Sunday, June 21, 2015

The Saturday Fifth Avenue Urban Hawk Report From Stella Hamilton

 Just in from Stella Hamilton- (her report in italics below) 
Stella is a hawkwatcher who has been watching the Fifth Avenue Hawks for well over a decade.

THE STELLA REPORT-Saturday 927 Fifth Avenue
 All Hawk photographs courtesy of Stella Hamilton

Pale Male is on Linda 6. 

 See him in the center of the photo on the last window of Linda.  It is the 6th or last window if the count is started from the corner on the left, north, of the Linda building.   The hawks use the second from the top floor for perching because some of  those windows have a have handy wrought iron railings.  The visibility from those perches include  portions of Central Park as well as Fifth Avenue.

 Octavia is also on Linda.   
 See Octavia on the second floor down perched on the north, left, corner of Linda.  This isn't a perch that has been used by any of the other hawks before her as far as I know, and she uses it constantly as does Pale Male now that she has started the practice.

4:12 PM  The youngest eyass  is still on the nest.  I was told that yesterday the other two eyasses had returned to the nest.

In my experience, having young return to a building nest is somewhat unusual unless there are very handy close trees or other perches in route which make the return journey a very short flight. 

 The fledglings did it all the time at the original Fordham nest built by Hawkeye and Rose.  It was located on the wide and deep pediment of Collins Auditorium with trees only a few feet away.  It was always hard to tell on that nest who had fledged and who hadn't as the fledglings went back and forth so often from nest to tree and back again. 

In all the years I watched the St. John the Divine Cathedral nest of  Tristan and Isolde I don't think I ever saw a  fledgling return to the nest in the crook of St. Andrew's elbow.  

It doesn't mean it never ever happened.  I was there a lot but not 24 hours a day.  There were no adjacent trees for that nest.  There were adjacent trees and parts of the Cathedral handy to other portions of the Cathedral and they did spend a good bit of time perching on other portions of the Cathedral.  I assume that the overhanging cornice above the nest which kept that nest dry was somewhat of a deterrent for easily returning to it.

 A second fledgling is on Woody.And I'm told another fledgling is on a tree behind Le Pain Quotidien which I haven't  found yet. 
 7:21 PM Pale Male hunting at 79th Street.

7:47 PM Pale Male hunting at 79th St. and Fifth Avenue.

8:02 PM  Octavia on the Met being harassed by Mockingbird.

Note the times of the three previous photographs.  Octavia has perched herself high up on the top of The Metropolitan Museum, and has likely been there for awhile, making herself a perfect target for mobbing Mockingbirds so Pale Male could hunt in peace. 

 It would be very difficult to do any stealth hunting with screaming Mockingbirds diving at you.  Therefore  while one of the pair, in this case Pale Male hunts, his mate Octavia, makes herself an obvious target, drawing off the screaming and diving Mockingbirds.  Much the same way Pale Male did in the previous post.  (We'll be back to that particular episode for the rest of that day's story very soon.)

           Photo courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum
 In this case Pale Male is hunting at 79th and Fifth Avenue while Octavia is making herself a target at the Met which is located at 1000 Fifth Avenue which is at 82nd St....four of the short NYC blocks.  The pair can keep an eye on each other plus Octavia can attempt to keep track of  the fledglings while being mobbed.  Remember that while Pale Male was being mobbed he was keeping a close eye on the Park as well, right?.

Happy Hawking!
Donegal Browne

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