Wednesday, May 29, 2013

4 Weeks and a Major Milestone

"Zoom" the Columbus falcon chick is 4 weeks old now and doing GREAT!!!!  Many may not have watched over the long holiday weekend and if so, I bet were probably surprised to tune in again this week and see the changes in this falcon in just a few days.  Really apparent now is the juvenile brown plumage coming in, especially on the back, wings and tail.  Her wings are looking official!!  Here's a great video showing those feathers and some practice flapping. She is also getting much more coordinated in her walking ability (although, the nature of a bird of prey's feet prevents them from walking very gracefully even on a good day..!).

Today marked what we think was the first time that Zoom made it to the upper ledge as shown in this video.  As indicated in the video description, food IS a great motivator and Zoom jumped up there like a pro!  Zoom's presence on the upper ledge is bound to make many nervous...however, while "accidental ledge departures" can happen (due to wind, lack/loss of balance, etc.) at least in Columbus at this nest site it has never happened before a nestling was fully feathered and capable of flight.  At the rate Zoom's wing feathers are coming in if something were to happen, she'd probably at least flutter to the ground.  Even so--let's assume all will be well and she will stay on the ledge for the full term of the nestling phase.  Enjoy this collage of her growth: