!!! A busy fledge watch anticipated for K-W as egg no. 5 arrives !!!

April 01, 2016 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

On Thursday, Mystery was observed with laboring body movements. She left the nest around 9:30 this morning to reveal a 5th egg! It will be a busy fledge watch this year and we’ll need all the help we can get!

!!! Egg no. 4 egg has arrived in K-W !!!

March 29, 2016 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

Yesterday at 6:00 p.m. we could see Mystery behaving slightly differently in the nest. Her breathing seemed to be heavier and her body movements looked like she was labouring. Just after 7:15 this morning, the adult sitting on the nest left to reveal Egg no. 4!!!! A little while later, Caster came in and checked out all the eggs and wiggled down on them.

!!! A 3rd egg has arrived in K-W !!!

March 27, 2016 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

On Saturday at 3:00 p.m. there were still 2 eggs in the nest box when the adults switched places. You could see water dripping inside the nest box as the ice was melting on the roof. A little after 10:00 a.m. this morning, Mystery left and revealed a egg number 3!!! The warm temperatures took care of the rest of the ice and moisture in the nest and by nightfall Mystery was sitting on the eggs in a mostly dry nest.

!!! 2nd egg laid in KW and CTV falconcam is live !!!

March 24, 2016 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

An ice storm moved into the region on Wednesday bringing with it snow and freezing rain. The webcam is now live and Mystery could be seen hunkered down amidst a pile of seagull feathers. The nestbox and feathers are covered in snow and ice. Just after 5:00 p.m., Caster came in switched places with Mystery to reveal a 2nd egg! The parents are diligently keeping the eggs warm in this ice storm.

For live coverage of the falcon family:


!!! K-W peregrines have laid their 1st egg! Just in time for Easter !!!

March 22, 2016 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

At around 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, March 22, the K-W’s resident peregrine falcons have laid their first egg!! The pair have been very active for the the last month, courting around the Sun Life tower and have moved back into the nest box at the CTV tower across from Grand River Hospital. The winter has taken a toll on the nest box with the back door getting blown open and a squirrel had moved in. Thanks to Matt from CTV for securing the door! On March 9th, Janice reported that the adults were very active, flying up to the 19th floor balcony at least 10 times. On March 10th, at 6:30 p.m. one of the adults flew overhead to the CTV tower and landed on the tower opposite the nest box. A few minutes later, a squirrel headed up the middle of the tower, took one look at the falcon sitting there and turned around and went straight back down!

The falconcam at CTV is hooked up but is not live yet. You can see the report of the first egg on CTV Kitchener.


Wandering falcons

July 15, 2015 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

For the last few weeks, the juveniles have made their way safely to the top of the Sun Life tower. The fledge watch team have finally been able to relax and get their lives back to normal as the juveniles are doing well and have learned how to maneuver around this tall building. Often, one or two can be seen perched on various parts of the parapets of the tower and on top of the King Street sign. The ‘grines’ have been very active around the tower on most days and many employees have seen and heard the increased activity. With sunny days and good winds, on most days at around 2:00 p.m., at least one peregrine flies around the tower. Janice usually sees a single peregrine 3 or 4 times in an afternoon. They tend to come towards the Caroline Street side of the tower and ride the air currents up to the roof.

Learning to fly at lower buildings like Kings Towers and Grand River hospital has paid off. Their flights are strong, and they’ve put on many acrobatic performances around the top floors of the Sun Life building to the delight of employees inside. Caster and Mystery have taught them well! Last week, one flew by the 18th floor with a pigeon in it’s talons and a few minutes later, a rain of feathers fell down from the roof. Another morning, Janice was getting her coffee and a ‘grine’ glided belly first by the window right in front of her almost making her drop her coffee! A lot of the sightings are fast and unexpected and no confirmed identifications have been able to be made to see whose who. On another occasion, Janice was hosting a morning meeting on the 19th floor on the King Street side. The meeting was disrupted from all the screeching and carrying on.

On my way to and from work, the sightings are less often at Grand River Hospital and Kings towers and more so on the Sun Life tower. However, on July 15, I did see 2 circling Kitchener Collegiate Institute and over the parking lot at Central Fresh Mart. They circled around and around at these lower rooftops and then flew to Kings Towers with lots of screeching. The one in the lead was much larger and had a lumbering flight than the 2nd one following. I was pretty sure it was Chroma and possibly Reggie but can’t say for sure. When Chroma was released it was Reggie who was most delighted to see her back in the air and kept on flying to her, encouraging her to get back up to the nest box. They seem to have a special bond. The ‘grines’ were very active that day, with Janice seeing at least 3 in the air together around the same time. At the same time, these 2 landed, I could see one circling the Sun Life building tower. I have not seen any at the hospital or on the CTV tower but heard one yesterday around the station but could not locate it. It could have been on top of one of the rooftops out of sight. I did see one circling high up in the sky but it drifted out of sight quickly and was too far off to be the one vocalizing. This family of peregrines seems to own this city. Janice saw one circling above the neighbourhood across from the SuperStore at Fisher-Hallman and Highland on July 13th. They are called wandering (peregrine) falcons for a very good reason. It is becoming much harder to keep track of them as they start to increase their range and wander out of our sight.

!!! A great meet in Kitchener with the fledge watch team!

July 15, 2015 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Mark Nash Reports:

July 16th - 2015
Just a short note to thank Karen for her great hospitality for hosting a fantastic night,,,, and finally being able to meet the incredible Kitchener fledge watch team!! It was really nice to finally meet all of the folks that spent countless hours on the Kitchener fledge watch this season!
A huge thank you to all for bringing of the incredible food and goodies, Karen and Chris for the great BBQ’ed chicken and sausage as well,,,, AND,, I really loved the falcon cookies tooooo!!!

Thank you all for a incredible job well done!

What a fantastic team!!

With four young peregrines having been successfully produced and safely fledged this season in Kitchener, at this point, the rest of course is up their parents and a hole lot of luck over the next two to three years before they will be of breeding age and start showing up on our radar.

Chroma is flying well!

June 28, 2015 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

On Friday at 9:30 a.m., Caster was perched on the top parapet on the Sun Life building facing east. One of the juveniles, probably Reggie, was perched on another parapet mirroring his Dad as they surveyed the territory. At 9:45, an adult and juvenile were seen flying circles around the building for about 15 minutes. A second juvenile joined in the chase!! Office workers on the top floors could hear the juveniles vocalizing and they were seen as far down as the 14th floor. From 12:30 to 1:00, Dale dropped by. Caster and Mystery were now on the hospital antenna and CTV tower. Two juveniles, including Chroma, were on the CTV tower, and one was on the hospital roof. The fourth juvenile could be heard vocalizing from the hospital roof while lunch was being prepared and feathers floated down from the rooftop! Caster and Mystery both did some fly bys and one juvenile followed. At 6:15, two of the juveniles, could be seen on the top of the hospital that supports the tower. In a blink of an eye, in typical “grine” fashion, both disappeared out of sight. At 7:00, Karen and Janice could account for all four juveniles. Kings Towers was the preferred perch that night which they haven’t been frequenting for the last week or so. Redbud and Reggie were doing most of the flying. Redbud, a.k.a.Redbutt, did a beautiful little song and dance landing on top of the red light on the Kings Towers antenna to end the evening!

Karen and Chris stopped by on Saturday morning at 10:00 before it started raining. One of the adults was on the CTV tower, while three of the juveniles were seen chasing each other. The rain kept the fledge watch team away. On Sunday at noon, one of the juveniles could be seen from Central Fresh Mart, flying around Kings Towers and landing on the roof. At 7:30 p.m., Karen and Chris stopped by after the rain stopped. One was sighted on the roof of Kings Towers and one on the antenna. Two juveniles were in the flight chasing one another. Shortly after an adult did a flyby with a juvenile in tow. Ginnie and Redbud did over 15 minutes of flying and acrobatics. Ginnie dashed off at one point looking like she was on the hunt after some prey! After the adult left, Chroma landed on the CTV tower and eventually joined in the falcon follies! Her flights were strong and she landed well, on top of the Kings Tower antenna. Thanks to Karen, we finally have confirmation of Chroma in flight and she seems to have recovered from her misadventures.

I stopped by at 9:00. The sky was brilliant for a few minutes but very quickly the light faded as the temperatures dropped. One juvenile was hunkered down behind the drum on the CTV tower, and a second one flew in beside it. One landed on the other CTV tower and then a few minutes later flew on top of the nest box and was joined by a sibling. Just when I thought they were all settling in for the night, they started flying again! One to the hospital, one to Kings towers, and one remained on the CTV tower. At least 3 were in sight but it was getting too dark to do a full count. All of the juveniles are flying well and their flying skills are getting better and stronger each day. Reggie and Redbud are at the top of the class, while Chroma is making a great comeback after her rocky start. Ginnie, the last one to fledge, is keeping up with her siblings.

Caster and Mystery are permanent residents of Kitchener-Waterloo and have been sighted year round from BMO in Waterloo, to Sun Life and CTV to the buildings downtown and both St. Mary’s and Grand River hospitals. The kids now need to learn how to hunt in order to make it on their own and establish their own territories. The skills they are learning now will last them a lifetime. From what we are seeing from their parents, they have the very best teachers. Too soon, we will have to say goodbye to these youngsters as they leave their parents’ territory, but for the next month or so we will continue to watch their progress as long as they give us a show!

Photos courtesy of Karen von Knobloch

Rebud Redbud Redbud & Chroma Redbutt Redbutt Chroma

Reggie is flying far & soaring high!

June 25, 2015 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

At 10:00, Janice saw one of the juveniles fly from the front of the Sun Life building and back to the hospital roof, vocalizing and flapping like crazy. Karen at 10:15, sighted one adult on Sun Life, 3 juveniles on the CTV tower and one on the H level of the hospital roof. It looked like Chroma as Karen got a glimpse of her yellow tape.

At 12:30, Caster was perched in his favourite spot on Sun Life and took off a minute later on the hunt down over the parking lot close to Park St. He flew over the parking lot on the Mount Hope St. side with 4 tiny birds chasing him! I could hear some juveniles screeching when he got towards the hospital. I only sighted one juvenile on the CTV tower on the Pine St. side. It was standing up and was holding it’s right wing down over the platform. This behaviour of drooping wings is often observed when they are resting. It was hot out and likely the kids are all hunkered down during the hottest part of the day. The juvenile on the tower went out of site on the platform when I left at 1:00.

David was on the watch at 6:30 and sighted two juveniles on the hospital roof above the H sign. One juvenile circled the hospital then flew towards the Sun Life tower and out of sight. A little bit before 7:00, a mallard flew by. A juvenile landed on the hospital antenna. About 10 minutes later the juvenile flew off of the antenna and joined its siblings above the letter H. Karen and Chris, were on the watch by then and Chris sighted all 4 juveniles together on the hospital roof. One of the adults was on the Sun Life building. The fledge watch team have not observed any flights from Chroma this day to assess her flights.

At 8:45, Karen and Chris watched Reggie take off and fly towards the Sun Life building! He landed on top of Sun Life and took off and landed a few times!! He knows how to put on the brakes by holding up his wings. Reggie soared around the top of the building a few times and then he flew over to Belmont Avenue and even did a dive towards some seagulls! This little guy’s flying skills are getting stronger and more confident each day. Eventually he came in and joined his siblings at the hospital. After a little while, he flew back to the CTV tower. A few times a parent came in during all the action but there were no food drops. Little Reggie is the superstar on this day!!

Photo courtesy of Karen von Knobloch

The gang

Chroma’s big flight

June 24, 2015 - Kitchener - CTV-Bell Media Tower

Lisa Reh Reports:

Just before 9:00 this morning, Tony was alerted that Chroma was on top of the 19th floor balcony at Sun Life, where Merry was trapped for a few days last year. Janice and Tony checked on her at various times during the morning. A Sun Life employee on that floor reported that Chroma was on her side. When Janice investigated, Chroma was lying down against the glass and it did look like her left wing was sticking up in an awkward position. She was alert and looking around. At 11:30, I saw an adult circling the upper tower and went up to see how Chroma was doing. When I got there, she was hopping back and forth along the ledge where the mirrored glass is and was trying to jump through, hopping up into the glass. The window is very confusing for young falcons as they can see through it to the landscape below but they can’t get through to the other side. They also see their reflection in the glass and it looks like another falcon so they try to reach them. Luckily, Chroma figured it out and hopped over to the open balcony away from the mirrored glass and the reflections. She seemed to be holding her right wing down lower than normal. She hopped onto the metal ledge under the railing and sat there for a few minutes looking down. Tony and Janice were at street level on Union Street and could see her from there. Just before 12:00, she dropped off the balcony out of my sight. Tony saw her drop and Janice was pretty sure she flew towards the hospital, and the flight was strong. A minute later there were two juveniles flying high above the hospital roof. In the blink of an eye, things change quickly and it’s easy to miss what is going on. With no one completely sure whether Chroma flew or dropped down, we did a rooftop scan. Tony took a walk on the 5th floor roof, as I scanned from the higher floors to see if she fell down to a lower level. Chroma could not be seen anywhere. We put out an alert to the fledge watch team to try and find her.

David arrived at 1:00 and was joined by Kim at 1:30. One juvenile was on the top platform of the CTV tower. Reggie, landed on the top too, and started preening. Karen arrived shortly after that and had sighted a third juvenile tucked into the hospital roof on a lower level. It was pretty quiet other than an osprey flying by at 2:00. At 3:15, Caster flew by with Ginnie hot on his heels. Ginnie and Redbud played tag for a bit. One bird was above the H, one was on the Kings Tower antenna and Reggie was on the CTV tower. Karen checked her images and could see that it was Chroma on the hospital ledge! What a feat for this tough girl! Not only did she make it up to the top of the Sun Life building, but she managed to fly back with, let’s hope only some sore wings and perhaps some bruising. Chroma’s crop looked empty so she probably hadn’t eaten for a while. One of the adults came in with a package and Redbud got it. Mystery was around and Ginnie was trying to fly over the moon!

At 7:00, Janice was back on the watch and saw one juvenile on the CTV tower and one on the hospital antenna. Rudy joined the watch at 7:10 just in time to see one of the adults come in with a food package. The juvenile on the hospital antenna pursued the adult with the food package and caught it in mid-air! Nicely done!! There was some vocalizing from the hospital roof but no one else was in sight. At 7:40, one of the juveniles flew down from to the emergency entrance roof and out of sight. Another juvenile was sighted at the front of the hospital.

Karen was back on the watch at 8:00, and sighted three out of the four juveniles. At 8:30, Mystery and Caster were on top of Sun Life on the Union Street side, Caster in his favourite perch. I joined up with Karen a few minutes later and all 4 juveniles could be accounted for. Reggie was on the CTV tower, Ginnie on the highest part of the hospital antenna, Redbud on the rooftop with the big H, and Chroma on the lower level of the hospital roof below Redbud! It did look like Chroma was holding her right wing down a little lower than normal, her shoulder lowered. She stretched out her left wing over the hospital ridge. At around 9:00, the 3 other juveniles all went back to the CTV tower. Chroma took flight a few minutes later. She looked like she was struggling and couldn’t get the height that she needed to make it to the 2nd level platform to join the others on the tower, so she circled back and landed a little higher than she was before, mid way up on the hospital antenna. Reggie joined her there shortly after as if to give her some encouragement. With her back to us, again she held her wings down and stretched them out again. Reggie flew back to the CTV tower to the very top to join the others. At about 9:30, one of the adults flew onto the antenna below Chroma with a food package to try and entice her to leave her perch for a bite to eat. From Karen’s observations today, she hasn’t eaten for a while. The adult flew back to the CTV tower, dropped the food off for the others and then flew off towards the Sun Life tower. Chroma remained on the antenna when we left her at about 10:00. Hopefully, all she needs is a good nights sleep and some rest for her tired wings.

Photos courtesy of Janice Newton, Tony Bergauer & Karen von Knobloch

Chroma and reflections Ginnie & the moon