Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Show Must Go On

With all of the nesting nactivity going on right now, its been hard to focus on only one area. Many storylines and avenues remain to be explored, but here are some of the pieces I've collected from around Manhattan. Starting out closest to me, I have been regularly visiting the Cathedral nest. Here's my first pic of one of the chicks from nearly two weeks ago...

And here's some from the past Saturday.

You can just make out the second chick on the left.
They are clearly getting big now.

The watchful mother!

The reverse angle.

Some egrets overhead.

Up at CCNY, I had no luck observing any redtail activity at the nest.
But I did see the many other birds of the park. There was a preening Northern Flicker.

And this pair of house finches.

From my old roof, I spied many new fledgling starlings, sparrows and finches. Here one of the finches came in for a drink.

But surprisingly none of the resident kestrels or their offspring were present. After visiting their scrape I left in frustration. I did have better luck with the 86th St. nest though. I found the haggard female above the building on a stovepipe.

She's missing at least two of her tail feathers. I doesnt seem to affect here agility in any appreciable way though. This is also the same female seen harrassing the 5th Ave. hawks on the Beresford.

She flew back to the scrape.

No sign of young though. Down on 25th St. I did find one of the kestrel fledgings.

Based on the webcam of 55 Water, I knew the young there were close to leaving the nest. I found them testing out their wings!

From the sound of traffic its clear how much danger the newly departed falcons will face on their maiden flight. In the past two years, one bird a season has been killed in this way. Anyone with any spare time can put it to good use protecting our new friends when they come down.
I thought that since the young falcons here were so close to fledging, the Riverside chicks must also be close. From my new roof I could see them circling the Church, as if demonstrating for their chicks how to soar. I decided to go to the site for a closer look.
First the female flew in...

then the male.


I also caught this blue jay raiding house sparrow nests along the facade for material.

There are also numerous pairs of baltimore orioles nesting in Central, Morningside, Highbridge and Inwood Hill Parks. Here's two pairs from Central Park.

And a Northern Rough-winged Swallow!

Finally, sorry for the lag in posts lately. It's been a chaotic spring!

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