Peregrine fledgling

June 17, 2014 in Peregrines at 250 Canal St.

The peregrine fledglings have been seen on many of the local warehouse building rooftops.  This late afternoon sighting was at the 250 Canal St. warehouse complex on one of the west facing roofs.  The young falcon was solo looking west!

Fledgling on lower ledge!

June 12, 2014 in On the Clock Tower

After a few days remaining in the nest box, the third and final chick fledged on Thursday.  In the late afternoon, had a nice opportunity to observe the fledgling on a lower ledge closer to Merrimack Street.  It was testing its wings and hopping along a ledge.  Not only a treat to watch from a close vantage point, but also had the chance to observe and document the black/green bicolor leg bands used on peregrines in Eastern United States.  This fledgling has black numbers (59) over green letters (BD).

More photos:

There is an international protocol in North America for colored leg bands on Peregrine Falcons. The color indicates the origin or subspecies for chicks banded in the nest. The colors in the protocol and their meaning are:

Red Captive bred
Black/red bicolor Eastern United States
Black/green bicolor Eastern United States
Blue Tundra Peregrines
Black/blue bicolor Tundra or Anatum captured off the breeding grounds or subspecies unknown
Green Peale’s Peregrines
Black Anatum Peregrines

Characters used on the Peregrine bands are letters and numbers, with one character on the top of the band and one character on the bottom of the band. Older bands may have these characters either vertical or tipped ninety degrees to the left. Newer bands have all vertical characters.

Fledgling on nearby ledge!

June 11, 2014 in On the Clock Tower

The fledglings continue to be seen in a variety of locations around the Clock Tower with one of first two fledglings remaining for a day on a nearby ledge.  The older fledgling has flown to upper ledges and even atop the weathervane at the top of the Clock Tower!

Peregrine chicks; 2 fledge over weekend!

June 10, 2014 in On the Clock Tower

The peregrine chicks took their first flights away from the nest over this past weekend. Not always choosing to or being capable of returning to the nest site, they will be found in different locations around the Clock Tower like these 2 on a nearby lower ledge!

Peregrine fledglings experience the joy of flight!

July 9, 2013 in Peregrines at 250 Canal St.

The fledglings are having a blast learning how to fly.  They have abundant nearby rooftops to practice short hop flights, glides and landings.  You can almosy sense their joy as they make endless short hop flights.  What a pure delight to watch!

5 photos posted:

Peregrine fledgling injured & sent to rehab

June 30, 2013 in Near the Clock Tower

The last fledgling of four suffered a open wound and right wing radial fracture last weekend.  The young bird estimated to be about 8 weeks old was found at a playground along Island St. in Lawrence.  The injured fledgling was watched by a group of teenagers and thankfully a call was placed to the local police and Ellen Bistany, the city Animal Control Officer was dispatched to the location.  She took possession of the peregrine and then communicated with a local police detective who has a falconry background.  A prompt visit with the detective allowed for a correct ID to be made as well as an initial determination of the probable injury….a wing fracture.  The fledgling was brought to the MSPCA facility at Nevins Farm in Methuen.  Pam Nixon, who serves as the assistant manager of the equine and farm animal adoption center was very helpful and arranged for contact with and transport to the Tufts Wildlife Clinic in North Grafton.  

The Wildlife Clinic reports that the female fledgling with black over green leg bands 93/AD is bandaged with its wing in place.  The fledgling sustained a fracture and soft tissue trauma.  It has been able to perch on its own but it did sustain severe bruising.  It has a figure eight bandage in place, and is splinted with no cast in place.  It performs normal body functions and has a somewhat stable appetite.

 This story represents an amazing example of an outstanding team effort by a chain of well informed and responsive caretakers. This peregrine family is quite well known In Lawrence by MassWildlife staffers, NH Audubon staffers, local police, nearby security guards, New Balance employees, commercial tenants at 250 Canal St., residential tenants at many nearby apartment buildings;  staff, members and friends of GroundWork Lawrence the local conservation group; staff and members of the the Merrimack River Watershed Council;  endless members of this list who have been in contact and shared so many observations, Eastern Mass Hawk Watchers and the list goes on!

5 photos of injured female fledling courtesy of Ellen Bistany:

5 close up flight photos from fledge day:   Click “next” upper right to advance frames

15 close up photos from fledge day:    Click “next” upper right to advance frames

 Blog post from her fledge day:    Click “next” upper right to advance frames

 Will provide further update;  a wonderful story to share about great teamwork in the field!

More Butterfly flight patterns!

June 6, 2012 in Near the Clock Tower

On Wednesday afternoon we finnaly were graced with bright sunshine.  What a joy to watch the peregrine chicks again as they hopped, skipped, jumped and even got airborne at the west end of the New Balance west wing roof.  Fascinating to watch how the parents guard from a safe but close distance.  Kind of like attentive lifeguards at the beach, the adult Peregrines miss nothing!

8 Photos posted:  Click “next” in upper right to advance frames.

According to Cornell’s Birds of North America online entry for Peregrines: Flight progresses from Butterfly-Flight (1–2 d after first flight) to Flutter-Glide (3–9 d) to Powered Flight (15–25 d). Butterfly-Flight appears to be weaker form of Flutter-Glide associated with in-complete development of flight feathers and pectoral muscles. Pursuits gradually become more sustained and range farther from nest. Adult pursuit is accompanied by Begging vocalization. During first 2 wk of flight, young birds’ pursuit of parents takes precedence over most other activities. Young will even pursue parents during territorial defense (Sherrod 1983).

As young become more aggressive toward food-delivering parents, adults sometimes begin to drop both dead and live birds in air. Young pursue and catch these items. Has been interpreted as parental training of young to hunt, but may simply be way for parents to avoid being mobbed by hungry young (Sherrod 1983).

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