Saturday, March 22, 2008

Fordham's Rose Sits Her Nest, Blakeman Responds to Odom, the Unigue Nest of Charlotte and Jr.and an Update from Rehabber Bobby Horvath

Photo: Christopher Lyons
The Fordham Nest-Note the several evergreen boughs.

Photo: Christopher Lyons
Rose sits the nest.

I'd been emailing Chris Lyons and asking after Fordham's Hawkeye and Rose so he went in specially today to check. By the way, access to the Dealy roof is more difficult these days as one must be accompanied by Campus Security.

Okay, I went over to the campus yesterday (a day I did not have to go over there, I'll have you remember), and it looked bad from the ground. I couldn't see anybody in the nest, and this piece of black filmy material that has somehow gotten lodged at the rim of the nest was flapping around wildly in the wind. I was worried this might act as a 'bird-scare', and deter the hawks from visiting the nest. Plus it seemed to be causing the wind to have a greater effect on the structure of the nest than it otherwise would have. I only noticed it recently, and I wish there was some way to get it off of there, but a bit late now, and it would take a cherrypicker.

Then Hawkeye showed up, and added a sprig of pine to the nest--he's really obsessive about that. I didn't see any sign of Rose getting up to greet him. Then Dennis Cassidy of Campus Security returned my call and said he'd meet me over at Dealy. We went up on the roof, which was very wet, and very windy. I took a look over at Collins through my binoculars.And there was Rose on the nest. She absolutely was not there on Tuesday, the last time I got up on the roof. She COULD have started Wednesday, but I tend to doubt it.

From up on Dealy, the piece of black fabric, which seemed like a big deal from the ground, looked insignificant against the full bulk of the nest. No sign that it bothered Rose at all. Rose got up several times, and looked into the nest. She also flew off the nest briefly, soared around, then returned, and settled back in.

Two crows flew nearby, cawing loudly, but Hawkeye saw them off. I could not see all the way into the nest, even from a substantially higher angle. No way to be sure there was an egg in there. But IMO, there was an egg in there. March 20th seems to be The Day for these two.

I couldn't hold my camera steady in the wind--even with image stabilization, the pictures all turned out lousy, and I had to combine the optical and digital zooms, which degrades the image. But these should give you an idea, at least.

Christopher Lyons

Photo: Christopher Lyons
Fordham Hawk off for a soar.

I'd asked after the male Red-tail hawk with an injured leg for which there was some concern might be the adult male from the PS nest on the air conditioner. Here's Bobby Horvath's update on his condition.


The male adult is doing much better. I wasn't too sure about him at first. At least no fractures evident from the x rays but unfortunately they cannot rule out tendon, ligamint, soft tissue , and or nerve damage between his talons to his hip . He only had 1 working leg and couldn't stand for the first few days so obviously couldn't tear food unassisted so we had to feed him cut up pieces till he could eat alone. He's now perching and using the foot but it isn't 100% yet. Tomorrow or the next day Ill put him in the flight cage to see what he can do. Ill let you know.


Photo: Brett Odom
Charlotte comes out of her unique RT "cavity" nest, conceivably the only one in the world. More from Blakeman on that topic.

Brett Odom had questioned John Blakeman's take on young parents and scant nests, here is what Mr. Blakeman had to say in response-


I still think my observations on nest shallowness and adult immaturity, etc., are valid. The birds don't build nests with a calculating, intellectual consideration of depth, temperatures, or any other physical factor. They just instinctively throw the nest together, very ritualistically (a word I use a lot in describing RT behaviors).

The 7th ave nest, behind the glass window on the big ledge, is as weird as any anywhere. This is the world's only cavity nesting Red-tail. Although the cavity is the size of a small room, it's a cavity nonetheless. The nest is thoroughly enclosed on all but one side. Weird. Every other RT nest is out in the open, with nothing but sky or leaves arching entirely over the nest. This nest is not just on the big ledge. It's on the ledge wrapped around behind the glass window. The world's only inside-nesting Red-tails. They've got their own NYC flat. (Wonder what the rent is up there?)

John A. Blakeman


A Dark-eyed Junco shelters in the birdie sized gazebo. His buddy cleverly forages in the snow under the picnic table. It provides some shelter from the snow but also from the resident Cooper's Hawk.

Not only has Stealth Robin returned to guard last season's territory from interlopers but I spotted my first Goldfinch of the season today. Wonder if he's thinking of coming back too early?

At midnight the snow was still falling and the Snow Wraiths had begun to dance.
Donegal Browne


Karen Anne said...

I'm getting a little confused, the PS nest on the air conditioner, is that the Houston Street air conditioner nest? Although Lincoln has a photo of the Houston Street male up just now.

And the Houston female with some plastic caught on her foot, I sure hope to hear that is free.

I looked in the nest list at
without figuring out which one PS was, thanks.

Donegal Browne said...

Karen Anne,

Yes I was speaking about the Houston nest. Sorry about the lack of clarity. P.S. is the common NYC abbreviation for public school. Henceforth I'll use Houston to avoid confusion.

Glad to hear the Houston male has been spotted so he's not the young male in rehab. Though I don't much like the plastic on the female. I'll check on that.