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The Burlington Lift Bridge.


2008 Photo Gallery
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Nest Site Summary


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NOTE: Peregrine sightings from 2006-2008 are temporarily unavailable as of April 11, 2009. We are working hard to correct this issue, please check back again soon!

April 19, 2008.

Rob Williams Reports:

I spent some time at the lift bridge this afternoon, from perhaps a little after 3pm until about 5pm. When I arrived, one of the peregrines was sitting on a ledge below the nest box eating. It then flew up to the nest box, where both birds were visible moving around, and the other bird emerged carrying some food in its beak very shortly. This bird (it looked like the female to me) flew to the south tower, and ate the food on a ledge on the north side of that tower, then spent the rest of my time there grooming. From what I could observe, the other bird remained out of sight on the nest box the entire time. This suggests to me that they are probably incubating eggs on the nest box (one bird remaining on the box, quick food exchange, and neither bird eating on the nest, rather nearby). I wouldn't bet my life on it, but it seems the best explanation to me.

April 15, 2008.

CPF Postmaster Reports:

New adult male has been positively identified
We have additional news to report in that the new adult territorial male currently nesting at the Burlington Bridge nest site has been identified as a peregrine that was produced in 2006 – from the Gulf Tower in located in downtown Pittsburgh Pennsylvania. This un-named male was 1 of 5 chicks hatched at this urban nest site along with 3 other male siblings and 1 female in the clutch.

April 14, 2008.

Rob Williams Reports:

Male’s leg band identified and suspect the that there may be egg(s) in the nest box!
I spent some time at the lift bridge again on Monday evening. One of the birds spent some time preening on the bridge, occasionally watching the gulls and pigeons which flew quite close to it at times, then flew up to the nest box. Less than a minute later, a bird emerged and flew across to the south tower to preen. My impression was that this was not the bird who went to the nest box, but unfortunately I could not verify the impression. If true it could have meant a shift change, and the possibility of eggs on the nest box. This would be good news, both that eggs could be present, and even if not, that the birds seemed to be far more interested in the nest box now than the less suitable I-beam. Perhaps this male was more persuasive as to the nest box advantages? :) I will try to keep checking in on them, and verfiy if they may have eggs and be using the nest box.

I have one more piece of good news to relate. I have been able to see the bands on what I suspect is the male, and it is a black band above a green band, with what I believe is a 3 in the black, and a K in the green. I'll keep hoping for a chance to see the bands on the other bird.

March 29, 2008.

Debbie Galama Reports:

3:30 - 6:00 p.m.

For almost the entire 2.5 hrs, the female just sat around, mostly on one of the overhead wires near the south tower, sometimes on the south tower itself, north side, on one of the green ledges. The male would appear every 20 minutes or so, land on a separate perch (usually the nest box ledge) , then briefly fly to visit the female. He got on top of the female on 2 separate visits, for a couple of seconds only. I cannot verify that any actual mating took place.

On one return by the male, who landed on the nest box ledge, the female flew over to join him, then flew back to her wire, where she appeared to be swallowing some food.

On one visit to the nest box ledge, the male landed near the left corner, cowered down so low I could no longer see him (I was viewing from the south side of the canal), then about 10 or 15 seconds later, popped his head up again by the right corner of the ledge - must have scuttled his way across on his belly (scraping?)

When I left at 6:00, the two were perched in exact mirror locations, the female on the south tower, the male on the north; both on the western side, on the outer corner of a protruding green metal box-like structure, open to the west. (the same place you have a picture of a male perched on the CPF website from 2005)

While I was there, a guy fishing (who was not a birder) told me that the male from last year died and told me where the body was (underneath the Skyway bridge, just down the canal towards Hamilton). I checked it out, and there were remains of a raptor body, with one leg, feathers were weatherbeaten and not easy to identify, but seemed too brown to be a peregrine, and the bird was possibly too large. I then found another leg, a match, about 10 feet away. No bands on either leg. I'm mentioning this in case you ever hear through the grapevine of the one-legged male peregrine body by the bridge - I checked it out and it's not Dundas.

The male has quite a wide moustache, barred belly and breast. Appears to be a mature adult. At one point I thought I saw green (band?) on his right leg, but he tucked his leg up under his breast feathers so fast, I can't be sure. I also thought I saw a darker band on his left leg - again, just a possibility. He wasn't around much so I did not get to spend much time looking at him.

Click to enlarge! Click to enlarge!

March 24, 2008.

Rob Williams Reports:

Dundas is not present

I was down at the Burlington lift bridge for a while this afternoon again. Two adult peregrines were present, they spent much of their time moving back and forth on the two towers of the bridge, on the nest box ledge, and the old I beam on the north tower (bobbing around nearly or completely out of sight on it). I also saw one copulation on the overhead wires. There was another couple there with a spotting scope and camera watching them: they told me they had seen multiple copulations, and the two birds had spent a long time moving in and out of the towers, including spots hidden up in the south tower. We all heard a fair bit of chatter from the birds. There was also a hunting male kestrel mostly around the parking lot, but they did not seem to notice or care.

...The shots are not great, but do show that both birds have two feet, and both birds are banded! This would mean that Dundas is NOT the male at the lift bridge this year.

Click to enlarge! Click to enlarge!
Click to enlarge! Click to enlarge!

March 15, 2008.

Debbie Galama Reports:

Birded the Burlington canal area this afternoon, March 15, 2008. Saw the two peregrines, appeared to be a pair, approximately 4:00pm. They were on the Burlington lift canal tower, (the north side of the canal). One was sitting near the top, on the south facing side, on what appeared to be a nesting platform. The second about 10-20 feet directly below, on a ledge just above the rust coloured weight. At least one was calling on and off for at least 15 minutes. They flew on and off, between the tower and the neighbouring hydro tower, then one flew off towards the Skyway bridge. The other also flew off. 10 minutes later one was back on the nesting ledge again.

March 15, 2008.

Rob Williams Reports:

I have been down to the Burlington lift bridge on a number of occasions over the fall and winter. During this time I have seen two adult peregrines, occasionally they 'cooperatively' hunt (although judging by the screaming of the bird without the meal, and the lack of sharing the meal I'm not sure cooperative is the appropriate term). On this Wednesday I was by the bridge again during the afternoon, and saw an adult Cooper's hawk fly in from the skyway bridge, keeping the pigeons stirred up. It landed on the south tower of the bridge, and within a minute or two an adult peregrine (with two legs) flew in from the skyway area, landed in the hydro tower near the south tower of the bridge, then flew in to buzz the cooper's. The cooper's was not struck (that I could see), and it wasn't the most aggressive pursuit, but the cooper's was definately told it wasn't welcome in the area, and escorted away to parts unknown. The peregrine returned, remained near the bridge for a few more minutes before disappearing. I have not been able to verify that one of the adult peregrines is still Dundas, and the various other birders and photographers I've met around town don't seem to know if he is still one of the birds or not. That there are two adults is well known, and they are often observed near the bridge.

Given the behaviour of this peregrine, I would assume it had appeared directly in response to the cooper's, so must have been within observation of the bridge, and considers it defensable territory, which leads me to suspect that whatever the pair, they will try nesting at the location again this year.