Lawrence Peregrines: male on brick smokestack

April 8, 2024 in lawrence peregrines

Mon. April 8, 2024 under clear skies, wind SW at 3MPH, and temp at 39F.

Had a nice visit looking to get an update on the local peregrines with breeding season getting in full swing! After a full tour around the Ayer Mill Clock Tower, moved on to scout out other nearby regular perch locations. From Merrimack Street just west of the clock tower, observed a peregrine chasing pigeons just west of the Mill240 complex. Tracked it in flight until it landed near the top of the brick smokestack by the Pacific Mills complex.  This male peregrine with alphanumeric black over green leg bands (78/AB), began to preen itself.

One thing the peregrine falcon does a lot is preening. Many hours are spent each day is spent on the care of feathers, beak, cere and feet. Without well preened feathers the peregrine could become soaking wet when it rains. Feathers that are not well groomed may cause drag when flying. When preening they also remove parasites from their feathers and skin. Preening birds run their beaks through their feathers or scratch their heads with an outstretched toe. Minutes later, the peregrine lifted off in flight!

We’ll continue to monitor the local area for any sightings of a female peregrine. We receive lots of emails from peregrine watchers that follow the webcam. A fellow peregrine saw the resident male in the box with a juvenile plumaged female on Tuesday! This was the first time in months that there has been any activity inside the nest box. The banded male flew in first, followed by the young female. There was lots of vocalizing and bowing before he left.  She tried to make a scrape, then flew off.  Stay tuned for more!!