May 29 2013

Fledge Watch: I-79 Neville Island Bridge

Published by at 7:00 am under Books & Events,Peregrines


View Peregrine Viewing at Neville Island I-79 Bridge in a larger map

When Dan Brauning banded three peregrine chicks at the I-79 Neville Island Bridge on May 21, he estimated they would fledge in 18 days.

This puts their big adventure on June 6 to 13 with the best weekend viewing on June 8 and 9.

These birds need watchers!   The only reason we know about this nest is because a fledgling landed in the Ohio River last year.  He was able to swim but if he hadn’t been rescued by a boater he would have tired and drowned.

  • Where to look:  The nest is over water, under the bridge deck, on the downriver side, closest to Glenfield (north end of the bridge).  Look for peregrine activity in the vicinity of the blue pin on the bridge above.  When you first arrive, scan the water for a swimming bird … just in case.
  • Where to stand:  Peregrine monitors Laura Marshall and Anne Marie Bosnyak watch from the Fairfield Inn parking lot on Neville Island (south end of the bridge).  Park at the Port Authority Park-n-Ride right next to the Fairfield Inn.   NOTE:  There is no public access on the Glenfield side though viewing would be best from there.  If you have contacts in Glenfield or at the marina please leave a comment on this blog so we can begin to coordinate a better viewing location.  UPDATE:  See Laura’s comment below about the best viewing locations.
  • When to go:  Daytime hours June 6 to 13 — especially the weekend of June 8 and 9.
  • Coordinating with other watchers:  Laura and Anne Marie really need your help June 8 and 9 because both of them will be out of town.  If  you’d like to watch with others, leave a comment so I can start an email list — or join the Pittsburgh Falconuts Facebook group where you can coordinate with other Pittsburgh area peregrine fans.
  • Emergency number:  If a fledgling needs to be rescued, call the PA Game Commission at 724-238-9523.

Right now there are three Fledge Watch opportunities in the Pittsburgh area:

  1. May 25 through June 7:  Downtown on Third Ave between Smithfield and Wood.
  2. June 1 through 5 (or so):  Pitt peregrines at Schenley Plaza
  3. June 6 through 13:  I-79 Neville Island Bridge from Fairfield Inn parking lot.

 

Stay tuned for more details on Fledge Watch dates, times and locations.  These events are weather dependent!

(map embedded from Google)

3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Fledge Watch: I-79 Neville Island Bridge”

  1. Kathyon 29 May 2013 at 10:15 am

    Kate, I drove over this bridge yesterday on my way back home. I said to my sister at the time that I was almost certain there were falcons under us, and was going to ask you today!!

  2. Lauraon 29 May 2013 at 9:49 pm

    Look for the big Fairfield sign to the left of the hotel for a viewing spot by the black fence on hotel property. The view is just as good on the other side of the bridge from the hockey/lacrosse store parking lot or under the bridge in the park and ride if it is raining. The scrape is closer to the middle but built into the bridge structure so it is not visible. Looking under the bridge, it is 7 catwalks from Glenfield side or I think 8 from the Neville side. You will notice a hole on the underside of each section of catwalk. The scrape is behind the last hole but on the backside of the I-beam.

  3. Kate St. Johnon 29 May 2013 at 10:04 pm

    Thanks, Laura. This is very helpful.

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