Last year two new nesting pairs of peregrine falcons were discovered at bridges in the Pittsburgh area, raising the total number of nests to four. This doubled our peregrine sites in just one year.
Pictured here, by Dan Yagusic, is the pair that nests on a bridge on the Allegheny River. Dan found them about a year ago during his regular visits to the river near Etna. He kept seeing two peregrines - and then in March he saw them mate.
They nested last year but the nest failed. There was no substrate on which to cushion the eggs and then the nest flooded in the spring rains. A double whammy. This year the Game Commission is going to install a nest box so the outlook for success is good.
Meanwhile Dan continues to watch and photograph them. In July he was able to read the female's bands and we learned she was born in 2002 on the Benjamin Harrison Bridge near Hopewell, Virginia. She was hacked (fledged) from a site in the Shenandoah Mountains because high winds at the Benjamin Harrison Bridge usually kill the fledglings at first flight. She was lucky to be chosen.
And now it's courtship time again. She's found a place that reminds her of home and she has a mate. Soon she'll have a proper nest box. We can hardly wait.