Friday, January 09, 2009

Pale Male and Lola's Nest, Valkyrie of Thompkins Square, and a First in the U.S. Bird

Photograph Donegal Browne
Pale Male surveys his domain from the vantage point of the 927 Fifth Avenue nest.

The only wind information I had at the point that I emailed John Blakeman was for March 8th, the day with the strongest wind for the month of March 2008, 64 mph wind gusts buffeted the area. The temperature ranged that day from a low of 33F and a high of 48F. I asked Mr. Blakeman whether those temperatures with gusts of wind that strong could have cooled Pale Male and Lola's eggs.

Here is his response--


Yes, 60-plus mph gusts, especially at a nest against a wall (as is 927) could cool the eggs. But had incubation begun in the first or second week of March?


Which is an excellent question for which I don't have the answer here in Wisconsin. Though Lola was sitting the nest in 2002, 2003, and 2004 by the 8th of March. (Anyone have the 2008 date at their finger tips?) There certainly were other days in March with comparable temperatures, but I haven't dug out wind data for the rest of the month as yet so there may be other days that could be suspect. Guess I better get busy.

Photograph by Francois Portmann
And as promised the rest of the dynamite photographic sequence taken by Francois Portmann of Valkyrie the immature Red-tailed Hawk of Tompkins Square Park. The other section can be found on the post, one down, titled "Valkyrie of Tompkins Square, Tulsa Nest Question..."

Looks like Valkyrie has spotted something.

Photograph by Francois Portmann

Is there a bird, under her left foot? If so what is she doing with her right talons?

Photograph by Francois Portmann
And later...

Photograph by Francois Portmann
Valkyrie sees a possible dinner in the scampering form of a Gray Squirrel.

Photograph by Francois Portmann

Photograph by Francois Portmann

Photograph by Francois Portmann
Photograph by Francois Portmann
FOCUS! No matter the obstacles. (Continued one post down.)
R. of Illinois has been out gleaning other birding goodies and here is her find for the day...
Rare 'dinky' bird migrates to US for first time

CHOKE CANYON, Texas – Birders with binoculars and cameras are flocking to a
remote state park in search of a small yellow-chested bird that apparently
crossed the U.S. Border for the first time from its high-mountain habitat to
the south.

At 5 inches with beige and yellow markings, the pine flycatcher doesn't look like much, but its unprecedented migration from Mexico and Guatemala is exciting birders all over the country.
I am so sorry I will not be there as I have unavoidable responsibilities here, but I too shall be remembering Eleanor...
Donegal Browne


Karen Anne said...

By googling, I found on these recent "eggs laid" dates:
2005 Mar 9
2006 Mar 5
2007 Mar 11

I don't know if the 2008 dates were recorded.

Karen Anne said...

According to your blog :-)

on Thursday,March 6, 2008, Lola stayed overnight on the nest, hence, presumably, an egg.

Donegal Browne said...

Thanks Karen, for nailing the date down. How soon I forget. :-)

Therefore the clutch may have been started, if we use the 6th as her first overnight.

If Lola did indeed lay on the 6th, it is conceivable that a second and perhaps last egg was laid on the 8th.

With this caveat, the number of days from first overnight until first observed feeding at 927 tends to be more days than the literature tells us it should be. Though there is no way of knowing if the first egg is laid immediately, if she sits a few days before laying, or whether the extra days are on the other end of the span of days when feeding doesn't happen immediately upon hatching, and is possibly not observed from the first feeding..