Pitt Peregrines Have Flown, Fledge Watch Cancelled

First Pitt fledgling (probably Yellow) perches on stone peak at 40th floor, 3 June 2024 (photo by Kate St. John)

3 June 2024, 7:00pm

By 3 June at 11:00am both Pitt peregrine chicks had made their first flight. Here’s how I know …

On Monday morning I walked around the Cathedral of Learning looking for any peregrine anywhere on the building. Youngsters tend to perch in locations the adults don’t use and an adult perched in an unusual place is watching a youngster.

When I saw a peregrine on a favorite perch at 40th floor Northwest, I assumed it was an adult because the location, pictured above, is too challenging for an amateur to land on. Through my scope I confirmed it was a juvenile, probably the male nicknamed Yellow who fledged a day or two ago.

I could not find the second chick, Blue, but I found an adult intently watching the 38 East “patio” roof so it’s a good bet that youngster was over there. My hunch was supported by two “kakking” episodes in which an adult circled the building and shouted at a potential threat at that level. The adults are highly aggressive at this stage.

Around that time Ecco visited the nest for a while, apparently taking a break from babysitting.

Ecco visits the nest, 3 June 2024, 11:06am (photo from the National Aviary snapshot camera at Univ of Pittsburgh)

The parents chill at the nest because the “kids” won’t return to it unless there’s food. At this point the parents are delivering food to the fledgling wherever he is. Soon the youngsters will gain flight confidence and chase their parents to get the prey. Eventually they will learn to hunt.

The last Fledge Watch is cancelled (would have been 6/4) because the youngsters have left the nestrail. The only way to see them now is to walk around the building looking for them. I know from experience that it’s hard to catch up to a peregrine who can fly.

3 thoughts on “Pitt Peregrines Have Flown, Fledge Watch Cancelled

  1. Hi Kate,

    I work in the CL on the 19th floor. I saw one of the two chicks today, June 5, on a 16th floor ledge facing the Carnegie museum just after 4pm for about 15 minutes!! So thrilling. The chick was loudly calling out. I saw one parent flying around the corner of the CL a few times. Just at 4:15, I went to get a better look in the stairwell on 17. And then when I ran down to 16 to see more, the chick took off. I was sorry to have missed that. So thrilling!

    My office moved to 19 from 8th floor last year, and I’ve been hoping for this view. I’ll never forget the sight, esp after watching them grow up!!

    Thanks for all the education.

    1. Stephanie, so glad you saw one of the fledglings. What a great view you have!

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