Tuesday, April 15, 2014


It appears that incubation is now in full swing. I was asked about why they were ignoring the eggs a couple days ago. I found this explanation on the Boise peregrine page. Based on this, it appears we will only have three eggs this year. I hope Bob Walter's stops by to comment on this. Happy Tax Day.

Typically, the falcons do not begin incubating until the third or fourth egg arrives so that all the eggs hatch about the same time. Otherwise, the bigger, first-hatched chick would have an unfair advantage at feeding time over the smaller, last-hatched chick. You will see both adults sitting on the eggs at times over the next few days but incubation does not begin in earnest until the laying period ends.

The eggs are capable of withstanding temperatures below freezing. The chicks do not develop much inside the egg until incubation begins. Occasionally, the eggs will appear to be left alone for short periods but, even when the adults are out of camera range, you can rest assured that at least one is always nearby to protect the nest.

Mom, serious about incubation.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Egg No. 3

I turned on the nest cam about 7:25 MT to see Dad getting up off eggs, and there are three now. So I am guessing it has been there a little while. He is has settled back down again but I snapped this before he did.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Egg 2

Egg No. 2 arrived this afternoon! We are so thankful to skygirlblue for grabbing videos!! This new Dad is very cute. I think it must be his first family.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

KSL Interview

You can't keep Bob away from the camera. This was a good spot with a little bit of the peregrines history. BTW, egg No. 1 arrived early this morning, about 7:45.


Bonding Video

Hi again, thought I would share a little video shared on the BCAW site from yesterday. We've seen this behavior before... seems a little bonding ceremony over the nest is in order.


Cameras are ON!

Good Morning!

The nesting season kicked off this weekend and our cameras are live. You can access them directly from http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid2310931541001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAAjP0hvGE~,N-ZbNsw4qBprGx4FBqVjCHKnXz1jxdax&bctid=3427136757001

or go http://wildlife.utah.gov/learn-more/peregrine-cam.html

The new male we saw arrive late last season seems to be a keeper. Here he is snoozing in the box over the weekend. As I opened the cam this morning, he's on the ledge of the box looking a little wet or maybe just ruffled for warmth.
The second photo was taken a few weeks ago up on one the tall office buildings.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Welcome to 2014

The cameras will be turned on in early April, right after the conferences are over.

This was posted on the SLC Falcon Facebook page a few weeks ago. Sorry about the bad news but it's good to know our female appears to have a new mate and has been visiting the nest box over the winter. Coverage of the 2014 season will begin in late April ~ see you then.

We have some sad news concerning our own SLC peregrine falcons. The male adult peregrine falcon (aka Dad) has been laid to rest. Bob, the rehabilitator and the rescue team went to great lengths to save and enable dad to be used as an education bird, but foot problems, some of which were undoubtedly a result of balance difficulties associated with the dislocated shoulder, proved to make that best hope impossible. We didn't want him suffering. The good news is we still expect a pair in the box this year. The female has been spotted downtown with a new male falcon. The cameras will hopefully come on sometime in April--not too long.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

October Update - Mom still Downtown

Hello, I thought I would drop some notes in a post that I received from Bob plus some of the Facebook updates from the Wildlife page. These are in order of most recent going back to early September. I requested an update on Dad. I will post when I receive it.

-FYI - 4:21 p.m. on Tues., October 22: my 1st of the season rough-legged hawk observed soaring just south of the northern boundary (2200 North St.) of the Salt Lake City International Airport, "roughies" are fairly common winter visitants in Utah

-1:48 - 2:07 p.m. on Tues., Oct. 22:
2013 adult female perched on last k in words Key Bank on north face of the Key Bank Tower

-SLC Peregrine Falcon Cam fans ... new (first) California condor webcam in the wild:
Check it out ... let 'em know if you see something interesting!

-I drove downtown (about 12:30 p.m.) to identify the reported bird on the top of a car yesterday, October 16. Unfortunately, I was a moment too late since the car pulled away (to the west) from my vantage point on the east side of Main Street.  However, with the help of able co-worker Patricia Engel (who greatly enlarged the posted photo), we were able to identify the bird. Upon close inspection of the enlarged photo, we were able to agree that it appeared to be a common nighthawk ... an aerial insectivore that nests on leafy, or gravelly ground in woodlands (as well as on flat-topped, gravel, urban roofs) and occasionally shows up as a prey item in the diet of the Salt Lake City peregrine falcons. The broad, white bar on either wing of the nighthawk is an easy to spot feature in peregrine prey collections that I've made through the years.
-I've observed a lone peregrine with some regularity over the last few weeks in the downtown SLC area. I just returned from there having observed (1:27 p.m. on Wed., October 9) an adult peregrine that looked like Mom of 2013 (obvious, white cheek patches and a wide/broad, buffy-colored tip o' the tail) perched, where I have spotted a lone bird often, on the Key Bank Tower (KBT) sign on the east face of the KBT.
She's there now, on the south facing sign.  Sorry for the poor quality photo.
Thanks to Justin Matkin for photo taken October 10.

-I observed an adult on the north-facing Key Bank Tower sign on Tuesday, Sept. 24. On Sept. 13, I saw a young-of-the-year peregrine perched on one of the lattice-type power line structures off 3200 W. just north of the Salt Lake City International Airport. 
-6:30 - 6:52 p.m. on September 11, 2013: adult female (presumed to be the 2014 "Mom" since sported no bands and exhibited the highly recognizable, buffy-tipped tail) observed perched atop the tallest column (farthest to east) at the west end on the north face of the Zions Bank Tower 
 -The adult female (Mom), or a lookalike, was spotted on the southeast, "shoulder" corner (south face) of the tall Church Office Bulding (COB) at 7:00 p.m. on September 4. At 7:46 p.m., Mom was observed making the short flight to a presumed roost site to the west below the tinted glass at a point where the shoulder level of the building intersects the main column ... I've observed adults at roost on either side of the central column of the COB at that level on the south face of the COB on numerous occasions in the past. Mom, or the lookalike, may have been the peregrine that was reported to me by Church Security as "stuck" within the observation deck on the west side of the COB earlier in the evening, sometime around 6:00 p.m. When a Security officer accompanied me to the area earlier (around 7:00 p.m.), the bird could not be found and it was assumed that somehow (and finally since the time that it was reported to me) it had managed to bolt/vault over and above the observation deck perimeter walls to attain the freedom of unobstructed, open air. No other peregrines were observed in the area at/on all the usual places so I'm fairly certain that Mom was indeed the earlier-reported trapped bird.

Comment from co-worker upon hearing my report of the incident: tell her to knock that (getting trapped) off/stop it! Amen, but, of course, they'll do what they do!!!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Note from Bob

I am without Internet while visiting family but wanted to pass along a note from Bob.

"Please rest assured that we are not trying to avoid commenting on Dad's status.

We are continuing to contact and discuss his condition with experts and carefully considering our options. His shoulder and elbow injuries are, after all, serious and we do not want to rush to a decision.

I spoke to Jo last evening and she reported that he is doing well, eating well and behaving calmly. That makes the aforementioned contacts and discussions easier in the sense that we do not have to hastily reach a hard decision as to Dad's fate right now."

Monday, July 15, 2013

Sad News

I am so very sorry to report that Solo did not make it. Here is the official note from Bob Walters of Utah Division of Wildlife Resources:

On July 13, 2013, Solo the only, young-of-the-year peregrine falcon to hatch at the Joseph Smith Memorial Building (JSMB) this year, died from injuries received on July 3rd. The injuries were a result of a high speed impact into the north face of the Zion’s Bank Tower located due south of the JSMB. Following his injury and rescue, Solo was transported to a Salt Lake City rehabilitation facility where supportive therapies were started under the care of Jo Stoddard. X-rays were taken on July 5. While no fractures were evidenced, Solo suffered soft tissue, nerve and spinal cord injuries. These injuries resulted in flaccid paralysis of both legs, incontinence and head trauma. While some slight improvement in the paralysis was detected over the 10 day holding period, other systems began to shut down. He was found dead midday on Saturday.

Robert Walters
July 15, 2013

Bob will try to answer questions if you have any. Please leave them in the comments section. I have no update on Dad. Mom has been seen in several locations over the weekend. No sight of the new male though.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Update from Bob

Hi Everyone,
Just thought I'd move a comment up here that Bob left today.

06:53 - 07:27 a.m. this morning, July 9: adult female (Mom) observed feeding and then loafing on the key icon that precedes the words Key Bank Tower (west face of the Key Bank Tower), adult boyfriend was not observed

FYI - I collected the only, remaining, entire egg today at 1:43 p.m. from the nest box. It weighs very little (contents desiccated?), but I intend to determine if analysis is possible. Who knows ... we may learn something! Adult(s) not observed at ground level in the usual places as I entered the JSMB and no protest mounted at man in (at rear of) nest box by either the adult female, or her boyfriend.

No new news on Solo, or Dad, but I'll update as soon as possible.


Saturday, July 6, 2013

Fan Mail from Some Flounder

This blog is written by a VOLUNTEER that puts in 100+ hours of VOLUNTEER time before, during and after Fledge Week with the team, networking with other birding folks, taking and editing photos, updating the blog so that ALL the people who have watched the cameras over the course of the nest season can still feel like they are part of the action... This blog is for the common folk. Those of us who don't need a degree in ornithology to enjoy and appreciate nature. I started it because I was downtown VOLUNTEERING and wanted to share some of the experience. The State of Utah does not pay me for my hours nor do they have anything to do with this blog. NOBODY has a right to complain about anything with this program if you haven't had your 'boots on the ground' during fledge week. (This is written in response to someone who complained that my blog wasn't professional. To the rest of my readers, thank you for being here.)

Phew, now that I got that off my chest. BTW, any further professional explanation of Solo or Dad's conditions can be requested directly from Bob Walters. I am not a wildlife biologist, but I might have stayed at a Holiday Inn Express.

Here are a couple of photos caught on the cams yesterday of the new male in and leaving the nest box. Note he has no metal bands so he is not a returning juvenile from a prior nest season.

Solo and Dad Update

Bob sent out this note yesterday:
"Solo: Xray(s) revealed no lesions, no fractures and no dislocations.

Wings appear okay ... this after Bob mentioned noticing a "mouse" on Solo's right wing when upon the JSMB (east-facing, south interior scalloped edge) before his flight to the window ledge on the west face of of the JSMB and later a report of a drooped wing on that same ledge before the flight where he bumped into glass on the Zion's Bank Tower  

What's next ? continue supportive therapy (fluid and food), see if Solo improves with time. 

Interesting that: Solo weighed in at 790 grams ... on border between male and female weight, JoAnn said that Solo looked huge when compared to Dad, when positioned side to side. So, Solo may not be a male, but a female with skinny legs. I'm convinced that all that heat contributed in a major way to Solo's problems and for that matter maybe it even figured into his Dad's problem too.

We wait and see if improves by staying in touch with JoAnn, just to say it: there is no guarantee that he can re-enter the program and certainly not any time soon.

Dad: Xray(s) revealed a dislocated shoulder (left wing) Xrays and clinical notes have been sent to several experts in the U.S.A. and Joann is awaiting feedback. Dad continues to do well ... eating, etc."

Friday, July 5, 2013

New Guy?

Mary Anne caught some video of a bird in the box this morning. At first I thought it was Mom, but something seemed different. I cropped an image from it and also took an image from a June 20 video of Mom. I think these are two different birds. I pasted video below as well. Any opinions?

Thursday, July 4, 2013

July 4 Update

Bob said that there is nothing new on Solo. He is due for x-rays tomorrow. He said that one our watchers was downtown today and saw Mom and the new male. I hope to go there tomorrow to get a photo. This is another photo shared with me from the rescue of Solo on Tuesday.

Happy Independence Day to all.