!!! Markham and Milner update

April 14, 2015 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Marion Nash Reports:

Kathy and I went out to take a look at the Yellow Pages nest today to see 3 eggs now for the Petra/Yellow Pages Falcons. The male was not in site but the female was closely guarding her eggs and would not fly off so I was not able to confirm her band numbers.

Lots of Activity at Yellow Pages

April 04, 2015 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Tracy Simpson Reports:

Yesterday Bruce Massey was out at the Yellow Pages nest site and found both of the adults at home…   …with company. A third bird, identified as a female, briefly entered the territory and was fully escorted out by the pair. The resident adults quickly returned and copulated on the nest building cementing their bond and intent. Although Bruce was unable to confirm band numbers yesterday he was able to see that the female was wearing a black over green recovery band with a silver USFW which is consistent with Linn. He will continue to work on confirming identities this week.

!!! Scarborough resident peregrines are very active indeed!!

March 05, 2015 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

CPF Postmaster Reports:

March 5th - 2015
A huge thank you to Alex and Kurt for sending in these photos of the Yellow Pages peregrines.

Alex writes:
Despite the frigid weather seems life continues as normal. Beefing up for this year’s Spring Fling; new eggs and long incubation. These photos were taken by my co-worker Kurt, at about 8.30am this morning in the parking lot, south west of the Yellow pages building. Unlucky seagull
Alex Mitchell

All Three Kids Spotted at Yellow Pages

July 27, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Bruce Massey Reports:

On Sunday I checked in at the Yellow Pages nest site in the hopes of finding some of the family members at home.  I parked over by the Wynne Fitness and proceeded to head over towards the nest building when I could make out two birds on the upper ledges.  I took a look with my scope and was able to see that two of the juveniles were up napping away together and the third juvenile was actually down in the ledge and all that I could see was its head confirming that this was not an adult.  I quickly scanned for the parents but was unable to see them from my position.  Still, a great site check with all three of the youngsters in view.

!!! Beachville territorial female has been identified! Its Rihannon from the Yellow Pages nest site!

July 27, 2014 - Hamilton - Sheraton Hotel

Mark Nash Reports:

Sunday July 27th - 2014
The Beachville territorial female has been identified! Its Rihannon from the Yellow Pages nest site!
Wow, Lucie and Richard are determined!!! Great works guys as all of your efforts have paid off!!

Lucie texted me Sunday with some great news, in that she and Richard attended the Beachville Quarry site again this weekend determined to get the identity of the territorial female that has hooked up with Joe - Black banded 48 over Y, the little 2010 Hamilton produced male who they earlier identified a week ago on one of their earlier visits. Well, their efforts have paid off, as they were able to identify the territorial female via its leg bands, - (Black 53 over X).

After checking the banding database, Black 53 over X turns up to be a peregrine named Rihannon, a female peregrine produced at the Scarborough Yellow Pages nest site in 2011. Her parents are Linn hatched 2007 from Rochester NY USA and Rueben, hatched in 2003 from Wisconsin USA.

During their visits over the past month since the peregrines were reported, we have found no evidence of them having actually produced offspring this season as we would have seen fledgling juveniles still hanging around at this time in the season. As we know, the fledglings are solely dependant on their adults for food, training and support for 2 to 3 months after they fledge,, and there is no evidence of any fledglings.

That being said, our fingers are crossed that the pair will stay (or return if they migrate) and produce offspring next season………..

!!! Just when you thought it was safe to go out of the house! False alarm, thank goodness!

July 09, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Mark Nash Reports:

July 9th - 2014
At 11:45pm last night my cell phone range out and had my scrambling to locate my phone. I must admit, I hesitated to actually answer the phone once I found it as calls that come in at this hour of the night are not usually attached with good news. This is the time of year when the fledge watches are over and we’ve already had to deal with the fledge mortality that is typical of the fledge watch period.

While the young fledglings are now able to hold their own altitude and no longer in need of our direct assistance rescuing them from the sidewalks and other ground dangers, it is the time when the we see the mortality increase again as the young fledgling peregrines are now way toooo over confident and get careless with the incredible speed that they have built up. If they haven’t already learned about windows early on in their first flights, making contact with windows at this stage of their flight development usually spells disaster and the mortality numbers increases yet again.

Well, the call came from the security desk across the street from the Yellow pages nest site, with security telling me that one of the young peregrine falcons was lying on its side on the ground out in the corner of their parking lot at 305 Milner and asked if someone was available to attend and could help the bird. They had one of their other security officers out in parking lot guarding the bird concerned that the bird wold be at risk as there were a number of wild cats and raccoons in the area.

So, it was back in the car out and on the road at midnight rushing to the Scarborough Milner business court location. I was met in the darkened parking lot by one of the Milner business court security officers who lead me out to where the bird was laying. As I approached , I prepared myself for the worst and remembering taking a deep breath in an effort to deal with what I was expecting to see.

Well, much to my surprise, the bird turned out to be a young fledgling pigeon, one that had obviously hit one of the office buildings and had sustained server injuries as a result of the impact. I was able to retrieve the bird and placed it into the rescue carrier wrapped in one of the towels for safe transport. Sadly, the bird died prior to arriving back home.

!!! The best is yet to come!! Photographers, get your camera’s!

July 09, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Mark Nash Reports:

The best is yet to come!!! Photographers get your camera’s!!!
Remember that the family rearing process is far from being over, as its now dads turn. Over the next 30 plus days, the adult males will be doing most of the flight and hunt training with the fledglings, leaving the resident adult females some time to themselves to catch up on some most needed sleep and de-stress time. WE often see the adult females on the nest ledges doing some est box or nest tray rearranging and sleeping.

The fledglings will still be completely dependant on the adults for food, protection and support for the next 30 to 60 days as they will be staying very close to home around the nest buildings.

We often forget that the fledglings (I guess we can call them juveniles now, as they are the equivalent of teenagers in their mind set), still have no idea that they have actually been eating birds, as their food has been prepared by their parents. Many of the food packages have already had their heads removed, and with many of the feathers already having been removed, and as such, the juveniles have had no idea what they have actually been eating!
Of course its birds and only birds, but the young peregrines must be taught this!

They must be taught how to chase, stoop and dive for things and encouraged to chase their parents for the food. They must be shown what to hunt, how to hunt, how to catch it and how to kill it and then how to prepare it. The fledglings still have a long way to go before they are actually able to catch food themselves!

For the next few weeks, its all fun and games (at least for the fledglings),, but they are actually be taught important life skills that will prepare them for survival on their own this fall.

The fledglings, (juveniles) will succumb to a couple of thousand years to migrate in the fall and they will be on their own.
Most all of the resident territorial nesting adults at our southern Ontario urban nest sites will NOT migrate, and they will stay on territory all year. The adults have learned that you they can survive in the city all year long, (urban adaptation), and have figured out that there is an abundance of food around all year long, ideal habitat, no predation and lots of warmth from the buildings, especially from that of the illuminated signs that they roost on.

But the young of the year will go! Being creatures of habit (almost to a fault), what they know, they deal with,,, what they don’t know, they avoid! So its up to the parents to teach them as much as they can over next two months so the fledglings have the necessary life skills to be able to survive on their own. The fledgling juveniles typically migrate south to central and southern America for the winter months and have a very long trip south with many dangers.

Also remember, that the peregrine has more than an 80% mortality rate until it reaches breeding age (typically between two and three years of age), with the higher percentage of this mortality happening in the first year of their lives.

For all of the photographers out there, this is the best opportunity for some incredible photos of the adults training the fledglings over the next 30 plus days!! This is the time to really enjoy your peregrines,, so get out there with your cameras and spend some time with them!

!!! A spot check yields some great stuff!!

July 07, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Mark Nash Reports:

Monday July 7th - 2014
A quickly spot check this evening of the three fledglings couldn’t have been better timed!! Just as I arrived and drove around from the south side to the north side of the building, I could see at least one fledgling roosting way up on the upper most part of the Yellow Pages illuminated sign on the south elevation, and what appeared to be another juvenile in the centre portion of the very top of the triangular roof where Ruben usually sits to over see his territory. As I drove around to the west side, then to the north side and parked my vehicle, one of the fledglings took flight from the upper most portion of the YP roof where I had earlier spotted it. It was vocalizing as it took flight, and seconds later, Ruben - (dad) flew past this upper roof elevation with food in his clutches.

The airborne juvenile flew underneath dad and turned and rolled sideways,,, and proceeded to grab the food package from dad while they were both in flight!!

It was a spectacular and truly an amazing thing to see given that the fledglings were having difficulty just holding their altitude only a few days ago!!! The juvenile, now with food in hand - (must have Lorne - Blue tape), flew around upper portion of the entire building, (directly over my head and was illuminated by the setting sun),, gaining altitude, and eventually landed (after its second revolution around the upper portion of the building), on the very top of the peak of the YP most upper rooftop where it had taken off from.

Suddenly, a second juvenile appeared in my view, standing on the very same spot where its sibling had taken off from - (from the same upper peak rooftop, obviously hidden from my view by the white pipes that run up the slopped roof edges). Seconds after the fledgling landed with the food, I watched in amazement the two fledglings share the food in quite a tender family moment. MURPHY’s LAW,,,, NO CAMERA!!!!!! Yes, I didn’t bring my camera this time,, one of the only days throughout the bandings and fledge watches over the past 4 weeks that I didn’t bring my camera :-( !!!!!!!!

Unfortunately, I can’t tell you which juvenile it was, as without the zoom lens and the digital enhancement to blow up the photos or a scope, the height is way tooo high to identify who is who other than being able to identify them as juveniles or adults.

Oh well, I did get to see this with my own eyes, first hand never-the-less, and couldn’t wait to get home to tell Marion that all three are doing just fine!!!

I have attached some CPF stock photos of the Scarborough Yellow Pages building so you have an idea of the height of the building and the actual rooftop peak.
I will NEVER again leave my camera at home when doing site visits!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wow, a single day makes a huge difference! All three fledglings are flying very well indeed!

July 06, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Marion Nash Reports:

July 6th - 2014
Al three fledglings were seen on the nest building when we arrived, with Lorne and Tormey on the upper north face and Petra on the upper west.

Food was dropped off to Tormey and Lorne at 3:00 PM by Linn.

Petra took flight at about 4:15 and flew around to the north face of the building just as one of the parents flew in with food. She must have seen it coming and decided that this one was hers. She grabbed the food in the from adult in the air but with a fist full of food and the added weight, she missed the landing and hooked back west and again. In an effort to try and make the upper concrete ledge, she struggled to gain altitude and eventually lost her altitude and did a face plant into the glass and fluttered down to lower concrete overhang. It didn’t take her long to recover, (only a second) and she started to eat her prize!! There was no way she was sharing any of this with anyone!! Tormey flew in to see if Petra might share but was soon disappointed with her sisters attitude of non-sharing and flew back to the north face pretty upset. She screamed and vocalized the entire flight back!!

After Petra ate, she flew off and got herself up to the upper glass pyramid level on the north east side.

Tormey flew around to the back of the building and Lorne flew to the Kitchen and back to the nest building on the north side with some good strong flights!

Looks like all three fledglings now know how to get altitude from the lower levels. Although the landings are still pretty clumsy, (OUCH),, it would appear there is little worry about them being stranded and in need of rescuing on the ground at this point. Lets hope that they have learned about bumping into windows and will stay clear when the high speed flying and hunting lessons start.

The girls have some catching up to do as their brother Lorne in so far as their flying ability, as Lorne is flying much stronger, but remembering that the girls are younger and heavier. But look out Lorne, as in a few days the sisters will soon catch up, and if there is food involved,, Petra just might give you a very good run for the pigeon :-)

At this point, we have finished the dawn to dusk fledge watch at the Scarborough nest site, and will be only spot checking the site from here on in. The rest is now up to Linn and Ruben. We will be back next week with the cameras and tripods for some “relaxed watching time” to get some decent photos of the best that is yet to come!!

We would encourage any and all watchers to visit, and remember to bring your cameras!!

!!! Tormey - (Red Tape) is still not flying. She is 45 days old today.

July 05, 2014 - Scarborough - Yellow Pages

Marion Nash Reports:

Saturday July 5th - 2014 - Day 10 on the Scarborough Fledge watch
When Mark and I arrived Petra - (Yellow Tape) and Tormey - (Red Tape) were still on the west face of the Yellow Pages building, with Petra on the upper concrete ledge and Tormey still on the middle concrete ledge where we had left her yesterday.

Petra was somewhat active walking back and forth across the ledge but Tormey looked like she was going to sleep all day. After about and hour and a half Petra finally took flight and made it to the glass pyramid flapping to try to balance on the point which she managed to do. I guess she felt a little uncomfortable there with the wind so she hopped down to the ledge below the pyramid and there she stayed for several hours.

Little Tormey had us concerned as she just walked back and forth across her ledge on and off all day, not showing allot of energy. By the end of the day she was starting to show some energy and started playing with some dried up scrap of food looking bored out of her mind but still had not taken flight.

I walked around the building late in the afternoon as Petra had been out of our site for some time and found her on the opposite side of the same ledge and found Loran on the North side upper concrete level. As soon as I got back to our sit spot one of the parents flew in and gave food to Loran who ran off into the corner with his prize to have his lunch. Tormey and Petra got none.

At 6:30pm, Mom flew in with and made several circuits around the building and flew off. That was enough to finally get Petra off her feathered butt and she flew off to the north hooked back and landed on the upper elevation of Yellow Pages just making it.

She looked quite excited and proud of herself. Soon after Mom come in with food and flew to the kitchen and Petra - (Yellow tape) immediately bolted into flight and flew right after her :-) This is one meal she was determined to beat her brother to!!

She made a clumsy very hard landing on the top of the glass arch, but got her lunch. Minutes later Loran - (Blue tape) flew in to squabble with his sister over what ever leftovers she had but it looked like Petra had eaten everything so they sat together for a while.

Tormey - (red tape) finally took a short jump and sort of a flight up to the upper level concrete ledge, approx. 1 floor up and landed just fine. She then walked to the leading edge of the North West glass ledge just below the glass pyramid and a few minutes later Mom finally came in with her food reward.

Everyone has now been fed and seem to settle down for the evening - (including both of the adults), so we left the family high and safe.
Our biggest concern is still Tormey - (Red tape) as she has clearly not taken her second real flight from the Yellow Pages nest building and actually been able to return to any altitude. She is now 44 days old as of today, so she should be flying tomorrow.

Lets hope tomorrow is the day that she will be able to get some real flight time and demonstrate that she is no-longer at risk from coming to the ground and in need of rescuing.

While the photos are not the greatest, (remember that the peregrines are a very long way up, and we are some distance away from the building itself so we can get a decent view of them given the angles involved without succumbing to the serious affects of “Falcon-Neck” as we all refer to it as),, the photos show the coloured tape that we put over their USFW silver leg band to help us identify them at distance.

I have also included a photo of Mark and I, as we have now been in the streets on the various fledge watches and running to the various banding events from Toronto to Windsor to Stoney Creek to Burlington to Kitchener to Mississauga to Pickering to Scarborough for over 8 weeks now. You can see that we are starting to show the affects of the 14 to 16 hours a day - seven days a weeks while in the streets on the fledge watches.

So if you one of us looking a little “odd”, or someone that looks similar,, have pity, its likely one of the CPF fledge watch team :-)