Peregrine Falcons: Woburn, finally on eggs!

April 12, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I4502-001The Woburn Peregrines have finally laid their 2017 clutch of eggs!  As with all Peregrine Falcons nest locations, clutch sizes vary from one to five. Three or four seems to be the norm. Eggs are laid at intervals of two to three days. Incubation usually does not start in earnest until the clutch is almost complete. The female typically does most of the incubating, and during this period is fed by the male. The incubation period is approximately 29 – 33 days. The young then spend up to six weeks in and around the nest ledge until they are old enough to make their first flight, or “fledge.”

Here the female is finally hunkered down in incubation posture with the male nearby watching over the nearby area!


Peregrine Falcons: Woburn

April 10, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I4027-001A bright sunny Monday morning with blue skies and spring in the air with temp almost at 60F and gentle SW winds at 10MPH.  Only the male was seen this morning perched on a rocky outcropping near the nest ledge but the female was not around.  It seems like she has yet to go into incubation mode but no doubt we are very close!

Peregrine Falcons: Woburn food exchange

April 7, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I1501-001Courtship behavior continues between these two adult peregrines with food exchanges and other activities. The male and female frequently visit the nest at the same time, leaning toward each other in a bowing fashion. They may also be seen to exhibit other bonding behaviors. The birds continue to clean up around the nest ledge in preparation for egg laying. Eggs should appear sometime in next few days if not already. The falcons typically lay between 3 or 4 eggs, spaced 1-3 days apart. They don’t start incubating until they’ve laid their next to last egg. Both adults take turns incubating the eggs, which hatch in about 29-33 days after incubating starts in earnest. During incubation, prey is brought into the nest box by the foraging adult for the pair to share. The pair will exchange incubation duties about every 30 minutes to an hour. During incubation eggs are repositioned and rolled, this often occurs after an incubating exchange.

Peregrine Falcon: Woburn female perched

April 5, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I1382-001Made a late afternoon visit in search of Peregrines in Woburn under dark overcast skies, wind E at 7MPH, and temp in low 40’s.  the adult female was quietly perched on a favorite utility pole near the Vinkari Safari Indoor Playground.  She reminded quietly perched , very alert, but with no distractions.

Peregrine Falcons: Woburn pair

April 2, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I0072-001Made a very enjoyable visit to observe the Peregrine Falcons in Woburn under partly sunny skies and broken clouds, winds from NW at 12 MPH and gusts over 20MPH, temp around 40F.  Both male and female seen perched and in flight around the local quarry area.  At one point, the female flew off and landed on a rocky outcropping about 165 yards SW of the nest ledge on the west wall of the quarry.

Peregrine Falcons: Woburn copulation

March 28, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I8382-001During copulation the female is pitched forward, making an angle of about 45 degrees with respect to the perch.  The copulation wail is clearly heard nearby.  As the male mounts, the female spreads her wings at the elbow, about one fourth open.  The tail, up and to the side, may be partly spread.

The male flap his wings constantly during copulation, maintaining an upright posture with the neck extended and best in a curve.  the male may give a burst or bursts of the chitter vocalization just before, during, or after mounting.  The entire copulation process may last as long as ten seconds, and then the male departs.





3 Peregrines in Woburn!

March 26, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I8067-001A beautiful Sunday morning, partly sunny, wind from the East at 12 MPH and temps in low 40’s.  The female was perched on a utility pole near entrance to Vinkari indoor playground.  The male was nearby and launched into flight and zoomed away.  The female kept looking over her shoulder and above to something in the distance. Turns out the male had flown off to soar with another adult peregrine. The soaring together was very peaceful with no signs of aggression!

Peregrine Falcons: Woburn adult pair

March 23, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I7161-001During the courtship process, the peregrines will typically engage in some type of food exchange as a way to strengthen the pair bond. Peregrine Falcons feed almost exclusively on birds, such as doves, waterfowl and songbirds, but occasionally they hunt small mammals, including bats, rats, voles and rabbits. Insects and reptiles make up a relatively small proportion of their diet. On the other hand, a growing number of city-dwelling Falcons find that feral pigeons and starlings provide plenty of food. Because of their high metabolic rates, Peregrine Falcons must consume more food in proportion to their size than most animals. To be efficient flyers, the digestive system of birds has to be both as light as possible and as efficient as possible.

Peregrines: Woburn copulation mode!

March 20, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I6448-001A bright, sunny morning with breeding activities in full swing!  During copulation, the female leans forward and moves her tail to one side. The male rests on his tarsi (part of the foot above the toes, like the foot), on her back flapping his wings, and presses his tail underneath the female’s. Copulations are usually accompanied by wailing on the female’s part, and chittering or “ee-chupping” by the male. When the male departs, the female usually “ee-chups” a few times, and often rouses (shakes her feathers).

Peregrine Falcons: Woburn pair in flight!

March 18, 2017 in Peregrine Falcon Woburn

_W7I6107-001During a late afternoon visit to observe the Peregrine Falcons in Woburn, had a nice opportunity to both the male and female as they perched on rocky outcroppings, swooped around the area in flight, and then perched atop a couple of different utility poles around the parking lot area.  They handled lots of disturbances from cars coming and going as well as lots children screaming and yelling as they departed with parents from the indoor safari playground.  Very enjoyable to observe and record a number of takeoffs and flight patterns from the utility poles along with a number of very brief copulation attempts.  We may eggs sooner this year than last….stay tuned!