Photos by Francois Portmann
The Thompkins Square Formel sits the nest in a nearly 24 hour rainstorm.
Just in from amazing wildlife photographer Francois Portmann-
No white heads yet. I think it will happen in the coming week!
By the way, this last storm was the 10th worst amount of rain in a 24hrs period on record.
They made it through!
It has been raining most of day, see the lights coming on in the park? The Formel must be soaked to the skin but she sticks to those eggs.
Deep in the night it still rains and she has shifted position but she's still there, wet as can be.
It is now the following morning. The soaked tiercel who has obviously been hunting in the rain, arrives with a nice fat rat, but Mom appears to have been more attracted to a break. She is likely in great need of some exercise to warm herself up, then she'll eat and he'll sit the eggs for awhile.
Red-tail Hawks never cease to amaze me! These hawks are no pussies.
Many thanks for the update Francois!
Next up, the wonders an old orange can bring to a feeder.
When last we saw Quicksilver he was trying to get into the kitchen cupboard without being seen and I was cleaning out the refrigerator.
Two of the things in the refrigerator that I decided some of the wildlife might like were a slice of pineapple that had seen better days , and a rather shriveled orange. I took them out and stuck them on the fence under the regular feeders.
A friend and I were standing at the window watching a squirrel make very short work of the pineapple slice. He bit it and then in a blink of an eye he masticated it from one end to the other in no time at all. WOW!
I was still digesting the squirrel and pineapple image, and watching my furry guest start in on an orange half, when my friend said, "What's that over there?"
That, as it turns out are the nether portions of a Baltimore Oriole. Roger Tory Peterson was right when he said they were flame orange!
He unbent and looked right where the pineapple squirrel was now starting on the other half of the orange which was closer to the windows through which we were watching. Then serendipitously the squirrel saw us and fled.
The Oriole saw the Squirrel leave and immediately flew over to the orange the Squirrel had deserted and appeared to see us but did not appear to care.
He then went straight to work.
Shifted to a new spot, then another.
It was like he stopped for a moment, orange bits on his beak, to think.
Then he looked straight at the window, as if to say, "I'll be back tomorrow. It better be fresher."
And he was gone.
Photo courtesy of palemale.com
And last but not least, as longtime hawkwatcher Stella Hamilton called it on one of the first days of feeding, and counted the heads today: There ARE three eyasses on Pale Male and Octavia's nest.