4 nestlings at Pitt, looks like 2 at Gulf Tower

Dorothy feeds four chicks, 28 Apr 2009 (photo from the National Aviary webcam)

If you read the comments on my last peregrine blog entry you'll see that Lauren & MJED were ahead of me this morning and saw Dorothy feeding four chicks.  All four eggs have hatched.  Yay!

When I got to work I pulled the motion detection photos from the webcam and found out two things:  The last chick hatched at almost exactly 8:00pm last night, and this morning's breakfast was a Baltimore oriole.

Meanwhile, many of you commented that you've seen two chicks at Gulf Tower.  I haven't been able to see two yet and sure would like to confirm it.  Tasha has fooled me every step of the way this year.

(photo from the National Aviary falconcam at University of Pittsburgh)

Two chicks at Gulf tower (photo from National Aviary webcam)
And.... confirmation that there are 2 chicks at Gulf Tower!  Donna Memom captured the photo this morning.

(photo from the National Aviary webcam at the Gulf Tower, Pittsburgh, PA)

12 thoughts on “4 nestlings at Pitt, looks like 2 at Gulf Tower

  1. It’s hard to tell but I caught Tasha off of her nest & just as she came back it looked like there might be 3 chicks-thought I saw 3 heads look up at her but she is back sitting on the nest again so I can’t be 100% sure.

  2. Where does Dorothy go, when she’s done feeding the chicks? I just saw her fly away with the remnants of a meal she’d just fed them – does she go off and finish the meal herself? Is she dumping the rest of the carcass? Was that Dorothy or E2?

    Do Falcons eat most of the prey they catch? if not, then what do they actually do with the leftovers? Apparently, Dorothy or E2 takes them somewhere??

    Also, I get confused as to which bird plays which role. Now that the chicks have hatched – does E2 simply provide food? or does he also feed them? It’s Dorothy who still ‘sits’ on them at night? or does E2 still take turns with that?

    Does E2 feed Dorothy AND the chicks? or does Dorothy leave the next to hunt and feed herself?

    And finally, it seems to me that Tasha is much less active than Dorothy. Is that because she’s still trying to incubate her remaining eggs? I have not had the opportunity to see both of them together at the Gulf nest – but is that male as proactive as E2 seems to be?


  3. Great questions, Traci! I have put most of the answers on the Peregrines FAQ page here: http://www.birdsoutsidemywindow.org/peregrine-faqs/

    Regarding Tasha’s level of activity versus Dorothy’s: As far back as I can remember Tasha has always been more sedentary than Dorothy when on the nest. On the other hand, Tasha is so absolutely driven when defending her nest (Banding Day) that she will injure herself in the attempt if the banders aren’t careful.

    There are also behavioral differences between Louie at Gulf and E2 at Pitt. Louie doesn’t appear to be present as much but he may be very close, just out of camera view. The situation is complicated by the fact that it’s harder to identify Louie vs Tasha on the small screen. And finally, there may be a temperamental difference between the couples. All human couples don’t act the same either. 😉

  4. Yes, well ain’t that the truth!! Thank you so much!! I finally got a picture of the Gulf Family which I sent to you. It was the first time I’ve ever seen him!! He didn’t stay long at all. He also seemed bigger than E2. It could have been the camera angle…he just seemed to be a bigger bird. I only saw one chick though…which leads to another question: If one of the chicks were to die, would the parents remove it from the nest?

    Also, if any of the chicks appear to be ailing, would the Aviary intervene to help them? or is the peregrine populations considered stable enough at this point, that they would let nature take its course?

    And one more question, the whole issue of Mariah losing her territory in Rochester got me to thinking about Tasha. How much longer do you think she’ll hold her territory, since she is an older bird? How does that all work. Does a new female just show up? Do the females fight each other over the territory or nest site, or over the male? What role does the male have in any territorial fight? I guess a new male could swoop in and take either Louie or E2’s place?

    It’s all so fascinating.

  5. Just saw the two chicks at Gulf Site, both look OK. I don’t know how an ailing chick would look, so I can’t say if one is ailing, response to Traci’s email.

  6. 04/30/2009: Looks like 3 nestlings at the Gulf tower now. Tasha hides them well, but I captured a few snapshots showing 3 white fluffs under her breast.

  7. Can’t tell. I know she has one large chick and one small one because they hatched so far apart. A large one sitting sideways would show its head and body & those two white blobs – from far away – could look like two heads.
    Sigh. I don’t know. Tasha has fooled me so often this year I’m just gonna wait…

  8. Tasha doesn’t seem to want to leave the nest-I guess she is hoping that the other eggs will hatch if she stays on the nest long enough. How Sad! I saw yesterday that Louie came to the nest I guess to give Tasha a break but she didn’t want to leave & he left soon after that.

  9. I checked the Gulf Tower cam at about 12:28 this afternoon and Tasha wasn’t there, but I couldn’t tell how many chick (or unhatched eggs). One of the chicks seemed to be standing behind the other which seemed to be sleeping at first but then awoke and started moving around the Tasha came back and proceeded to feed them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *