Jun 04 2011
Chuck Tague brought his Osher class to Pitt Peregrine Fledge Watch yesterday afternoon. Here’s a selection of photos he posted on his Facebook page with commentary and identification clues.
Two chicks on the nestrail watch dad fly by. “Here’s how it’s done,” says E2.
One of the chicks takes the hint and flaps her wings…. but she didn’t fly.
The FirstFledge chick practices his flying skills while E2 watches from his favorite lookout.
FirstFledge chick learns to soar!
Here’s an identification tip when you’re watching the juvenile peregrines: When peregrine chicks first learn to fly they flap much more than their parents do and you can usually tell them apart from their parents by this trait.
Soon they learn to soar, as this chick is doing, and that hint is gone.
Here’s another identification clue: Notice that the edge of this juvenile’s tail is light-colored. The sun is making it glow. Peregrine chicks have cream-colored tips on their tails. Right now the adults have no light-colored tips on their tails because their feathers are worn. (When the adults molt next month they will grow tail feathers with white tips.)
So this month, when you see a peregrine with a light-tipped tail it’s a juvenile. This hint only works in June.
(photos by Chuck Tague)