2/10/09 Nest Site

I went out to the peregrine nest site today. Claire was here from the UK  so I took her out to see the canyon.

We got there around 9:30.  It was cold when we got there but we warmed up walking in.   The canyon was in sun and it was comfortable enough that I took off my coat to sit on.  (I didn’t have Cheryl along so didn’t have her curtains to sit on–I’m just not as organized as Cheryl).

Ms X was in the smaller hole above and to the right of the largest cave.  At 9:50, the tiercel flew in with some food for her.  They both flew off and sailed around for a short time.  She seems to have her own favorite perches, different from the past falcon’s old favorites and different from the tiercel’s.  She went to the front face of Pyramid Rock, flew to an area to the left of the cliff face.  We saw a turkey vulture jump as she sailed by wailing.

For a long time I could hear her but couldn’t see her.  Then she flew past the TV again, back again, and I found her in a small hole in a rock to the left of the outcrop where the horizontal crack is.  She flew up to the left edge of that rock, took the bird that the tiercel had brought for her and plucked and ate it.

The tiercel was sitting in the spot the falcon had been in when we first got there.

Ms X finished eating and flew to the nest cave.  From there, she flew out of sight between Pyramid and the nest cave.  We could hear her.  They both flew around, landing in the nest cave, then out again and off to the area behind the ridge.

Claire and I went for a walk down the trail.  We saw them flying around once while we were walking.  We turned back, passing the nest area, not seeing the peregrines.  We said goodbye to them and left.

We saw three redtails in the area between the swimming pool and the parking lot, an acorn woodpecker near the rest room.  The usual turkey vultures were around.  No coyotes today.

We took the North Road into the Park and stopped many times to look at the 30 or so redtails.  We saw a beautiful chocolate colored dark morph.  There was a pair doing some talon-linked sky dancing.

We left the park on the South Road.  As we were making our way down to the freeway, a red shoulder flew out of the trees and landed on a traffic sign just at the edge of the road in front of us.  I pulled as far off the road as I could, put on my flashers and we sat and watched the redshoulder.  Beautiful bird and only about 15 feet in front of the car.

Redshouldered Hawk

Redshouldered Hawk

We got home after 3 pm.


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