Where Are Their Parents? | Outside My Window


Two peregrine chicks at Cathedral of Learning, 17 May 2019, 2pm (photo from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

Saturday, 18 May 2019

If you watch the Cathedral of Learning falconcam every day, you’ve noticed a change in the peregrine family’s behavior. For at least a week now the chicks are often alone on camera. Where are their parents?

When peregrine chicks become mobile and start to grow feathers (2-3 weeks old) their parents give them space to walk around and test their wings. The older the chicks become, the more space their parents give them. You’ve probably noticed that Hope now perches at the front of the nest, not on the nest surface. This give the chicks maximum room to walk around.

Hope perches at the front of the nest now that the chicks are older, 17 May 2019 (photo from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

The parents also perch nearby on the Cathedral of Learning within eyesight of their chicks. You can see Hope and Terzo with binoculars from Schenley Plaza but you can’t see them on your computer. The falconcam is below the parents’ perches because it’s the only place to put it in such a small area(*).

Yesterday, 17 May, the chicks were alone on camera for more than 82% of the daylight hours. But they weren’t alone.

If you watch the chicks’ behavior you can tell their parents are nearby. In the photos at top and below, the chicks are looking up and one is whining. He is whining at his parent.

Two peregrine chicks at Cathedral of Learning, 17 May 2019, 2pm (photo from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

We didn’t know which parent was being nagged until Terzo came down to feed them.

Terzo feeding the chicks, 17 May 2019, 2:23pm (photo from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

Yesterday Wendy asked if anyone has seen Terzo lately. Here he is. (As a rule among peregrines, the mother is the one who feeds the young most often.)

Don’t worry about Hope and Terzo. They are very close by. You can’t see them but the chicks can.

(photos from the National Aviary falconcam at Univ of Pittsburgh)

(*) p.s. If you watch the Hays eaglecam you can see the entire nest, nearby trees, and a long view across the river in winter. The eaglecam is attached to a taller/higher tree than the eagles’ nest. At peregrine nests, especially at the Cathedral of Learning, there is nothing across the way that is taller than the nest itself. That’s how peregrines like it.