  1. Winnie (Winnebago County)
  2. Olive ( Olive Little Rockford Peaches)
  3. Star (Rockford Register Star)
  4. Flinn (Flinn Middle School)

All babies were banded, then it was photoshoot time. I clearly got way too excited when I learned that I would be able to hold Star.

After some pictures were taken, the baby chicks were safely returned to the ledge.

You can keep up with the live stream here.

Here's some more photos from banding day. 

Listen to MJ on 97ZOK every morning 6:00 to 10 AM.  Follow her on Instagram and Facebook.  

LOOK: Stunning animal photos from around the world

From grazing Tibetan antelope to migrating monarch butterflies, these 50 photos of wildlife around the world capture the staggering grace of the animal kingdom. The forthcoming gallery runs sequentially from air to land to water, and focuses on birds, land mammals, aquatic life, and insects as they work in pairs or groups, or sometimes all on their own.