Day 33: white pantaloons!

June 15, 2018 in In the Nest Box, lawrence peregrines

The peregrines started the day with sunrise time at 5:06 AM under overcast skies, winds from NE at 6MPH, and temp at 57F.

Scattered showers before 8am. Cloudy through mid morning, then gradual clearing, with a high near 69. Calm wind becoming south around 5 mph. Chance of precipitation is 40%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Screen Shot 2018-06-15 at 6.15.52 AMAt about 6:15 AM, the female landed on the edge of the nest box with freshly caught prey. The oldest of the three chicks grabbed the food and took it for himself.  He guarded the food from the others, and nestled into the cornersDay 33 – ‘the age of the white pantaloons’.  This may happen a day or two earlier or later, but most chicks do go through this phase where they have large fluffs of down conspicuously surrounding their legs, much more prominently than anywhere else on their bodies.


Screen Shot 2018-06-15 at 6.41.12 AMIn this photo, the female returned to the nest box with fresh prey, 30 minutes later, and fed all of the chicks, at the same time. Both adults seem to feed mainly on prey separate from that brought in for the young, though they sometimes eat parts of the same item as the nestlings.  Although strongly motivated to feed the young, males play only a minor part in this role, and researchers have noted that they are sometimes driven away by their mates when attempting to do so.  This may be partly the result of the female’s inclination to take the food from the male. There is likely a great deal of variation, at other nest locations, on how much the male is involved in directly feeding the young.

Literature cited:

Ratcliffe, D. 1993. The Peregrine Falcon. 2nd ed. Carlton, England: T. and A. D. Poyser.

The Canadian Peregrine Foundation, Peregrine Falcon Development – Age Guide;