Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Would you ever have guessed?

You are the fastest bird in the world!  You dive at over 200 miles per hour!  You are renown for your aerial dynamics!  Death on swift wings!   You capture and; kill your prey in mid air!  And how do you sleep? Like this!   Check out those orange legs sprawled out!  Flat on their bellies!  These are the eyases of the Red Deer Tower in Canada.  This is a nest box 312 feet up on a pole with a camera installed.  You can watch these guys on Ustream The third chick hatched on my birthday June 13th~!  Such a cool gift!
Here's dad w/the babies.

These are one of my favorite bird species.  The chicks grow so fast! 
Peregrine falcons mate for life and breed in the same territory each year. The male courts the female for about one month, using aerial displays. (This means the male must work at it every year even though they are mated!) They make a nest, or scrape, (which explains why the next box has rocks in it)  on ledges and in small caves located high on a cliff. Some peregrine falcons will use man-made structures such as bridges and skyscrapers to nest.  One of my favorite things was watching the  pair alternately sit the nest & each one would rearrange the tiny pebbles each time!  I always envisioned their inner voices like this 'Gal dang!  I just put this rock over here!  That male thinks he can just come in here and..."  And the Male:  "For pity's sake woman!  Leave me rocks alone!")

Did You Know?

Peregrine Falcon chicks, called eyases, eat an incredible amount of food - in six days, they double their weight, and at three weeks are ten times their size at birth!  ( I can vouch for this; feeding times are fast, brutal and facinating to watch!)
Mating season: Late March through May.
Gestation: 29-32 days for egg incubation.
Clutch size: 3-4 eggs.  (This pair have three)
Both the male and female incubate the eggs for about one month. The chicks start to fly in about 42 days, but are still dependent on their parents to learn how to hunt. Peregrine falcons are very territorial during breeding season and will vigorously defend their nests.

info courtesy of Defenders of Wildlife

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