Mrs. Betty Enderson and family, Dr. Steve Sherrod, Kurt and Jennifer Burnham,
Patricia Burnham, Colorado Hawking Club, North American Falconers
Association, Mike and Karen Yates, Alan and Venice Beske, Dr. William and Mrs.
Joan Mattox, Dr. Werner and Mrs. Suzanne Heim, Carol and Wesley Plummer,
Harold and Pamela Jones, Richard G. Beidleman, William Tuthill, Bonita Turvey,
Anne Durland
ames Harris Enderson, son of Harris and Marjorie Enderson, was born
in Sioux City, Iowa on November 3, 1936. He passed away on January
10, 2017 in the Hospice Unit at Penrose Hospital in Colorado Springs at
the age of 80. Jim graduated from Joliet Township High School in 1954
and received his B.S. in Biology Teacher Training and a M.S. in Zoology from
the University of Illinois, Urbana in 1959. He continued his education at the
University of Wyoming where he earned a Ph.D. His thesis was on the ecology
of the prairie falcon. In 1962, Jim joined the Zoology Department at Colorado
College at the age of 25. He taught anatomy, physiology, ecology, vertebrate
zoology, and the flora of Colorado. He became an Associate Professor in 1968,
Professor in 1975, and in the 1980s was chair of the Biology Department for
several years.
In 1969, he spent a sabbatical leave at Cornell University under a National
Science Foundation Fellowship. His field work beyond the western U.S. was in
Alaska, the Northwest Territories, Greenland, Scotland, and Zimbabwe. In the
1990s, his students worked on wintering falcons on the Texas Gulf Coast. Jim
published more than sixty scientific papers on falcon ecology. He was an early
board member of The Peregrine Fund, a group responsible for the restoration of peregrines and other raptors. He was
a founding member of the North American Falconers Association, was appointed to several government committees,
and was a leader of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Peregrine Recovery Team.
In 1987, Jim was honored by The North American Raptor Breeders Association for the first successful breeding
of the anatum peregrine in captivity from temperate North America. He received other awards from the Raptor
Research Foundation; one in 1993 for captive propagation and reintroduction, and in 2000 for his contributions to
the understanding of raptor ecology and natural history. In 2004, Jim was awarded the Gresham Riley Award from
Colorado College for teaching and scholarship, which he cherished. In that same year, Jim co-authored a Colorado
Division of Wildlife monograph on peregrines; then, in 2005, Texas Press published his book, Peregrine Falcon, Stories
of the Blue Meanie, which is about his life and times with the peregrines. Lastly, in 2013, he co-authored a book with
Tom Cade and Clayton M. White entitled Peregrine Falcons of the World.
Survivors include his wife, Betty Enderson, son Ritt Enderson (Angie); daughter Anne Toroxel (Mike); a sister, Joan
Silliman (Dan); Betty’s daughters, Carrie Rains and Cathy Becker (Randy); grandchildren , Amy and Kate Toroxel, Alec
and Emma Enderson, Brooke Morgan (Matt), Blake Rains, Hannah, Hollie, and Hope Becker; nieces, nephews, and
many friends and students.
As Prof. Jim Enderson guided members of one of his ecology
classes onto waiting buses following a tour of the Peregrine
Fund facilities at the World Center for Birds of Prey, he asked
them to stop and carefully look around them, saying: “I don’t
care what Copernicus said, THIS is the center of the universe!”
Jim Enderson
Jim in 1964
Among his many other awards,
Jim was honored by the
North American Raptor
Breeders Association for the
first successful breeding of the
anatum peregrine in captivity.
Jim’s concern for endangered species extended beyond science and falconry and is reected in his skills as an artist.
Jim with Meanie and Gadwall, 2008