Apr 24 2009

False Alarm

Published by at 6:54 am under Peregrines

No eggs have hatched at Gulf Tower peregrine nest (photo from National Aviary webcam)

By yesterday afternoon, observers watching the Gulf Tower webcam wondered if any eggs had actually hatched.  Twice they’d seen Tasha and Louie trade places and each time they saw all eggs, no chicks.  The situation got so confusing that I put off making another announcement.  It was too embarrassing to keep changing the news.

Somewhere in the back of my mind was a voice that said, “There’s another way tell if the eggs have hatched besides watching for white fluff on the camera.”  Duh!  We can use the old-fashioned bird watching technique.  If there are babies at the nest, the parents feed them.  We’ve seen none of that activity.

As I sat down to write this message I checked the webcam.  There was just enough light to see Louie standing in front of Tasha, probably asking if the eggs had hatched overnight.  She stood up to show him but his body blocked the camera view.  After he left I got lucky.  Tasha left too and I was able to capture this picture. 

No babies yet.  Louie didn’t bring food.  Tasha didn’t feed chicks. 

And so we wait.

(photo from the National Aviary webcam at the Gulf Tower in downtown Pittsburgh)

p.s.  Tasha has one white feather on her left wing.  You’ll see it when she faces left.

13 responses so far

13 Responses to “False Alarm”

  1. Amy Fon 24 Apr 2009 at 11:48 am

    So far all I’ve managed to catch today was Tasha delivering a non-verbal editorial comment to all us human voyeurs.

    (It did make me laugh, though.)

  2. Kit McGlincheyon 24 Apr 2009 at 12:35 pm

    Dear Kate – I have been hesitant to write this because it is a little bit gruesome (you may certainly edit it out if you think best) there was a chick in the nest – not a falcon chick – it was Tasha’s dinner. She flew in with it, wallowed it around a bit, sat on it a while and then decided it was lunch. Sincerely, Kit

  3. Kate St. Johnon 24 Apr 2009 at 12:57 pm

    It is possible she snacked on something while at the nest.
    If it’s true that the eggs should have hatched by Tuesday, then I’m sure she knew that too and is feeling rather desperate about it. By this time the chicks would be making peeping noises from inside the eggs. We can’t know if those eggs are silent or not. We can only wait.

  4. Joannon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:44 pm

    I’m not sure but it looks like 1 of the eggs may have hatched. I can see something white from one of the eggs but she or he is sitting near it & I can’t tell for sure.

  5. Gloriaon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:51 pm

    I see it too, she left the nest… it looks like a cracked egg… not sure… can’t tell how many are there….

  6. Annetteon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:52 pm

    Yes, it sure does look like an egg has hatched!

  7. Gloriaon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:52 pm

    There is a chick…. I see it…. on the left…. how exciting…..

  8. Joannon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:53 pm

    I see movement at 3:52 PM either Tasha or Louie is bowing & it looks like one of the eggs has hatched! Unfortunately, I don’t know how to bring the picture from the webcam to this website.

  9. Donnaon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:53 pm

    I think an egg has definitely hatched. I see something white moving around among the unhatched eggs.

  10. Amy Fon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:55 pm

    Got it! First we saw a suspicious white blob in the nest with Tasha, and when she left the nest briefly, it moved too!

    She’s now feeding the baby. :D

  11. Donnaon 24 Apr 2009 at 3:58 pm

    Oh no! One of the parents just carried something away. Looked like a frog, maybe an enticement for the chicks-to-be.

  12. Kate St. Johnon 24 Apr 2009 at 4:19 pm

    As soon as the eggs hatch the parents bring food – just in case the baby is hungry. They carry the food away when they see that the baby isn’t ready to eat. Soon enough they’ll bring it back.

  13. Janet Hon 24 Apr 2009 at 5:45 pm

    Just a few minutes ago, I saw her fly out of the nest with a dark looking chick or something. Hope someone else saw that, too! She flew back a minute later without anything.

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