Mar 05 2012

Eggs Coming Soon

Published by at 7:30 am under Peregrines


If you haven't been watching the National Aviary falconcams or monitoring the peregrines' bridge nest locations, now's the time to start.

Pittsburgh's peregrines are very busy courting right now.  Whether you watch on camera or in person it's easy to see.

The male brings prey to his lady as a courtship offering.  When he's prepared it to his satisfaction he flies around, carrying it in his talons and calling for her to come.  She flies up and takes it from him, sometimes in mid-air, and settles in to eat.  When she's finished eating he goes to the nest and calls her to come bow with him.  After they bow he leaves and she stays to dig the scrape in the gravel where she'll lay her eggs.  This is a sure sign that they'll nest soon.

You can see the nest activity on the falconcams.  The photo above shows Dorothy and E2 at the Cathedral of Learning nest.  The photo below shows Louie and Dori at the Gulf Tower.


If you want to see their courtship flight, you have to be near their nesting territory.  Rob Protz was lucky to see a pair at Tarentum on Saturday evening when they flew around the bridge and landed to mate.   Their nest location and the male's identity are still a mystery so we're hoping for some sharp eyes to figure this out.  Other bridges to watch are McKees Rocks, Westinghouse and Monaca.

Be alert in the days ahead for the first eggs at Pitt and the Gulf Tower.  Dorothy,  at Pitt, laid her first egg on March 12 in 2010 and on March 13 in 2011.  Dori, at the Gulf Tower, laid her first on March 17 last year.

Eggs are coming soon.

(photos from the National Aviary falconcams at Pitt's Cathedral of Learning and at the Gulf Tower.  Click on the photos to see the falconcams)

13 responses so far

13 Responses to “Eggs Coming Soon”

  1. Kathyon 05 Mar 2012 at 11:31 am

    Isn’t this what we live and breathe for? …Remember how long ago March seemed to be and now it is here. LOVE SPRING!!!!

  2. John Englishon 05 Mar 2012 at 1:56 pm

    I’ve been watching the Westinghouse. Have only seen a couple of red-tails :-/

  3. Donnaon 05 Mar 2012 at 2:13 pm

    Yeah! Can’t wait!

  4. kcon 05 Mar 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Kate…I am the peregrine watcher from Belmar, NJ. It appears that the same pair of peregrines that were unsuccessful at producing live young last year are giving it another whirl. They have been very active around their chosen nest site, the local bridge. I had to laugh the other day because I saw the male deliver a catch to his female. The part that made me laugh was how loud the announcement was. He flew up to her perch with the catch and was right next to her wailing away, so loudly screeching. She obviously could see that he had food for her, but he was compelled to make a fanfare of it. It was such a demonstration!

  5. Anne Marieon 05 Mar 2012 at 4:59 pm

    Kathy: AMEN!!

    KC: Love the description of the ‘fanfare’ Good luck.. hope you get to see some young this year!

  6. Kate St. Johnon 06 Mar 2012 at 9:33 pm

    I saw Dorothy & E2 mating today on the roof of the Cathedral of Learning.
    Meanwhile, Louie and Dori have not been visiting their nest as much as we’d expect them to. Perhaps something is distracting them.

  7. Pennyon 08 Mar 2012 at 11:10 am

    The Harrisburg Peregrine has laid her first egg of the season! March 8, 2012. She is 3 days earlier than last year.

  8. Peggy Hookeyon 08 Mar 2012 at 12:07 pm

    I have enjoyed the “keeping up with your “Peregrines” columns of the past few days. There is certainly the sense of excitement in your and others’ words. And the words make me think I can smell that spring is on the way.

    The only thing new in Dallas is that we have mobs of starlings all going wild together. They may be coming up from south Texas. I know so little of their habits I cannot really say. I also have a pair of Mockingbirds that are out on a telephone singing their hearts out. When I come out and whistle to them, they appear to respond doing their best and least common calls. I imagine they respond, anyway. Sweet mystery of life.

  9. kathyon 08 Mar 2012 at 4:24 pm

    I had the Gulf cam open all day today at work on my desktop, and not once did I see or hear any falcons. A few other people have also been watching the past few days and nothing. Yet I’ve seen Dorothy and E2. I’m a bit concerned.

  10. Beth Ellison 09 Mar 2012 at 12:29 pm

    Listening to Dorothy (I think) right now. She is really chattering! Never heard them before, but I love watching them all the way down here in Nashville!

  11. fleskeon 10 Mar 2012 at 11:18 am

    Why is the information from 2011 not updated on the websites?

  12. Kate St. Johnon 10 Mar 2012 at 11:23 am

    The camera websites are maintained by the National Aviary. They haven’t had a chance to make the updates yet. For all the stats, see

  13. Katieon 10 Mar 2012 at 11:42 am

    I work in Residence Life at Point Park University and live on the 19th story of Lawrence Hall in Downtown Pittsburgh. I have an outdoor patio, and this morning there was a Peregrine Falcon perched on my patio for about an hour. I wonder if this could have been one of the Gulf Tower falcons?

    I thought the falcon may have been injured because I saw it attempt to spread its wings a couple of times and only one would spread. In addition, my fiance was taking pictures of it from only a few feet away, and the falcon was not flying away. I called the PA Game Commission and they said to poke the falcon with a broom to determine whether or not it was injured. My fiance did this, and the falcon flew away and perched itself on another nearby building.

    If you would be interested in seeing some of the pictures we took, I’d be happy to share.

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