Revolving Faster, Plus Comfort Food

Morela brings comfort food to the nest to court with Terzo, 30 March 2020, 16:37

31 March 2020:

Yesterday the revolving door of male peregrine falcons moved faster at the Cathedral of Learning. Terzo and the unbanded male (later named Ecco) appeared over and over again on camera, usually with Morela. As Morela got closer to laying her first egg — not yet — she brought prey with her and clutched it while crouching over the scrape. Maybe it’s comfort food.

This Day In A Minute video for 30 March 2020, 7a-7p, shows the revolving door spinning faster and faster.

Thanks to your watchful eyes on the National Aviary falconcam and your comments telling me when a male peregrine is at the nest, I was able to piece together this play-by-play for 30 March 2020:

  • 6:36a Terzo
  • 10:02a Terzo
  • 11:26a New unbanded male (Ecco)
  • 11:36a New unbanded male
  • 11:52a New unbanded male
  • 12:23p New unbanded male
  • 12:49p New unbanded male
  • 1:15p New unbanded male
  • 1:57p Terzo
  • 3:32p New unbanded male
  • 3:51p Terzo
  • 4:31p Terzo
  • 4:40p Terzo
  • The rest of the day was just Morela often with comfort food

Here are just a few of the many snapshots from those visits:

Terzo and Morela before dawn, 30 March 2020, 6:37
Terzo arrives first, 30 March 2020, 10:02
Unbanded male (Ecco) and Morela, 30 March 2020, 11:26
Unbanded male (Ecco) and Morela, 30 March 2020, 12:24
Unbanded male (Ecco) arrives first, 30 March 2020, 12:49
Terzo and Morela, 30 March 2020, 13:57
Unbanded male (Ecco) and Morela, 30 March 2020, 15:32
Terzo with Morela, 30 March 2020, 15:51

At this point it’s obvious that Morela wants to lay her first egg. She often crouches over the scrape and, oddly, holds prey as she concentrates. In the photo below she has her third eyelids closed (nictitating membranes) and is clutching the same bedraggled food.

Morela concentrates on laying an egg as she clutches comfort food, 30 March 2020, 16:51 (She did not lay an egg at this visit)

As of 31 March, 7:25am there is still no egg.

Keep watching the National Aviary falconcam and let me know what you see and when. Thanks, everyone!

(photos and video from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ. of Pittsburgh)

p.s. the new male was later named Ecco.

19 thoughts on “Revolving Faster, Plus Comfort Food

  1. Oh boy, just clicked on the webcam (at 8:25) to find two birds in the nest, both appearing to be unbanded. One left almost immediately so I didn’t get a good look at its legs.

    Happy Tuesday, everybody! Will we be in for another day of the revolving door?

  2. Tuned in yesterday (Mon) and saw Morela crouching in the scape over what looked like an egg. Only to realize it was that dead bird she was carting around. Very disappointed.

  3. At 12:30pm there’s a Peregrine on the lightning rod at CL … watching the distance to see what happens next.

  4. There is an Eagle nest (at the top of my head, I cannot remember where), that has two males and a female – all three raise the young. I understand this is extremely rare, but is there a documented case of this in Peregrines? Since both males in the situation on the Cathedral are not being aggressive, could something like that happen, or is one sure to win?

  5. Two birds in the nest at 14:11. I think it was Terzo because I’m pretty sure I saw a silver band on the right leg.

  6. Morela and Terzo have both been coming and going from the nest as I check in this afternoon (3/31). When I tuned in just after 2pm Morela appeared to be calling, walking around, and laying in the scrape. Terzo joined shortly after. When I checked back in at 2:45 Terzo was by himself tidying the scrape then perched on the ledge.

  7. Sorry, my time signatures in my early messages should have been 14: not 15: Guess I can’t add. Or I thought it was an hour later.

    Mary Ann

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