6/3, The Quiet Fledgling

Monday evening after the cloudburst found the red-tailed hawk fledgling at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine still perching in the same area where he had alit on Saturday afternoon. Word from other hawkwatchers was that he had been there all day Sunday, so it indeed like he was an accidental early fledge. Nevertheless, the signs are that he's being fed by the parents, so one hopes he'll make the 10-ft flight onto a tree-branch Tuesday.


All five members of the hawk family put in appearances. Isolde landed in the turret about the nest soon after I arrived. While I was angling for a better place to take a picture, the male paid a very quick visit to the turret also. Isolde then began a series of flights back and forth across 113th St. First over to the Minturn Pavilion roof for a few minutes.

June 3

Back to the cross on St. Saviour Chapel for a minute and return north to the Plant Pavilion.


Since she was carrying food, was she trying to lure one of the two remaining nestlings into making its first flight? If so, no dice. Another zig-zag across the street and then she flew into the nest. Evidently the nestlings were full, as there was no sign that they started eating.

Meanwhile down below, the fledgling was quiet. No squeep-ing as mom flew overhead, and it looked like he must have been fed recently. At times he had his eyes closed and looked like he was napping. Of course, the ambulances that passed by every 20 minutes or so would have prevented a good snooze.


Isolde left the nest and perched on the hospital roof down by the ER for a while. The two nestlings were quiet for a bit and then one decided to exercise its wings.


A couple minutes of excitement.


And then both nestlings retreated so far into the nest that they couldn't be seen from any angle.

A half hour later Isolde paid another visit to check on the nest, and also stared down at the fledgling to see how he was doing before she departed again. The nestlings perked back up but did nothing more exciting than preen. As the sky darkened, the fledgling started moving about. The routine was much like Saturday evening as he hopped on and off a ledge on the side of St. Boniface chapel, looked up several times as if trying to figure out to get up on a chapel eave. But no attempt to fly out and perch in a tree.

Posted 6/04/2013 01:57:00 AM by Robert

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