The last two days provided evidence of red-tail mamas brooding eggs at two Manhattan nests.
Friday at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine was almost quiet, but every now and then I could see the tips of some tail feathers wiggling above the edge of the nest, and once Isolde poked her head just high enough that I could see her face. It seemed like she was really and truly hunkered down on some eggs. Sure enough, earlier in the day, James had managed to get a picture of a switch-off as she and Norman briefly traded egg-warming duties.
Late Saturday afternoon, I headed up to Dyckman St. to see if the Highbridge Park-Swindler Cove red-tail nest was still there after the nasty rain storm a week ago (I had found it in good shape back in February) and whether Martha might be brooding, too. Barely had I arrived there than there was a switch-off. Apparently Martha was returning from a rest and/or dinner break and took back over from George. She stayed put, with only her head to sometimes be seen during the next 45 minutes.
Elsewhere, Bruce found the Riverside Park Boat Basin mama hawk brooding last Monday. The 2011 nesting season is under way, and baby hawks should be hatching hatch between April 11 and 20.