Over the last few weeks…

A young American Kestrel.  Photo by Cleve Nash

A young American Kestrel.  Photo by Cleve Nash

I’ve been away from the notebook and pen for some time tying up some loose ends. I’ll try to get you up to speed. Over the last few weeks things have been slow. The adults have chased off all of their young on both sides of “the rock.” Yesterday there were five Red-tailed Hawks circling the rock up high. Both pairs of falcons were busy chasing them with a lot of vocalizing and high speed stoops.
A young female Kestrel circled the rock from seaward passing right in front of the male and female resident falcons and they did not give chase. The Kestrel, previously known as a sparrow hawk, landed in a bare willow at the top of a rock sprawl and spent twenty minutes just looking around still in plain sight of the falcons and they still did not give chase. The Kestrel left by way of the sand spit, probably a juvenile looking for a home.
The first of the migrating birds of prey have started to arrive along the Central Coast of California. White-tailed Kites, Ferruginous Hawks, Merlins, Cooper’s and Sharp-shinned Hawks. A few flocks of ducks, but no geese yet in the estuary.
Heather has been supporting the eye surgeons from here to UCLA with her fourth lens replacement to come next week. We all wish her the best of luck.
Happy trails, Bob

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About Pacific Coast Peregrine Watch

The Pacific Coast Peregrine Watch is here to inform birders, students and all people who are eager to know about these handsome peregrines. We want you to enjoy and be able to use our on-site powerful spotting scopes. We are available to answer your questions about the pair of falcons that have been observed for many years.

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3 Responses to Over the last few weeks…

  1. Beedie says:

    Interesting post Bob. Why do the Falcons chase their young away? Is this common behavior with all Raptor parents?

    • To address the question of “Why do they drive their young off.”
      No, it’s not common with all parents. Some raptors are communal, i.e. Bald Eagles. However, Golden Eagles do drive off their young. This creates distribution of the species. In previous years when they’ve banded the young at Morro Rock, they have been found as far as San Diego, Santa Barbara and Lompoc. Contact Steve Schubert for other sightings.

      • Beedie says:

        Thank you for the response. Interesting. I thought maybe due to competition for food sources or to encourage independence. Maybe all of the above. :O) Thanks again for the response. I’m learning so much from this blog.

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