6/16, Final Fledge

The third young red-tailed hawk fledged from the nest at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine fledged on a gloomy Thursday evening, with its siblings looking on.

The nestling was quiet in the early evening, perched and looking around, with its most strenuous activity being trying to twist and stretch its neck to see the sibling perched in the turret just above the nest.

Red-Tail Fledgling and Nestling

Red-Tail Fledgling and Nestling

The third young red-tail was initially unseen, but eventually put in an appearance atop the crossing arch a couple hundred feet west.

Fledgling on the Crossing Arch

Ten or 15 minutes later it disappeared while no one was looking, and then re-appeared on the roof about 30 feet above the fledgling in the turret.

Just after 7:20, the nestling perked up, a lot, and started some enthusiastic wing flapping.

Ready to Fledge

The sibling in the turret had seemed to be snoozing, but it opened its eyes enough to watch the ruckus below.

Red-Tail Nestling and Fledgling

Bursts of flapping followed.

T Minus One Minute

A stumble back into the middle of the nest. Back out onto St. Andrew's hand for another burst of flapping.

T Minus One Minute

Quiet for a moment, and then at 7:28, one flap and go fly.

It was a clean maiden flight. Straight north about 90 yards, maintaining altitude all the way, clearing the trees along 113th St., and landing on the ledge around the edge of the roof of the Plant Pavilion at St. Luke's Hospital.

The new fledgling popped back up almost immediately, looking about at the fresh perspective of the world. Then it decided that with so much room to explore, it was time to do so. First west along the ledge.

Exploring

Then east, down to the corner where the other hawks often like to perch and feed.

Meanwhile, the elder siblings watched from across the street.

Fledglings on the Cathedral Roof

Posted 6/16/2011 08:45:00 PM by Robert

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