Wednesday, June 26, 2013

A Fantastic Season Coming to a Close

We are coming to the close of the 2013 nesting season and what a great season it has been!  After a long drought in Columbus without a successful nest it was fun and exciting to finally get a glimpse into the entire reproductive cycle of peregrine falcons. 
As the season is coming to a close there will be less and less sightings of Zoom.  All reports that we have received indicate she is doing well and behaving normally.  Even a report of her hitting a window earlier this week was of only slight concern since she was observed flying up and away after the impact.   Late last week some falcon fans were downtown at street level and both reported hearing the screeching of a young peregrine at two different times of the day.  In both cases, when the person looked up, they saw 2 falcons flying.  We assume this would be Zoom with either Durand or Spark.  The screeching is Zoom expressing normal raptor adolescent behavior.  As she is getting older Durand and Spark are not feeding her as much and the vocalizing is her "complaining" about it (begging).  In general there will be many vocalizations as the three continue to interact.
On Monday (6/24) the below image was saved from the ledgecam.  The bird in the picture appears to be Zoom because an adult would show more definition in the lighter chest area.  Without that contrast on the front of the bird then we assume this bird is overall darker and so it is probably Zoom.
As the summer goes on Zoom will continue to develop her independence and perfect her hunting skills.  She will probably remain in the downtown area at least for several weeks but by the end of summer she will migrate out of the area, hopefully to survive and establish a nesting territory of her own.
As the nestbox activities come to an end so do our regular updates to the blog.  We will continue to monitor things for the rest of the summer and update when/if  something extraordinary occurs and certainly later this year when the nestbox is cleaned out.  As in previous years, the cameras will remain on even in the "off season."  A BIG THANKS to everyone for watching this season and supporting the ODNR Division of Wildlife's peregrine program!