7 February 2023
The months of February and March are some of the best times to see peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus) in southwestern Pennsylvania as the birds ramp up their courtship rituals and become more visible.
Pitt peregrines Morela and Ecco visit their nest more often at the Cathedral of Learning, but in this early stage of courtship they are easily distracted. Yesterday the male, Ecco, bowed and called at the nest for five minutes (a high whistle sound) before Morela would even look at him.
The video begins just before she starts to pay attention. Morela looks at him and responds with a gravelly “e-chup” but Ecco is distracted by material in the corner of the nestbox. In the space of two minutes they pay attention to each other, and then they don’t.
By the time Ecco leaves the nest, he’s distracted and Morela is focused.
Watch the Pitt peregrines “live” on the National Aviary falconcam at the Cathedral of Learning. We expect Morela to lay eggs in mid March.
Meanwhile look for peregrines at a nesting site near you, listed below with updates current to the date at top right.
(video from the National Aviary’s falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)