Preparing The Nest

Ecco and Morela bow at the Cathedral of Learning nest, 20 Feb 2023 (phot ofrom the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

21 February 2023

Even though Morela won’t lay eggs until mid March, the peregrine falcon pair at the Cathedral of Learning are actively courting and preparing their nest. Yesterday they bowed for several minutes and dug the scrape.

Peregrines don’t build stick nests. Instead they lay eggs in a bowl that they scrape in dirt or gravel on their chosen cliff ledge. The bowl prevents their eggs from rolling off the cliff and shelters the eggs while they incubate. The nest is the bowl; it’s called a “scrape. “

In late February and early March the Pitt peregrines spend ever longer periods at the nest, together or separately. Yesterday morning Ecco called Morela to come join him. When she didn’t arrive he dug at the scrape.

By 10am Ecco had convinced Morela to bow with him. Notice how they nearly touch beaks.

After their bowing session Morela went through the motions of digging at the scrape, then stood in it a while. Maybe she was thinking of the day she’ll lay an egg.

Every day Morela and Ecco are spending more time at the nest. Watch them on the National Aviary falconcam at the Cathedral of Learning.

(photos and videos from the National Aviary falconcam at the Cathedral of Learning)

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