Dorothy surprised me

For the first time ever Dorothy, the female peregrine at the University of Pittsburgh, has laid five eggs.  This is her ninth nesting year and she’s always laid four eggs, so there was no reason to expect she’d lay a fifth this afternoon.  But there it is.

E2 ‘s going to have his work cut out for him when it’s time to feed them!

(photo from the National Aviary snapshot camera at University of Pittsburgh)

21 thoughts on “Dorothy surprised me

  1. WOW! WOW! Oh let’s hope they all hatch. I know back in Rochester, Mariah had 5 in 2003, 4, 5 and 8. Kaver was a great Dad and did very well in providing, albeit not an easy task I’m sure. This is just so exciting.

  2. I am wondering why I never see either of the falcons sitting on the eggs at the Gulf Tower? I see one of the falcons perched to the left of the nest but I don’t see anyone incubating the eggs? Any explanations, Kate? Thanks for any input.

  3. By now I, too, am wondering about Tasha’s behavior at the Gulf Tower nest. As of this morning she still had only 2 eggs and she didn’t protect them from the rain yesterday nor from the cold today.

    This is not typical behavior for her and, no, we have no idea why she’s doing this. We’ll just have to wait & watch.

    We’re certainly learning something about peregrines this year!

  4. This is just hard to watch. I try not to get attached to the outcome – as Nature makes the calls …
    But I’m working and have the Gulf site up and Louie just calls and calls and calls and she doesn’t come.
    I can hear her in the background – but she just doesn’t seem to want anything to do with it. I wonder if the new camera has anything to do with that?

    Is it loud? distracting? Or more likely, it is just her age?

  5. One of the falcons was just at the nest calling out, and walking around the eggs, I thought maybe there was going to be another egg dropped, but then the falcon just flew off. Interesting stuff.

  6. From a peregrine’s perspective (where the cam is and how it looks) the camera is barely different from the one that was there last year.

    I think it’s her age… but who knows. We’ll just have to watch & see what happens. At least we will learn something.

  7. What a good mom!! Dorothy looks proud, too, doesn’t she? Almost like “See–we have 5 kids this year!” So interesting and appreciate your updates always on your blog. I’ll be sure to keep checking in as I’m sure so many others will. Thanks, Kate.

  8. Awesome for Dorothy and E2. Hope they all hatch though the webcam will be quite noisy if they do.

    I had also been getting the feeling that something was amiss at the Gulf Tower. Has Tasha2 been positively identified as being the female at the site? Early yesterday afternoon I saw both of them bowing and chirping in the nest box but at opposite corners. There was somone sitting behind the big block of concrete on the left and chirping a few minutes ago but they have since left and the nest box is once again deserted save for the eggs.

  9. J – that is an interesting question. I keep looking for Tasha’s white feather – but the two birds I keep seeing don’t seem to have that feather?? Could it have fallen out?

    I just keep thinking of that weird night last week, where the birds acted so abnormal.
    And the calling was so pervasive and hasn’t been that intense since.

    And I wondered about when Louie fed the female right at the nest site. I’m sure Kate would say that’s normal – but it didn’t ‘feel’ like what should happen. It felt like courtship after the fact?

    Of course course, who knows what happens to a wild female bird’s internal timing as she ages??

  10. No white feather: It is possible that you’re seeing Louie over & over.

    Female not Tasha: If there was a new female at the Gulf Tower there would be INTENSIVE courtship going on at the nest because they’d have to get to know each other. Watch the Wilmington cam (where there is a new female with the resident male) to see what I mean.

    Bringing food: It is typical for the male to bring food to the female – even at the nest site. I’m sure you’ve seen E2 bring food to Dorothy.

    Age: Is a HUGE factor.

  11. Just saw both falcons on the nestbox chupping and bowing to each other..almost beak to beak. At one point a few minutes prior to the male coming in, the female looked bottom heavy and like she was trying to push.

  12. On the Pix controller chat someone said that the GT nest was attacked a couple of nights ago, they heard alot of racket and they also heard an owl??? Don’t know?
    I also saw the falcon earlier and it look to me like she was pushing right near the eggs. Very strange behavior at GT this year… guess we will have to watch and see. Thanks Kate for this forum….

  13. Tues. even. Either Tasha has left,or gotten killed or just took another career. Or found another love. Louie just cries & cries for her. Just a terrible mystery that I hope gets solved soon. those eggs will not hatch when it is getting so cold this night. Faith

  14. Tasha is 14. She is not ill or hurt as far as I know. However, she would be retired if she was a human. She is already a great-grandmother — probably even a great-great-grandmother — many times over. Her “great-grans” have nests of their own this spring. Her much younger mate (Louie is 8 years old) is still very active and wants to procreate. He’s making that mighty clear.

    So what’s happening is normal for Tasha’s age. Tasha & Louie must work this out between themselves.

  15. Regarding a possible fight at the Gulf Tower the other night: At this point we have found no evidence that a fight occurred Friday night.

  16. I have seen Tasha and Louie courting twice already this morning. Louie sat on the eggs a couple of times, for a few minutes each time.

    With the weather being colder the last couple of days, with no bird keeping them semi-warm, will they still hatch once incubation begins?

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