Wednesday, March 29, 2017

3rd Egg Due

We can expect the 3rd egg any time.  Four eggs is an average clutch, although we have had 5 eggs in this nest (that was in 1995 and all 5 hatched and survived to fledge!).

Eggs are laid every 2-3 days and the falcons continue to mate during this time.  Generally, the falcons do not begin to incubate their eggs until the next to the last egg of the clutch (usually #3) is laid, but we have seen both the male and Durand taking turns covering the eggs already.  The eggs don't begin to develop until there is consistent warmth from the incubating adult.

An important role of the male is to bring food for the female.  When she leaves to eat, he will take his turn on the eggs.
It is really difficult to tell the male and Durand apart!  I am working on some comparison photos and will post some tips soon.  In the meantime, the easiest way to tell one from the other is to look for their metal leg bands as they come and go.  The male only has one leg band on his left leg - it is the black over red band with the code 30/Z on it.  Durand has a band on each leg - her right leg has a silver USFWS band and her left leg has an all black band with the code 32/X on it.