Early Saturday evening, I checked on the uptown red-tailed hawk nest across from J. Hood Wright Park. A week earlier I could not decide whether there had been a hatch, but this time it was more than evident. About 15 minutes after I arrived, the mama hawk got up and started a feed.
And it was a long feeding: over 20 minutes and close to 25. There must be more than one nestling there.
About halfway through, the clouds moved in again and the excellent sunset light was lost.
After the feeding, the mother left the nest for a while. How long, I wasn't sure, because both she and her mate were flying in and out and I could not keep track of who was whom.
First a hawk landed on the fire escape a floor done from the nest and posed for a photo when an apartment resident leaned out her window with a camera phone. The other adult came flying in but zigged in mid-air and took off. The hawk on the fire escape hopped up a floor to a window sill.
The other hawk returned and perched on the railing just above the nest.
The window hawk took off, leaving the one on the fire escape.
And then both hawks were perched on the trailing, checking out the nest interior and rail-walking and hopping.
Okay, 20 minutes after the feeding was over we finally know which one is the female, because she hopped down into the nest and settled in to keep the kids warm. Then the male departed for the evening.