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Westchester Students Help Name Baby Falcons Born On Top Of New Tappan Zee Bridge

Thanks to elementary school students in Westchester and Rockland counties, several baby peregrine falcons born on top of the new Tappan Zee Bridge have been bestowed with creative names. 

The four baby peregrine falcons born on top of the new Tappan Zee Bridge. 

The four baby peregrine falcons born on top of the new Tappan Zee Bridge. 

Photo Credit: X/@GMMCB

To name the falcons, which were born in late May on top of the new Tappan Zee Bridge, the New York State Thruway Authority and Veolia Water held a contest in which voters could decide between several names chosen by schoolchildren throughout the region.

Nearly 200,000 votes later, the results are in — the four winning names are: 

  • Beakoncé, which earned 26 percent of votes and was the idea of Ms. Tolomeo and Ms. Ingram’s 3rd graders at Greenvale Elementary in Scarsdale;
  • Estrella, which earned 23 percent of votes and was the idea of Mrs. O’Brien’s 4th graders at Park Avenue School in Port Chester;
  • Taylor Swoop, which earned 19 percent of votes and was the idea of Ms. Kopac, Ms. Sullivan and Mr. Tanenbaum’s 4th graders at Cottage Lane Elementary in Blauvelt;
  • Jet, which earned 14 percent of votes and was the idea of Mrs. Pease’s 5th graders at Bedford Hills Elementary School in Bedford Hills. 

According to the Bedford Central School District, when Pease’s class learned that their name was one of the finalists, they immediately began celebrating. 

"When they found out they won, the class erupted," Pease said, adding that they had been watching the falcons on the Thruway Authority's live camera before they were even born. 

The name "Jet" came from a haiku the class read about falcons. The idea for the name came from Brandon Lobo Hernandez, school officials added. 

Meanwhile, the students from O’Brien’s 4th-grade class in Port Chester settled on the name "Estrella" because it is the Spanish word for star, Thruway Authority officials said. 

As for "Taylor Swoop," the idea came from combining iconic pop star Taylor Swift's name with "swooping," an action commonly performed by falcons, according to one student from Cottage Lane Elementary. 

This wasn't the only falcon named after a pop star, as "Beakoncé" came from beloved singer Beyoncé's name.

For those who want to continue following the baby falcons' journeys, their live camera feed can be accessed by clicking here. 

The new Tappan Zee Bridge's official name is the Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge. The old bridge's official name was the Gov. Malcolm Wilson Tappan Zee Bridge.

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