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NEST SITE: Please help us keep track of the
peregrines! We welcome your observations of this pair (or any other peregrines) by
Please help us keep track of the peregrines! We welcome your observations of this pair (or any other peregrines) by email
2007 Nest site location: Both adults are yet to be positively identified, but are suspected to be those below:
The female is named Lawrie and she was born in Clarkson, Mississauga. Her parents are Nate and Eva, the latter of whom is still at the Clarkson nest site. Nate was a star of Project Release and Project Track'em until he settled in Mississauga. Unfortunately, he passed away in 2005. Lawrie is Nate's first-born child; she was banded on July 22nd, 2003.
The male at this nest site is named Rueben, and he is from the nest site at the Busch agricultural complex in Manitowoc, Manitowoc Country, Wisconsin. He was banded on May 9th, 2003, and has a black-over-green band on his left leg
Tuesday November 06, 2007
Mark Nash reports: Sorry for the bad photos, but they were taken last night – (November 6th) at 4:47 pm as the dark overcast and rain moved in. Please excuse the incorrect time and date stamping on one of the photos, as both the date and time stamp on the photo is incorrect.
While it was raining when the shots were taken, and both birds were very wet and appeared to be juvenile in plumage & colour, they are the same birds that I observed last week on two other occasions. There is one adult – (full blown adult coloured plumage),,, and one juvenile in its brown coloured plumage. Sadly, I did not have the scope with me, and the light was so poor that the camera would not auto focus when I zoomed in closer. Sadly, no way to manual focus on this camera.
While utilizing the bins, I was able to get yet another good look at their plumage colour/markings, as well as being able to see their band colours, sadly just not enough magnification with the bins to see the digits on their bands.
I have confirmed for a second time that Both birds have a “RED” colour marker tape over their silver USFW band, in addition to both birds having a BLACK OVER GREEN colour marker bands on the other leg. It is obvious that they are from the USA given the Black over Green colour marker bands.
They have both been regularly roosting on the Warden Ave. & Eglinton Ave water storage tank, literally just blocks from the Scarborough hack site at Pharmacy Ave & Eglinton in the east end of Toronto. These Pefa’s are not to be confused with this years hacked Pefa’s, as All of the Scarborough hacked Pefa’s have now dispersed and have not been seen for the most parts of a month. All four hacked birds survived and took their last food offering on October 2nd /2007. This is just about the time frame that these two new Pefa’s arrived on site and were being observed by the Taxi employees at Warden and Eglinton offices.
I’m being told by the employees of the Taxi firm that occupy the offices located just south of the parking – (less than 30 yards south of the water storage tank tower), that they are seeing both Pefa’s at various times of the day, and that they have been regularly roosting on the tank most every day for the past 4 weeks.
Sadly, I have not been able to determine the sex of each bird as yet, (although one is clearly a male, and the second is clearly a female),, as both the distances and the bright while background of the storage tank has presented quite a challenge indeed. With having both the identical coloured bands – this is a challenge, as even on a dull no light day, the white glare back from the tank itself is difficult to get a real good comparison for the two birds.
Needless to say, I will endeavor to get an ID on these two. I have yet to be “skunked” in ten years. It might appear that they may stay around this winter, as they have obviously come “north” on their dispersal.
**As a footnote, the Scarborough hack box is still in place at Pharmacy Ave, with the bars having been removed last week. Bell Canada management on site has agreed to allow us to keep the box in place until further notice, and would welcome another family of peregrines should they take an interest in the facilities.
The hack box now appears to be a “very large nest box”, and who knows, just may be of interest to this potential new pair next spring. Their roosting spot on this water storage tank has a direct line of sight to the box, and is less than a 20 second flight for these guys – (as the peregrine flies).
We have been given a OK by Bell - starting in December to make the Scarborough hack site pages “for public viewing” on the CPF web site, and these updates will be posted to the existing hack site observations and photo galleries that we have been logging during the duration of the 2007 hack.
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the 2007 Scarborough Photo Gallery.
Friday November 02, 2007
Mark Nash reports: This past Monday, and again yesterday – (November 1st/2007), I have been on sight in an effort to identify the band numbers of TWO new peregrines that have been roosting on the water tower / water storage tank at Warden Ave & Eglinton in Scarborough. I have been able to get a real good look at both Pefa’s while they were both in my bin view at the same time, roosting on the south side and underneath of the water storage tank. Sadly, I did not have my spotting scope or fresh batteries in the camera.
One Pefa is a full blown adult plumage, and the second Pefa is a juvenile – (full brown juvenile plumage). The adult Pefa has “RED” coloured tape on its USFW band, and a Black over Green coloured band on its left leg – CONFIRMED! The juvenile ALSO HAS “RED” coloured tape on its USFW band – (right leg),, and also has a Black over Green coloured band on it left leg – CONFIRMED!
My positioning was to the south of the water storage tank in a parking lot that allows observation almost “underneath” the tank itself. The taxi office employees that have an office within this parking area – (actually using this parking lot) that I spoke to said that the birds have been hanging around for several weeks now, and can be seen most every day of the week. We are trying to identify the Back over Green band numbers for these two Pefa’s, as they are not Canadian birds.
This HUGE WHITE WATER STORAGE TANK is just south of Eglinton Ave, East site of Warden Ave. It can be seen from miles away in any direction. New York State, Ohio, Penn., and Wisconsin have all used Black over Green coloured bands. Any assistance that you can provide for observations if you are in the area, or can visit the area would be most helpful indeed. Please don’t hesitate to pass this e-mail along to others that might be interested in helping.
Monday April 23, 2007
Charlie Adey reports: For the record.
I saw one Peregrine on the North/East corner of Yellow Pages Bldg. this AM . Watched 10:30-11:00. No sign of second bird.It mostly preened and perched and once dropped into the well out of sight for a minute. No scope at the time , will have to check out another day.
Thursday April 12, 2007
The Webmaster reports: The 2007 Scarborough Photo Gallery has been created.
Sunday April 1, 2007
Mark Nash reports: Their new nest location has been located!!
With a huge thank you to all of those watches that have been sending in their reports on the peregrine activity in north east Scarborough, and the dedicated efforts of Bruce Massey who has spent many hours in the field on the road following up on each and every one of the reports, we have finally identified the new territory / nest location of the Scarborough peregrines.
I was finally able to attend the site on Sunday April 1st/2007, and was able to confirm Bruce’s other observations that he has been documenting over the past week. A real seek and find has been ongoing for the past months to identify the exact area and then the exact building that the peregrines have chosen for their new nesting site.
Observations have confirmed that the adult pair are in serious courtship routine, with copulation and egg fertilization is in full swing. The nest location is at Milner and Markham Road in Scarborough, atop of the Yellow Pages building. While we have yet to identify the identity of the adults, although the female peregrine shares a striking resemblance to that of Lawrie, (the same female from the Pharmacy Ave & Eglinton nest in 2005 & 2006).
Lawrie was produced at the St. Lawrence nest site in Mississauga Ontario in 2003, and is the full daughter of Nate. Nate was hacked released from the CPF ‘s peregrine hack site atop the Richmond Hill city hall in 1999. Nate was also the super star in the CPF satellite tracking program, in which he was tracked via satellite back and forth from Ontario to Columbia South America for three separate seasons. He finally achieved adult hood, attracted a mate and nested at the St. Lawrence Cement plant in Mississauga Ontario.
Sadly the height of the Yellow pages building and the upper ledges is so high that it has been very difficult to obtain any band number identification information that would help us identify the origin and any know history of the birds. We will keep trying.
Mark Nash reports: Lawrie and Ruben have been located!
With a huge thank you to Elli who has made contact with us about some very interesting news about two falcons that have been spending allot of time around her place of residence in the McCowan and Hwy.401 area.
After researching the band numbers of one of the peregrines, we have been able to confirm that the peregrines identity is none other than Lawrie from the Scarborough nest site. The partial band number of her male partner matches the band number of her mate identified as Ruben
Wednesday August 2, 2006
Ellie reports: The attached photos were taken on Wednesday August 2, 2006, in the area of McCowan and 401 around 6:00 p.m. Upon discovering Lawrie sitting on the ledge in front of my window, I immediately realized she wasn't a normal bird and I was able to take a few photos of her while she sat perched and spent a few hours posing for the pictures! She then returned August 9, 2006 for a second visit and once again I was able to capture photos of her. I hope you all enjoy the recent photos of Lawrie and confirmation of her well being. We will continue to keep a look out for our little friend.
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the 2006 Scarborough Photo Gallery.
Friday May 26, 2006
Mark Nash reports: Confirmed - failed nest
It is with sadness that I must report that the Scarborough nest site has in fact failed this year. Over the past ten days, Bruce has been reporting that the Lawrie and Ruben have spent much of the time off the nest ledge, showing very little interest in any incubation activities. Based on the full time incubation observations, we expected a hatch no later than May 16th, but of course it has not happened.
With many thanks to our good friends at Bell, I was able to attend the upper roof area to get a detailed look at the ledge, and as suspected, based on the absence of any peregrines activity, the nest ledge was empty. There were no eggs or no adults anywhere to be seen. I was able to take number of photographs of the nest ledge, and I must say, that it is sure luck that the Lawrie and Ruben were successful last year, as the ledge was void of any substrate material, showing only a small bit of brown mossy material on top of the bare metal. It was obvious throughout the incubation period, that most of our observations of the pair had them constantly chasing and collecting eggs to gather them together so they could incubate them. We are currently in conversation with the powers to be regarding the install of a small nest tray, similar to the one at the Etobicoke nest site that has provided the nesting adult pair a good nesting base.
Stay tuned for additional news.
Sunday May 14, 2006
Mark Nash reports: I met with Bruce Massey this afternoon, as he had called me today indicating that there was some very strange behavior observed from the Scarborough adult pair. Arrived later afternoon, and stayed for an hour and certainly agree that Lawrie and Ruben were behaving very strange. They wee very unsettled, and if I didn’t know better, I would have thought that Lawrie had in fact abandoned the nest, as she refused to spend any time incubating. Ruben took up the incubation duties most all day, with Lawrie observed either not at all, or quick “touch and goes” from the nest ledge. Two eggs were still visible from our observation point, and still not indication of a hatch was observed. We will keep be keeping a very close eye on the situation over the next couple of days.
Friday May 12, 2006
Bruce Massey reports: Mid afternoon observations
Despite the fact that we expected a hatch to have taken place by this date, both adults were observed in their normal routine with no unusual behavior by either. Lawrie was observed spending much of her time still in incubation mode, with at least two eggs visible during her shuffling and repositioning on the nest bowl. While she did seem more unsettled today, it appears that there has not been a hatch as yet.
We are expecting a hatch any day now!!
Mark Nash reports: Afternoon observations
After speaking with Bruce earlier on in the day, I decided to stop at the Scarborough nest site on the way home to do a quickly spot check. After several hours of watching, it was still apparent that there has yet to be a hatch, but Lawrie was restless during her incubation duties. A hatch is very close!
Sunday May 7, 2006
Mark Nash reports: After a quick spot check this afternoon, I had an opportunity to spend several hours on site to try out the new scope. Quite thrilling actually, with a 25x75 eye piece, and a 100mm objective lens really does provide an incredible view from a far!! I found Lawrie sound asleep with her head resting on the edge of the nest bowl. Rueben was observed roosting & preening on the communication tower to the east of the nest building, (in the middle of a very aggressive preen fest), obviously very concerned about his personal hygiene. At approx. 3 pm, I witnessed a changing of the guard, and Lawrie was able to get off the incubation duties and stretch her wings, as she flew over to the No-Frills roof top, and roosted on one of the lights atop of the building roof.
** Several photos were taken of both Lawrie on the nest, and atop of the No-Frills roof. Her band numbers were easily noted with the new scope, and it was confirmed that it was Lawrie.
It was quite obvious by the end of my watching that there is still no evidence of a hatch, as the pair settled down quite quickly at the change, and at no time over the four plus hours that I was on site, did I see any food go into the nest ledge. We are expecting a hatch some time next week – May 8th to May 12th.
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the 2006 Scarborough Photo Gallery.
Sunday April 30, 2006
John Wood reports: On Sunday April 30th/2006, I arrived at around 12:45. While pulling into the parking lot, I saw the Male leaving in a South West direction with something that looked like a mouse or maybe a small bird in It's bill. I waited patiently for a good hour and a half before there was any sign of activity. At around 2:15, I spotted a Turkey Vulture heading west to east over my head and decided to get a couple of shots. Just as I got the first shot off. Wow! Rueben came out of nowhere and attacked. The scavenger disappeared immediately and at that point I managed to get a couple of shots of the protector before he perched on the tower to oversee the entire area. Every day in the field is a learning experience. I've included some Photos of the performance!
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the 2006 Scarborough Photo Gallery.
Saturday April 29, 2006
John Wood reports: I spent a few hours this Weekend of the 29th April observing and photographing those truly incredible raptors. On Saturday, I arrived around 11 A.M. when at that time I believe Rueben was taking his turn on the nest. Assuming that the male must share the duty? At that time, while I was getting the camera out of my vehicle, Lawry flew around a couple of times and conveniently perched on the "B" not far from the nest to preen herself. (Think it was Laurie). Correct me if I'm wrong? She sat there for a good 20 minutes before winging off over me. My jaw dropped as she passed over my head by just a few metres! My first thought was that she was trying to scare me off (if I'd only had my other camera ready with the shorter lens). At that point I wheeled around and looked as she pulled up just short of a Ground Hog who was browsing close to the fence by the Petrocan. She then flew off to the south and I proceeded to the grocery store.
(Webmaster's note:) A photo has been added to the 2006 Scarborough Photo Gallery.
Monday April 24, 2006
Mark Nash reports: A good day despite the off again on again rain, as the adult male “Rueben” spent some of his day chasing off the local avian inhabitants today, as a pair of crows found out in short order. Rueben dove from the communication tower on an unsuspecting pair of crows as they casually crossed that imaginary line that separates the rest of the world from “peregrine territory”.
The crows were quickly dispatched, as he pursued them off to the north east out of my view.
Footnote regarding a hatch: we re expecting a hatch some time during the first week of May, - estimating May 6th to May 10th based the start of Lawrie’s full time incubation.
Wednesday April 12, 2006
Bruce Massey reports: A good for watching, as both Rueben and Lawrie were active today, despite the fact that Lawrie has been in full time incubation mode for over a week. Both adults are incredibly protective over the territory, as we observed over dozen flights with the pair going after other birds as they cross over that imaginary territorial line. On several different occasions, even Lawrie left her incubation duties to join Rueben in his pursuit and territorial defending activities. You would think that the resident crows would have learned!!
Tuesday April 4, 2006
Mark Nash & Bruce Massey report: Full time incubation has started!
Today the behavior of the two adults have changed telling yet another story. We can confirm that Lawrie is finally in full time incubation. Seeing only just the top of her head while she is on the nest ledge, she is finally started her full time incubation. Looking for first week of May hatch date. Stay tuned……………………
Thursday March 30, 2006
Bruce Massey reports: Egg production has begun!
Observed several copulations today! Egg laying is in progress, as both adults were very active on and off the nest ledge today. We watched Lawrie fly to the top of the telephone/hydro poles on Pharmacy Ave., where she was accompanied by Rueben, and copulation was observed. Rueben was then observed flying back to the nest ledge with much vocalization in the air, followed by Lawrie.
Lawrie was observed involved in further scraping of the nest ledge, spending parts of day laying down for short periods of time.
Mark Nash reports: I met up with Bruce in the late afternoon and got an update regarding the copulation activity. Apparently Bruce has been watching the pair most of the early afternoon involved in courtship activities, including several copulations atop of the hydro poles on Pharmacy Ave. Spent several hours on site, with the scope, and watched the pair both on and off the nest ledge with allot of vocalizing, and two copulations. Interestingly, Rueben was observed spending allot of his roosting time perched on the bare branches of the trees in the front of the building. We did not observe this behavior last year.
Monday April 17, 2006
Saturday April 15, 2006
Wednesday March 29, 2006
Frank Butson reports: I went to check on Rueben and Lawrie today, arriving at about 11:40am, I immediately saw Rueben on the nest ledge,walking around. I looked around for Lawrie but couldnt see her immediately.
At 11:50am Rueben was observed flying from the nest ledge to the last large desciduous tree, closest the car wash, where he landed next to Lawrie. There was a mating and Rueben flew off shortly after back to the nest ledge. Rueben called from the nest ledge.
12 noon Rueben dropped and flew to the first desciduous tree nearest the Bell building, where he perched briefly. He soon left and went on a hunting excursion, buzzing pigeons.
12:45 I left with Lawrie still in the tree,majestically looking over her territory.
Staff I spoke with mentioned that the pair had been mating often. And had been seen perched in various tree of late,something I thought abit odd.
Saturday March 4, 2006
Carol Horner reports: Over the last few weeks I have made periodic checks for the Peregrine Falcons at Pharmacy and Eglinton. Usually one or both can be found on the south side of the Bell building.This afternoon as I drove south on Pharmacy, 2 Peregrines were harrasing 2 separate flocks of Rock Pigeons in the area of Pharmacy and Lawrence. Presumably the same pair, which was absent from the Bell building at the time.
Monday January 16, 2006
David Shilman reports: I saw a Peregrine flying over the intersection of Pharmacy and Eglinton carrying a Rock Pigeon. It landed on a light standard in the parking lot on the SW corner, and began to eat it.
Sunday October 2, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: A quick visit at the Scarborough nest site, and observed both adults on the nest building and communications tower to the east. Nice to see that they are still both around enjoying the fall colours. It would appear that they can also be added to the list of adult territorial birds that won't be migrating south for the winter. You know what they say, "Location, Location, Location"!
Friday September 9, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Juvenile Mortality
Sad news to report, as news comes in from Mark Heaton from the OMNR that a young juvenile peregrine falcon has died as a results of injuries. Later identified by her band number as "Loki", one of the three peregrines produced at the Scarborough nest site this year - 2005.
It would appear that the young female peregrine was picked up some time around Aug. 24th in the Low banks area (around the Vineland area in southwestern Ontario) suffering from an exposed fracture and infections. Sadly, after several days of treatment, the Ontario Veterinary College was not able to repair and save Loki, and had to put the bird down.
Thursday September 1, 2005
Mark Nash reports: With fall just around the corner, reports have been streaming in that things have got very quiet at many of the urban nests sites, and with the absence of the juveniles, it is nice to see at least that many of the urban adults are still on territory, with reports of many of them still spending time on the nest ledges.
Now independent, and hunting on their own, it would appear that many of the juveniles have either moved on, or have dramatically expanded their hunting areas taking them farther away from the home territories. We remember years past, while very closely monitoring some of the peregrine nest sites, we witnessed the adults on more than one occasion actually chasing their offspring out of the territory as October moved in. It is believed that the adults reach a point that they will simply no longer tolerate the harassment for food from their offspring, (in addition to sharing the territory with the kids), and "encourage" their young to move on. Sooner or later, the urge move on overwhelms them, as in the peregrine release sites that we have been doing over the years, the juveniles simply stop returning to the hack boxes for the food being provided by the hack site attendants.
Monday August 1, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Again was a very hot day, and I only found a couple birds in the area the Nest Building.
Saturday July 30, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: It was a very hot day, and I only found one immature in the tower near an upright in the shade.
Thursday July 28, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Again, I went in the evening, and found out the explanation of the actions of the female late last evening. As I circled the nest building, and coming in from the south. I heard some calling and saw two immatures fall in adults for a food drop. One of the immatures originally grabbed the food, but think it was dropped over the empty lot.
Wednesday July 27, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: As I mentioned previously, every time you go to the nest site it's like rolling the dice. You never know who you're going to find. Today, since I had so much luck over near the Water Tower, I headed over there. The route I used, was behind it the Canadian Tire and through the theater parking lot. As I got past the buildings just south of the Canadian Tire, two immatures (One of the boys and Loki, would screaming over top of me to the South East, followed a couple minutes later by the second boy). The first two, I followed with binoculars, and I don't think they stopped until they were over the Warden Subway Station.Twenty minutes or so later, I noticed one had returned to the Water Tower. But this time, it was getting dark and I headed back to the car. As I was walking along Eglinton Avenue, a bird (the adult female I believe) flew over with some difficulty to the north end of the nest building. She then returned to the Water Tower and circled it and she landed out of sight. She then flew back the Tower in the twilight.
Tuesday July 26, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Arrived around 1930 hours, started walking the Hydro Right Of Way from Victoria Park East to Warden Avenue without seeing any birds. When I got near Warden and Eglinton Avenue, I looked back toward the Bell building and the Tower, and did see one bird of the Tower. Of course from that distance, it was impossible to tell what was an adult or immature. I got a little farther on, and the Falcon glided in from the north, and this bird was definitely an immature. It landed on the side of the City Of Toronto Water Tower. When I went around to the East, much to my surprise there was also a second bird that location, also an immature. It almost looked like the two of them were hiding, and whispering " He 'll never find us here". I watch them until was nearly dark, and on my way back to the car I stopped stopped in to get a can of pop. As looking at the store, a peregrine came from the direction of the Water Tower over Eglinton and low over the vacant property near the nest building. Also, as I headed west and look back at the Water Tower I could see another bird on the South-West side. As far as I know, this bird spent a night on the Tower as I lost sight of it in the dark. At one point even laid down on the ledge for a minute or so.
Monday July 25, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Arrived around 1900 Hrs. and in the hour and half or so spent there until dark, I saw no birds. This is the first time that I've been skunked at the Scarborough Nest Site.
Sunday July 24, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Since I did have such good luck yesterday at 0800 Hrs. I decided to walk over to the area early. I arrived around 0615 Hrs. and had a little bit more luck. The Tercel was about five levels up, and just as I can around the corner and immature flew in to the tower from the direction of the building. For five or 10 minutes this immature was around a third level. It then jump toward the middle of tower on a stair landing, and was so amusing is that on the other side of the landing were about five starlings. Again for 10 minutes or so the two groups eyeballed each other, and a peregrine tilting his head back and forth. Ten or fifteen minutes later the the immature flew off, were circled close to the building and headed off East. I could hear vocalizing and it sounded to be somewhere in the old Knob Hill Farms property. I walked along Ashtontonby and sure enough about 4/5 the the way along the Falcon was perched in a tree . Even though still standing this tree was predominately dead, but it did provide a good perch. From this tree, the falcon was flying around the area high and low and then landing back in that tree. Occasionally, a bird to fly over Ashtontonby and back into the property. What confused me, was that the bird would very large over the road but when it landed in the tree it appeared to be smaller. It was not until about an hour later, when I walked along Eglinton and saw what I thought to be one immature in hot pursuit of a bird that it turned out there were two immatures in the area and they were chasing each other.
As I've mentioned in my observations before, the more I see this site with the exception of a low Nest height, it seems well-suited for raising a family. With the exception of Eglinton and Pharmacy Avenues, with that large property to the East it gives the immatures chance to gain skills without much danger. Also, upon my return and going past the Tower I notice about a third level a Starling laid out as food, probably by one of the adults.
On Sunday evening I decided to check Scarborough Nest Site. Didn't see anything in the vicinity , but out to the Northwest on the Hydro Towers I found the adult female and and judging by the size, one of the immature males. They spent 15 or 20 minutes on the towers, then the immature vocalized and the female flew to the north followed by the immature. That was last saw of them for the night.
Saturday July 23, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Due to unforeseen circumstances, I arrived at about 0800 Hours. When I arrived there were no birds present, so I started circling. I walked west along Eglinton, and then north to the Hydro Right Of Way on Victoria Park. About 200 yds. West of Pharmacy on that path I heard in immature vocalize the " Feed Me" call. It is amazing how far away you can hear call. The other amazing thing, it is how it reverberates and it's hard to tell what direction it comes from. I would swear I got over to the base to the Tower, the sound was coming from the base. But it turned out that the immature was about to three to four levels up. In the hour to hour and half I stayed there, this was about all action there was.
Thursday July 21, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: First of all, I would like to correct the first sentence of my last report. I did not release an adult and immature, but I did see them at Warden and Eglinton. My apologies for not editing the E-mail before I sent it.
Now down to observations, I decided to drop by the site around 1900 hours Thursday, and as I drove south on Pharmacy approaching Ashtonbee I saw one immature flying around the Tower. After I parked and walked across road, I found one of the males a third so way up the Tower. About 10 minutes later, a second immature popped up from roof. I then walked over to the soccer fields, and the third immature also popped up from the roof. The last one was obviously Loki. I also saw one of the adults with food when the tower and then take off with one males following and the food drop was successfully completed. The rest the night until dark and the family fly on and off the Bell building to the Tower (I wish the two guys would cool playing tag inside the Tower).
Wednesday July 20, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: As I reported last night, I had released one adult and one immature are around intersection of Eglinton and Warden Avenue. So tonight I decided, I would walk south on Pharmacy to Comstock, Comstock to Warden, Warden to Ashtonbee and back to the Bell building. Well when I got over to Warden and Eglinton I look toward the Bell building and saw at least two birds on East face. I took a shortcut at the East end of the Knob Hill Farms Property. From this position, I saw three birds flying around the Bell building. Even from that long distance, it looked like one of them was the female and the other ones the two males. However, from that distance, was it the adult or immature female. Much to my surprise, as I got closer it turned out to be all the three immatures. It was more amazing, Loki the female was holding her own with her two brothers. All three flew around the Bell building and the Tower, with Loki giving as good as she was getting. After about 10 minutes of this, all three settled down on top of the Bell building.
While the birds did this, I marveled at what I just saw. I had to saw what every person that has attended a watch hoped to see. All the immatures together at once, flying together. At this point, I not seen any of the adults. As I was walking behind a Bell building all sudden the Tercel stooped out of the Tower to the south, and much to my surprise all three immatures followed. About 10 minutes later, Loki returned and about five minutes later both of the brothers returned. By then it was too dark and did not see the Tercel return.
Monday July 18, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Just quick note, on an observation I made at the Scarborough Nest Site today. As hours driving east on Eglinton Avenue, and stopped at Warden Avenue, I happen to glanced to the southeast that the city of Toronto Water Tower and saw something that I hadn't seen before. It appeared to of Falcons were on the Tower, one on a seam that that circles the Tower, and a second on the top rail. As I was driving, and not in position to make any sort of turn I went down to the McDonald's parking lot and then walked back in circled the Tower. By the time I walked back toward Avenue, I had only one bird visible (the one on the seam), this bird look fairly Brown, and flew off counterclockwise and disappeared behind the Tower. Thirty seconds or so later, another bird appeared on the top rail, and this was definitely the adult. The reason I know this, is it took a stoop and flew right over me on the West side of Warden Avenue. It might 10 or so minute circling of the tower I did not see the second bird again.
Thursday July 14, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Since I hadn't been to the site in about a week, I decided to check out the site. When I arrived, no birds were visible, so I decided to walk around the old Knob Hill Farms site to to see if any of birds are around. I ended up walking east on Eglinton to Warden, North to the Hydro Right Of Way, and West back to Pharmacy Avenue. During that time I scanned the area, and saw what I thought were two immatures, and by their size and flight I would say I had Loki and one of the males. By the time had completed the circle, and got back to the south side of the nest building I saw two Bell employees in the parking lot, and when over to talk to them. Just about as we lost our light, a bird took off, did a power climb to about two-thirds of the tower. I did notice a tail feather out of place, but was too dark to see if the bird was an adult or immature.
From now on, it will be more more difficult for observations of all the birds, both the adults and immatures to be seen. It is more likely, that observers will see what I've seen tonight.
Sunday July 10, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Started the morning off, with about an hour at this site. What I saw basically, was the same thing as I saw Saturday morning. It was a similar pattern, with a little interaction among the three immatures, the two Immature males flying off, only one returning and Loki the female basically staying on top of the roof. About 20 minutes later, after walking east on Eglinton Avenue I did eventually see the three matures and the male on the top of the building.
Saturday July 9, 2005
Bruce Massey reports:
After only seeing two immatures, and the adult female flying off to the South-West and not returning the night before, I decided it would be worth getting to the site around Dawn. Much to my surprise, I had three immatures and the adult male in the area first thing in the morning. There was no sign of Adult female however, and I did take a walk around Eglinton Square Shopping Mall. There was quite a bit of activity, from the two young male immatures, but not all that much activity from Loki the female immature. The two boys were sitting on the top of a ladder on the East side of the Bell building, screaming at each other, and then one flew off to the East, followed by the second one. Only one returned that I could see from the Northwest. I did not see the second one return for the 45 minutes to an hour I was there till I broke off the observation.
Dropped by the site for about half an hour around 1430-1500 Hours. It was pretty hot and humid, therefore it was hard to find the birds in the tower and on top of the Bell building. Still we found two immatures, and one adult (the Tercel).
Dropped by a third time, around 1900 Hours would in the evening. Being cooler, there was activity from the male immatures and the adults. Still not too much activity from Loki, but she was staying up at height and there was a little more interaction with her brothers.
Friday July 8, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: After taking Thursday night off, I was feeling a little guilty and therefore went over around 1900 hours. Saw only the two adults and two immatures (one male and one female). Also met Sam and Mike, a couple of watchers. Loki the female, was flying well, however she did land in a tree for about 30 seconds and then took off to the roof of the Bell building. Just as it was getting dark, the female adult flew off to the southwest toward the Eglinton Square Shopping Mall. We didn't see her return until we broke off the observations at 2130 Hours.
Wednesday July 6, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Upon my arrival for the morning shift, I joined Frank who was already on site, positioned to the east site of the nest building, where he had all three juveniles in view. With the young juvenile males flying so well, our only concern is Loki, the young female, that still has not the same confidence of her two other siblings. Throughout the early morning and afternoon, Loki made only two short flights from the nest building roof to the tower and back, while her other two brothers had some spectular short flights with their parents to the north and south of the nest building. All in all, things are going well, but we are still keeping a close eye on Loki. At approx. 2 pm, Bruce came in to relieve me and take over my position on the watch.
Bruce Massey reports:
I arrived at the Scarborough Nest Site at about to 1330 hours and found Mark and Frank in attendance. They said that all three immatures had made good flights including Loki, (she did not lost any height). When I got there, one immature was on the nest building, and the other two were on the Tower.
After about half an hour, Mark and Frank left and left me all my lonesome. It was quiet for about another half an hour, and then it got interesting. First the adult female, flew high out to the East, and then appeared to stoop around Warden and Eglinton. She then came back to the Upper part of the tower and was joined by the male. The immature that was higher on the Tower, made a controlled stoop to the south over the gas station and back in to the top of the roof of the Bell building. The second immature joined it from the Tower. Due to the actions of the one bird originally on the Bell building, I would think it was Loki, and therefore the two in the tower were the males, Hermes and Galileo. The two male immatures and the adults returned to the Tower and it was quiet for a while. Then the female again went off to the East, but this time she started stooping something low in the abandoned lot. About a week and a half ago, we did seen similar actions and thought that maybe a local Red Tail Hawk getting run off. But, much to my surprise the adult male joined the female, it turned a to be one of the immature males that was being chased. Even though my view was obscured by the trees on the side of the Bell property, the adults forced that immature down to five to ten Ft. off the ground, but it managed to climb back up to the top of the Bell building where it was joined by it's brother. After this, there was about 15 minutes or so of the two brothers and the female adult flying around the Bell building. Around 1545 hours, the last saw the two brothers were their tails heading north. After not seeing them for 15 minutes or so, I proceeded to to walk around the abandoned lot (Knob Hill Farms). Other than the one bird (Loki) I saw no one, adult or immature. I broke off my observations at 1600 hours, and will probably drop back around 1900 hours for second time.
Arrived at site at 1900 hours, found all the three matures at various levels of the roof of the Bell building. One of the immatures had food about a quarter away along the side of the building. This male was joined by a second male when they had a little tug of war while the female sat down at the South End of the Building. The female then joined them and eventually had some of the food. After everyone one finished, they separated momentarily and then one of the males flew up to a ladder. Within five minutes, his brother followed. After discussing who could beat each other in a race, they both proceeded on a long flight to the East. After landing on the Tower, they did a shorter one to the north and over the Bell building. Loki however, seemed to go over to the South-East White corner and preen. Therefore at 2030 hours I left the site
Tuesday July 5, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Minutes away for the Scarborough nest site, my cell phone was ringing with Linda on the other end warning me of yet another challenge. Loki, the juvenile female, had flown down to the telephone wires literally not more than 12 feet above the street level, directly above the exit ramp to the Golden Mile plaza. Moments later, we were hit by several huge downpours of rain. Despite the downpour, Loki hung tight to the wires and managed to stay put, even with the large gusts of wind that had her wings spread open on several different occasions while she tried to balance herself and stay on the wires.
Fearing that she would be blown off and/or attempt to escape this difficult situation, we poised ourselves to catch her up should she come to the roadway. The good news, she managed to hold on! After an hour of clinging to the telephone wires on the west side of Pharmacy Ave., and with several passes of the adults overhead trying to coax her to fly, she finally lifted off and flew east across Pharmacy Ave., landing on the overhead telephone cables on the opposite side of the road way, closer to the nest building. Again another hour passed and again with the adults' encouragement, she took flight again gaining altitude and finally landed on the communication tower to the east of the nest building. After three attempts and a bad landing, she finally landed safely on the tower.
Around 9 pm, she attempted another flight, this time successful in gaining enough altitude to make a hard landing on the east site of the nest building roof top. As darkness fell, and Loki hunkered down for the evening, we called it quits. Again many thanks to Marion, Linda, Bruce, Lenore, and several Bell Canada employees that were on hand during this watch.
Photos of Loki on the lower telephone lines, and Marion, Lenore, and Linda standing in wait on the watch.
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the Photo Gallery.
Monday July 4, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Due to the fact the Galileo was so low on the tree when the watch was closed the night before, I had to be at the site before dawn. Therefore at 0420 hours I was at the site, and all I can say, is it is a good thing that peregrines have a white eyelid, because that is all I could see to tell me that the bird was still on the tree. Things got revved up are around 0445 hours vocally, and Rubin the adult male came in from the South-West with food. I could hear all three young, even Hermes who was so over in the Tower. For about 30 minutes or so, Laurie the adult female got really irate and sounded off, flew up to some trees, and even landed on the wires by the Street. (It was only yesterday, when I saw her stoop a raccoon that I figured what was going on. ).
At around 0620 hours a the female eyasis took off low,flying across Pharmacy Av. and landing on the first apartment building. She stayed there till approximately 1400 hours when I left for the day. Hermes, the several strong flights from the Tower, and even made it out over the plaza, and back to the top of the nest building. Galileo, flew South from the tree, made it back to the building and just above the nest ledge height and clung to the building for 10 seconds and then land on a tree near the gas station. About 20 ministers so later he tried to join his brother on the northeast corner of the nest building, just missed it by about a foot, and landed about 80 ft. up in the tower. This was basically the way the situation stayed up until 1400 hours, with the exception of the "Lads" honing their flying skills.
Mark Nash reports: evening shift
For the first time in as many days, this afternoon shift was quite un-eventful in comparison to the last five days. Loki, the juvenile female, remained on the roof of the nest building doing a lot of running around and screaming to her parents, who finally gave in to her calls for food.
The two juvenile males had many great flights back and forth from the nest building roof top to the tower, and several good flights chasing their parents around for food. Still seeing some very bad landings, but they are both still keeping their altitude.
Frank and Bruce tell me that the local raccoon was stooped by Lawrie (the adult female) in a large tree just in front of the nest ledge on the front lawn within the compound early this morning, but the resident ground hogs are not being stooped anymore. It looks like Lawrie has accepted their presence and no longer deems them a threat. But the raccoon seems to be quite another story!!
As of darkness, all three of the juveniles were on the nest building - upper roof, and quite content to snuggle up with each other for the night.
It is also worth noting that unlike many of the other nest sites over the past 10 years while we have been observing all of these juveniles, none of these guys at the Scarborough nest site have yet to return to the actual nest ledge. Both of the adults have returned at various times since the chicks have fledged (and continue to do so throughout the day - off and on), but the juveniles have not!
Very interesting indeed?????
Frank Butson reports: Arrived 6:30am,quickly found one juvenile on the roof of the nest building,one on the tower,and both parents on the tower.Eventually found the 3rd juvenile also on the tower.Seeing Loki on the roof of the building,I was reasonably sure a rescue and release had taken place,which given the alternative was a good thing.
715am Rueben(adult male) brings food onto the roof ledge of Bell building,and immediately Loki jumps on the meal and mantles.Rueben leaves,Galileo trys to steal meal from Loki(starling I believe) and Hermes flys over from the tower,to join in a 3 way tug of war. Hermes runs the ledge with his prize the winner of the tussle.
715am-1145am Sundry calling,many good flights by both Galileo and Hermes.
1145am Lawrie(adult female) stoops a Raccoon a few times.
Noon Loki makes a reasonably good flight,taking off from the northeast corner,disappearing around the Southwest corner and travelling half the length of the building before turning over it and landing back where she started. a better effort!
Sunday July 3, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Many thanks to Bruce and Frank on the early morning shift, as the day exploded sometime just after 6 am this morning with Hermes and Galileo that kept them both running throughout much of the morning hours. With Hermes now taking advantage of his new flying skills, he had many good flights from the nest building to the large communications tower to the east. Very difficult to see on this tower for sure!! The parents were observed throughout the day teasing both Galileo and Hermes with food packages, encouraging them to fly, and keeping us all running most of the day. By mid morning, both Linda and Marion joined us to help out with the watch. Now armed with a good size watch crew, and combined with the new set of 2-way radios having been purchased the day before, we were able to cover the entire area all around the nest building to keep up with all of the juveniles' flights. Loki, the juvenile female, also had her part in the chaos, as she took flight for her maiden flight very very low over Pharmacy Ave, and was able to find a very hard landing on one of the low rise apartment building roof tops, where she stayed most of the day, screaming throughout most of the day to her parents as they flew overhead with various food packages.
By late afternoon, we were joined by Sam, one of the Ontario hawking club members, who spent the balance of the day with us on the watch - and thank goodness he did!! Just after 6 pm, Marion screamed out on the radio as the juvenile female, "Loki", took her second flight from her roost on the apartment building roof top, flying east across Pharmacy Ave., in an attempt to get back to the nest ledge with terrible results. Unable to gain any altitude, Loki made contact with the west wall of the nest building, clinging to the side of the wall like a bat for several minutes, then dropping down the side of the building several floors in height to end up in the driveway of the nest building property. The run was on to capture her up to prevent her from wandering out onto Pharmacy Ave into the traffic.
The first rescue failed, as she took advantage of the east winds, and flew inches above the ground across the parking lot, where she landed in one of the small trees on the east side of the property. Now what to do??? Only several feet from the ground, and with the family of crows near by, and all of the raccoons, and Mr. Skunk lurking in the bushes, this was not a safe place for a young bird that can't get altitude. Knowing that her next flight would bring her to the ground (and likely in a much worse situation), we attempted the second rescue. This time with much better success.
After a small chase across the pavement, and with the assistance of Sam, Marion, and Linda, I was able to capture her up, and get her into the rescue box. Toooooo bad for Mr. Skunk, Mr. Raccoons, and the Crows!! No free meal for them tonight!!
After a good inspection, Loki was deemed in good health, with obvious signs of injury, she was deemed releasable, and later that evening was returned to the nest building roof top. Once again, many thanks to Michael Quigley at Bell Canada, who was once again on hand to help us get this little fledgling back to the roof top to safety. Loki was placed back to the roof top under the cover of darkness to prevent her from a "panic flight" with our presence on release.
Throughout the day, there were many tender moments, with Lawrie (the adult female) caught on film "spoon feeding" Hermes and Galileo on the communications tower. One of the those tender moments indeed, as you can see by the photoss taken today. Unlike the usual screaming juveniles that constantly pursue and chase the adults around for food (where there is always a risk of injury to the adults in these feeding frenzies), the photos taken show another side of the how gentle and tender this family can be at times.
We would like to thank all of the Bell employees that dropped in throughout the day to spend some time with us on the watch, as their support really does make these 16 hour days in the streets all that much more worth while!! It's very nice to see their interest and have their support.
Also, photos include Hermes - several feet up in the tree on July 1st/2005 - just before his rescue and return to the roof
photos by Mark Nash - CPF
(Webmaster's note:) Photos have been added to the Photo Gallery.
Saturday July 2, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Afternoon shift to close
Just a recap for the day events, since my arrival on site around 10:30 am - with Hermes still on the roof top where he was released the night before. His brother Galileo took his first flight late this afternoon (around 5:30 pm) and had two Ok flights, but as of 9:30 pm this evening, he remains very low, in a pine tree approx. at the second floor level just outside the front of the building. Hermes had several good flights today, each time gaining altitude, finally flying up to the large communication tower to the east of the building. Lots of altitude!! With Linda, Bruce, Frank, Marion and myself, we had the building and surrounding area covered very well to keep up on all the flights and action.
Tomorrow, we will be shorter with help, and we all have our fingers crossed that we can cover the area as well as we did today. Thank goodness for the 2-way radios!!! Both parents - Lawrie and Rueben were very attentive with several food drops and several feedings, as well with being with each fledgling during their flights. Loki, the final sibling, still remains on the nest ledge, yet to take her first flight. Tomorrow will be a busy day I'm sure, with Galileo at a very low level.
Frank Butson reports: Knowing the watch here officially started July 1, I arrived at 6:10am July 2, somewhat concerned as last I'd heard in an email from Mark, one fledgling was unaccounted for. On arrival 2 nestlings were easily seen on the nest ledge, both running around and flapping like mad. Both adults were on the tower.
6:50am My heart somewhat sinking from not seeing the 3rd young falcon yet, I was fearing the worst, when who should pop up but Hermes, on the northeast corner of the nest building roof. My heart soared!
6:50am-10:20am Sundry calling, preening, running and flapping by all 3 young.
10:20am Adult brings food (pigeon) to Hermes, on the roof.He plucks it himself and eats. As the food was being delivered the other adult was flying overhead.
Friday July 1, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Hermes comes down AGAIN!
To recap the day in length, I would be spending much more time writing than watching, so I must be brief. A very busy day indeed, with Hermes causing all of the challenges. By noon, the little male "Hermes" was still missing from the night before, and the other two siblings "Galileo" and "Loki" were still on the nest ledge on my arrival. Bruce Massey spent most of the morning combing the area for Hermes with out any luck finding him. We were joined by Linda Woods in the afternoon, and continued the search without success. Michael Quigley, along with his wife and friends, were also on hand in the early afternoon to help with the search, including a quick spot check to the roof for a quick look see.
Some time around 4 pm in the late afternoon, Linda once again did a spot check of all the roof elevations from the ground, and much to al our surprise, Hermes was located on a low roof top on the east site of the building within the property boundary. After a few moments of racing back and forth along the metal flashing of the lower roof top, Hermes flew low and ended up in one of the small tree's on the east site of the property, definitely in problems. Over the next few hours, he was mobbed by the family of crows to the east, and came lower and lower to the ground as he tried to escape the crow attacks. At around 8 pm, it was quite apparent that Hermes was not going to get untangled from the tree branches, and the crows were not going to let up, so the decision was made to capture him up, and return him to the roof. Tracy Simpson was called from the CPF raptor centre, who travelled from Woodbridge with a net that I requested her to bring down. Within minutes if her arrival, Hermes was in the net, and in the rescue box on site. Michael Quigley was called, arriving in record time, and Hermes was returned to the roof under darkness.Thanks to all, Tracy, Linda, Michael and family, for the quick response.
Thursday June 30, 2005
Mark Nash reports: Hermes down again!!
Day 1 of the watch - Unofficially
Not yet prepared or really organized for the Scarborough watch, you can bet that this is the time when the birds will take the advantage!!! We have identified our "problem child", that's for sure. Over the last years, there is always one of the young peregrines that stands out, and it would appear that this nest site is no different!! Hermes, the small young male is it!! At around five pm this day, I received a telephone call on the emergency hot line (my cell phone) from Michael Quigley, who explains in the heat of the moment, that "guess who" had jumped yet again from the safety of the nest ledge, came down to the street level, and was observed walking along Pharmacy Ave in the middle of the roadway!! (Believing perhaps he was a automobile)!!??
Many thanks to the action of Michael and staff, Hermes was scooped up from the road way (AGAIN!!) and returned to the upper roof. It is worth noting that Hermes is the smallest of the three peregrine chicks, and we're not quite sure if his other siblings are pushing him off of the nest ledge. I would not normally say something like this, but this little guy is still covered with enough white down to suggest that he is NOT ready to leave the nest - given his younger age. He is the youngest and the smallest! While I have always said that they are all very cute (more than only a face that a mother could love, as they say), this little guy is really very cute and quite charming. I can't help believe that he is enjoying all of this attention!
The other two siblings, Loki and Galileo, still remain on the nest ledge, one looking he is ready to go, and the other, still with much white down, still not much interested in flight.
Both parents, identified as "Rueben" - dad - from Wisconsin, USA, and mom "Lawrie" - mom - from Mississauga, St Lawrence Cement nest site, are still on hand, and very attentive.
Bruce Massey reports: Checked the site twice today, once in A.M. and once in the P.M.. The eyasis are rapidly losing their down, there isn't much left on their bodies, just their "pantaloons". Also, it seems that the most-active is the youngest. It took me about 15 minutes of observation in the P.M. to see if all three were still on the nest ledge. They were all huddled together on the West side of the ledge in the heat, and it took that long for them to untangle themselves.
Wednesday June 29, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Spot checked Scarborough Nest Site, and found all three eyasis in the A.M.. It was more difficult however, due checked the fact that as they lose their down, they are very much the color of the building. At first, there was one of the adults attending, but both were present by the time I left.
Monday June 27, 2005
Mark Nash reports: First Fledged or pushed???
The Toronto Fire Department comes to the Rescue!!!
Over the past ten years, I have spent thousands of hours in the streets on falcon watches, and in many different cities and places including Ottawa, Hamilton, Toronto , Etobicoke, Niagara Falls, and Mississauga, and Quebec to mention just a few, and I have never seen such a young peregrine come out of the nest so young!! Identified by his band number, "Hermes", the youngest (and smallest) male was found by the Bell staff, hiding in the shade at ground level under a overhang just below the nest ledge. I was called and dispatched to the Scarborough nest site location around 4 pm in the afternoon to help out with the rescue of a downed peregrine falcon in distress. Upon arrival, the still half-covered in white down young peregrine had already been scooped up and boxed awaiting my arrival. After a detailed inspection, and a period of observation time, it was deemed that Hermes was not injured, and could be returned to the nest ledge.
Now the BIG PROBLEM!! Given his very young age, and him being more than half covered with white fluffy down, putting him on the roof simply would not do, given that, in his current state, he would be a "target" for any hungry raptor (especially the great horned owls living in the neighbourhood). While the two attending peregrine parents can easily defend their young against such a predator, this little guy would be at a big risk on the flat top roof where there is absolutely no cover or protection from other aerial predators, especially those predators that are "wait-on hunters" (like the Great Horned owls, who do most of their hunting in the low light). This particular nest site, unlike that of the downtown nests, where there is a lot of light coming from the surrounding buildings (even in the middle of the night), is very dark in the evening, and this "white fluff ball" of a peregrine chick sticks out like a bright light, even in the darkness.
Without having a rock climber or window-washing swing stage at hand, getting this little white peregrine back to the nest ledge would be impossible in any short notice!! Once again, Marion put on her thinking cap at the CPF head office, and after MANY telephone calls (one of them to the Toronto Wildlife Centre, who supplied us with the answer (one that we have NEVER even thought of, yet alone used in the past)), THE TORONTO FIRE DEPARTMENT CAME TO THE RESCUE!!!
Given that many of the other urban nest sites are hundreds of feet off the ground level, the only access to many of the urban nest ledges has been through the use of rock climbers or window-washing swing stages, and access to the nest ledges has been limited for sure without many detailed and planned logistics well ahead of the access.
Off to the Toronto Fire station #222 on Warden Ave, we found our HEROES!! Michael Quigley and I travelled to one of Metro's finest, the Toronto Fire Station #222 and explained the situation. After some fancy talking (and some odd looks), we found one of the nicest groups of folks you could have ever wanted to meet.
Moments later, two of the largest fire trucks and 9 members of the Toronto Fire Department swung into action, and met us back at the Scarborough nest site building. Moments later, "Hermes" the young falcon, was placed back onto the nest ledge with his two other siblings!!! It happened so fast, I could hardly get some photos of the happenings!!!
They left as quick as they had came, and before you could say "peregrine falcon", all was as if it had never happened!!
Both the adult peregrines - "Lawrie and Rueben" - were taken just as much by surprise as we were with regards to the speed and efficiency of the entire rescue!!! God forbid that I will ever have to deal with a fire in my apartment, but if I do (after what I've just seen and experienced with this situation), I know that I'm in good hands with these guys!!
Our heartfelt thanks to all involved with this rescue, especially those from the Toronto Fire Department, and many thanks to ALL of the Bell staff on hand.
Sunday June 26, 2005
Frank Butson reports: Decided before it got ridiculously hot to check on the nestlings at the Scarborough nest site. I arrived at 9:35am,to find the 3 young nearish the edge of the nest ledge,looking considerably more developed then when I saw them last on June14.There faces are getting the Peregrine patternation and my best description of their bodies is they look snow covered.Lots of brown,showing under their down.Very cute. One adult,I believe the female sat on the roof,above the nest ledge. Action consisted only of some preening by the young,the largest, oldest looking one ran along the ledge. Standing at one end it flapped alot,and its underwings were nicely developing. A Turkey Vulture flew past to the north,going west to east,behind the nest building,at enough distance that the adult atop the nest building paid it no attention.It started getting hot so I left 11am.Im looking forward to helping to keep an eye out when these falcons fledge.
Celestina Gomes reports: I first spotted this pair back in May of this year. I didn't think they would stick around but they did. They were swooping around the area and then landing on the second tier of the BELL building.
Later on, I brought my camera and took some photos. I have them here along with some that I've taken last week.
As your webpage says, at first I thought I saw three offspring. Lately I've only seen the two. The one tends to tuck it's head down somewhat. I'm not very aware of how these birds behave, so I have little idea as to what this means. I've also noticed that only the one adult is seen perched on top the building.
Well, I just thought I'd let you know what I've seen, etc.
Wednesday June 22, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Decided to spot check the Scarborough Nest, around 1930 hours. All was pretty quiet, with the Tercel on the South-West corner, and the three eyas in various locations along the ledge. In the 15 or 20 minutes I observed, I did not see the female.
The only quaint thing I saw, was at one point the Tercel flew down on the ledge, all the eyasis rushed him, looking to him for food. When they saw he didn't have any, then started to nibble him until he flew away.
As I was unable to attend the banding, I don't know exactly how they were, but I guess they are around 30 days old, which will have the fledging in seven to 10 days.
Kin Lau reports: My wife and I observed Lawrie & Reuben at about 8:30-9:15pm on Wed Jun 22/05. Lawrie (F) was at the South West corner and Reuben (M) on the South East corner. As I walked along the sidewalk near the building, I got a very good look at Lawrie, and could hear the young making noises. Both birds disappeared around 9:15pm.
Thursday June 16, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Arrived around 15 15 Hours, and all five Falcons were present. The three eyases, and one adult (the Tercel) were on the ledge and the female was present on South-East corner of the Bell Building. Both adults, were preening, and initially the three eyases were sleeping. Gradually, over the next half an hour or so they woke up and started moving around. During this time, I attempted to see if they had been banded yet. As far as I saw, the banding has not happened. What I did see however, was a new growth of Primary feathers, and even some short Tail feathers. I also observed, some preliminary Wing Flapping (With the effort almost making them fall over), and some very short (2 was inch or so) hops.
The Tercel came in with some food, and almost immediately the female came in and took the food off the Tercel to feed the young. It appeared everyone was fed equally. The Prey appear to be about Starling size. After spending about an hour-and-a-half, one of the adults disappeared (the female), and the Tercel and three eyases seemed to settle down on the ledge.
Wednesday June 15, 2005
Frank Butson reports: Arrived 8:15am to Pharmacy and Eglinton nest site,and easily found it as per Bruce Massey description of the area. The adult female was on a ledge right of the nest ledge,with a vantage point into the nest ledge. One young falcon could be seen,very white and "fluffy". The male adult was on the nest ledge,seeming to feed the visible young one. This was later confirmed,by someone who works in the building,who passed me on the way to a coffee break(I was careful not to enter the property as its private property,despite the temptations.),that one of the adults had taken food into the nest.
8:50am Female drops from perch into the nest ledge.Shortly after that the male left the nesting ledge.
9:25am Male chases several Starlings,disappears behind the building.One chick is near the edge of the nest ledge.
9:50am American Kestrel flys through the area.The female just watches it out of sight.
10:10am Female flys to tower and perches.Male chases Ring-billed Gull across Pharmacy Ave.,then returns to perch on ledge above nest.
10:15am Female snuck into nest while I watched gull being chased,can see her and 2 young on nest ledge.One young falcon is very active,moving quickly along the length of the ledge.
10:25am Both adults chase an American Kestrel from the area,as it flew relatively close to the ledge and building.
10:30am As I packed up,watched while I waited for the bus,could see Male on tower,female on nest and 3 young on nest ledge. Thrilled I left.
Sunday June 12, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: I arrived at about 0530 hours, the eyases were awake, and one of the adults, the tercel I believe was sitting on a corner above the nest ledge. I did not set the scope up, as was just starting to spit rain.
Tuesday June 7, 2005
Bruce Massey reports: Yesterday, on June 6, 2005, while working at the intersection of Eglinton East and Pharmacy Av., I looked up, and to my amazement sighted a peregrine. It came in over top of me, and then to the Bell building and, caught a bird and then flew up over top the building and up to a large transmission tower to the East. After losing sight of the above bird, I walked about 10 ft. to the north, and observed the bird on the middle ledge of three Windows. I thought that in that timeframe, the bird near the Tower couldn't have got to the ledge unobserved.
Therefore, I concluded that I had a pair of birds, and they appear to be territorial. I also observed in the East corner of the ledge, some "wash," that suggested the ledge had been in use for some time. Also, the brick wall to the East had some "wash" on it where the birds were sitting on a sign.
I immediately notified Mark Nash, who happened to be at the Burlington banding, and we arranged to meet to go to the Mississauga Banding. After the banding, Mark and I made our way to the intersection above, however, we did not have any optics but did see one of the adults on the ledge. I suggested we go to my place and get my optics, the binoculars and scope to get a better look. This is what we did, and we lucked out, as we returned with the optics, we observed both adults in the air around the building. I gave my binoculars to Mark, and as I was setting up my scope, I glanced up the ledge, the East side where the wash was seemed a lot whiter. It was at this point, Mark said " There are chicks." We later determined that there were three, and they were around 16 days old.
To say this was a shock, would be an understatement. The fact that I found a new territorial pair and that they had an active nest with young was simply amazing. With that said, I think everyone agrees that Scarborough was due for its own nest.
Scarborough/North York Home Page
Peregrine reports from Scarborough go back to at least 1996. Since 1999 sightings have become regular, though to date no successful nesting attempts have been observed. Since 2001 there has also been regular peregrine activity in North York, but likewise no breeding success as of yet.
Scarborough/North York Nest Site Reports:
Thursday May 22, 2003
Bill Edmunds reports: 3 peregrines were flying around the tall buildings on the south-east corner of 401 and McCowan today. I was without binoculars so couldn't see for certain how many males and how many females were there. They weren't fighting but were flying around singly or in pairs. One landed on the roof edge of 78 Corporate Dr (south side) for a brief time.
Sunday March 09, 2003
Bruce Massey reports: Spent an hour in the Consillium area (Scarborough Town Center) with no luck and early morning. However, when I was setting up to Kortright, and was passing by, I briefly caught a glimpse of what ought to be an adult female peregrine falcon. She was on the southeast face of the Transamerica building.
Monday December 2, 2002
Bruce Massey reports: Spent an hour or so over in the Consilium area around 1600, with no luck. No sightings during a brief spot check on Nov 28 either.
Tuesday November 26, 2002
Bruce Massey reports: Picked up scope and went out to Consillium. Sub-adult Female came in from East, circled over Consilium and headed for South Ledge of 1st Condo. There it preened, and at first I thought it was "casting" a pellet, but I think it was actually calling. I also caught a quick look at it's right leg and I'm 80 percent sure it's NOT banded. She then proceeded to stay on ledge for
Monday November 25, 2002
Bruce Massey reports: Here's the updates from the Consilium Area. I have finally made it over there on Sunday, November 24, 2002 and arrived at 1045 hours. It took about half an hour, but then the female came in from the East in a flat glide that suggested she had come from one of the last two condominiums. She landed on the west side of the fourth condominium and was promptly attacked by a kestrel (male). He made several runs at her, and then flew west and hovered just to the south of the second condominium. The female peregrine, took up the challenge and flew after the kestrel. A kestrel took off to the south with a peregrine in hot pursuit, and given the openness of the area I was treated to quite an aerial battle. The peregrine made three passes at the kestrel, and the kestrel beat a hasty retreat to the East towards Brimley. The peregrine started to head back towards the condominiums, but then did a quick turnaround and pursued the kestrel in the general area of Brimley and Progress. I think she really ruffled the kestrels tail feathers and surprised the heck out of him as they were quite low. In fact, the female had to really climb to clear the Hydro poles. The peregrine then made it back to the fourth condominium, east side and then flew down to the first condominium and spent about 15-20 minutes on the south ledge. After that, she flew east past the last condominium, where she circled a couple of times and then headed northwest in the general direction of McCowan and Finch or the CN rail yards.
Today, Monday November 25, 2002 I arrived in the area, coming from the North at about 1630 hours (Dusk). I was on site for about 45 minutes, and my light was not that good. I finally located the peregrine on the southwest corner of the first condominium. As you know, my 10X25 binoculars are not all that good in fading light. The size of the bird suggested it was male, but at no time did I notice an antenna. And of course, the second I took my eyes off him, he disappeared. However I did find him a minute or two later on the very same south ledge I had observed a female the day before.
Monday November 4, 2002
Bruce Massey reports: I started off at dawn Thursday morning, or about 6:15 a.m., and almost immediately found the male peregrine with antenna on the east face of the TransAmerica Tower (300 Consillium). This is the northernmost building of the three. My feeling, is that it flew in from the Telex Building (100 Consillium) sign. The Transamerica Tower, has many ledges on all the faces, and during the six hours that I was there the bird was on several. This building was also the one the bird spent about 60 percent of the time on during the time I was there. Most of the six hours, it spent most of its time on the East face of the building.
The bird was a male, full adult, with a silver band on its right leg, and a black band on its left leg. The black band appeared solid, but the distance was too great to read any numbers. The antenna, appears to be in the position it was installed, it doesn't look like it has slipped any, and the neoprene harness has not displaced any chest feathers.
I spent approximately six hours that day (Thursday) and as I stated above, the bird spent about 60% of its time at the Transamerica Tower, it also spent a little time on each of the other buildings, and I noticed it twice flying over to the first large condominium to the north by the highway. This condominium, appears to be used as a food stash, as both times the bird brought back food to be consumed on 300 Consilium.
Just on a hunch, I spent about an hour in the Consumer's Road Area (Sheppard-Victoria Park), since this was the closest known and active area. Unfortunately, there was no activity.
The next day, I arrived at Consilium Place around 3:00 p.m. and I found the male peregrine on the east face of the Transamerica tower. As I got into the courtyard, much to my surprise a second bird, definitely a female by her size, was perched at about the same level as the male, but on the south face. After about 5- 10 minutes, she flew over beside the male, who vocalized, and it appeared that both of them were doing some sort of a pair-bonding exercise. After they had settled down, I briefly noticed what appeared to be a raptor flying low to the northwest. I really didn't get good look at it, as it was quartering away from me. About 10 or 15 minutes later, I noticed another raptor coming in from the west behind the tower, and heading over towards the first condominium to the north. The bird hovered, and landed on the northwest corner of the building. The female took off from the Transamerica Tower, directly for the third bird engaged this bird in a rather spirited aerial battle. The third bird, was very similar in size to the female that engaged in it, and indeed there was some vocalization during the battle. I say it was quite spirited, as it went south down to Ellesmere Rd, east to Bellamy and north over the highway, and then both females disappeared and never saw them again that day. During this battle, the male never moved from his ledge. During the battle the two females, I also had one Turkey Vulture circling high overhead.
I also stopped by about 7:00 a.m. Saturday morning and did a quick circle of the area with no luck. I spent about an hour there, but only to observed some American Kestrel activity off to the west.
Saturday November 2, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: It appears that at least one peregrine is still hanging around Consilium Place, east of Scarborough Town Centre. Mark Nash reports that FLAP volunteer Allan Bell has been seeing a peregrine almost daily through much of September and October, and has occasionally seen what he believes to be a second peregrine flying with it. The individual he has seen regularly is wearing a transmitter, indicating that it is likely either Lightning or Lionheart. Jack Higgins and David Shilman have also reported sightings recently at the same location, but were unable to confirm the presence or absence of a transmitter. David also noted kestrels in the area.
Thursday August 17, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: On Tuesday around 10:00 am, Jack Higgins spotted and was able to photograph an adult male peregrine on a roof corner at Consilium Place. The bird was only seen from the front, and it was therefore not possible to tell whether it was wearing a satellite transmitter backpack; the legs were also obscured from view.
Tuesday August 6, 2002
Jack Higgins reports: 9:00am, 300 Consilium Place, 17th floor, clear skies and warm weather.
The peregrine wearing the transmitter (presumably Lightning) has returned. He was feeding on a neatly bisected small bird. He then hung around until about 11:00am.
Friday August 2, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Jack Higgins has reported to us a very interesting sighting from Scarborough. Last Friday, a peregrine wearing a satellite transmitter was on the roof of one of the Consilium Place buildings, and it appears to have been using this area frequently. It is possible that this could be either Lionheart or Lightning from Project Track-'em 2001-2002, though a description of the bands suggests that it could also be a bird from someone else's study. We would greatly appreciate any further sightings of this individual - please email us if you have anything to report.
Tuesday July 23, 2002
Charlie Adey reports: I had a peregrine perched on a TV pole atop an apartment at Kennedy/Sheppard (southeast corner) today at 0930. Had a chance to grab binos for a good look, a kestrel bothered it a couple of times. Had a brief scope view before it flew, north behind the building for me. I believe there have been other occurrences recently , one day crows were causing a ruckus around the apartments and a kestrel joined the buzzing, never did see the target bird as it was on the roof of a building. Also a neighbour reported a peregrine with a dead pigeon in his back yard (near apartment buildings), this was over a month ago.
Saturday June 29, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Thanks to the help of Daniel Brauning with the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation, we have been able to identify the female peregrine who was recently rescued from Scarborough's Centenary Hospital. She is a one-year old peregrine, fledged last year from the Gulf Tower nest in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania - a site which has already produced a few other peregrines that have gone on to nest out of state.
Sunday June 23, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Two months have passed since the last report on this page. For much of that time there was no news to report, but within the past couple of weeks a series of sightings have come to our attention from three different areas. Further reports from all of these locations are welcome by email to help us identify the level of activity in each area.
Centenary Hospital: In the June 16 issue of the Scarborough Mirror, an article details the rescue of an adult female peregrine from a sign at Centenary Hospital on June 13. It was discovered while workers were hanging a banner, and was brought to the Ontario Veterinary College in Guelph for treatment. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources biologist John Pisapio was quoted as saying that the peregrine was believed to have been trapped for up to two weeks. Though malnourished, it quickly recovered strength and has since been released back near the hospital. Interestingly, hospital staff report that a male has been in the area too, and was calling for his mate while she was trapped. The Centenary Hospital sits on the north edge of Morningside Park, a large natural area along Highland Creek which also supports a variety of other raptors including American Kestrels, Red-tailed Hawks, and Cooper's Hawks.
Consilium Place: Since the death of Rouge in the late fall, there has been minimal activity around his former territory, though occasional sightings of a peregrine suggested that his mate may have remained nearby. In May, Larry Gagne again observed a peregrine in the area semi-regularly. It is possible that this is the same bird later found at Centenary Hospital; again, additional observations from both areas may help us determine whether there are one or two pairs present.
North York: For a few weeks now, there have been regular peregrine sightings along Yonge Street between North York City Hall (Yonge & Empress) and the area just north of Finch Avenue. All confirmed sightings to date have been of Lightning, and details of his activities are posted on his page. However, it's likely that if he remains in the area, he will sooner or later attract the attention of a female, so we ask everyone in the area to keep an eye out for a second peregrine and report any such sightings to us.
Thursday April 18, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Another Consilium Place peregrine sighting came in today, this time from Bill Edmunds. With sightings nearly daily over the past week, it appears that for yet another year there is at least one territorial adult here. We are still waiting, however, for a report which indicates that there is a pair here together.
Tuesday April 16, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: This morning at 8:40 am, David Shilman spotted a peregrine on top of the "A" on the State Farm Insurance building (100 Consilium Place). It remained in the area for a couple of hours, flying around the building and eventually returning again to the sign. It appears that there may again be at least one territorial peregrine in the area - hopefully a mate will yet appear.
Monday April 15, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Over the past week, at least one peregrine has been present in Scarborough quite regularly around the Consilium Place complex - whether this is the female which spent last year there with Rouge is unclear at present. Also, from North York there has been another possible sighting of peregrines around Yonge and Sheppard. Both of these sites merit further observation, as nesting is possible at either location.
Tuesday April 2, 2002
Marcel Gahbauer reports: There have recently been several reports of a peregrine in the downtown North York area - Yonge Street between Sheppard and Finch Avenues. There have been sightings in this area sporadically over the past couple of years, and with a number of tall buildings there, it's certainly possible that a pair of peregrines will eventually claim this as their territory.
Today Harry Crawford visited the area to search for the most recently reported bird, being spotted on the northwest corner of the 'Hollywood Plaza' condominium at 18 Hollywood, a couple of blocks north of Sheppard on the east side of Yonge. Perched on the corner of this building, the bird appeared to be a female peregrine.
If anybody else in the area is seeing peregrine activity, please e-mail us, as we would like to identify the bird(s) and territory if possible, especially if there is a potential of this being a new nesting pair.
Thursday December 20, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Very sad news to report - Rouge is dead. He was found earlier this month on the road below the condominium where he and his mate had been seen regularly since August. It appeared that his body was partly eaten, but it was unclear whether he was hit by a vehicle and subsequently scavenged, or attacked by a predator and then run over. Whatever the case may be, his death is tragic, as it looked like he and his mate were settling in and were about to become Toronto's fourth nesting pair of peregrines. For those of us who have followed Rouge's exploits since his days as a chick in Richmond Hill, his death is all the more a painful reminder of how few peregrine falcons survive to raise families of their own.
Thursday November 22, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: We continue to receive reports of peregrines in Scarborough. The latest sighting comes from Anthony Dale, who observed an adult peregrine at Nugget Avenue & Transfer Place (northwest of Markham Road & Sheppard Avenue) around noon today. It was flying fairly low, carrying a substantial prey item in its talons. After being harassed by some crows, it flew off to the southwest. Consilium Place is located only a couple of kilometres to the southwest as the peregrine flies, so it is likely that is where the bird was headed, and that it is one of the peregrines which has been reported in the area of Consilium Place / Scarborough Town Centre over the past few months. It would be very interesting for us to learn more about the area which these peregrines are roaming over - we would love to receive reports from anyone else who observes these birds.
Tuesday November 13, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: I received a report today from Don Peuramaki, who observed a peregrine flying around the top floors of 1110 Finch Avenue West, near Dufferin. It's possible that this is the same peregrine which was been observed recently around Finch and Yonge, roughly 4 kilometres to the east. The peregrine may also have been in the Yonge / Dufferin area for purposes of hunting at the G. Ross Lord Reservoir.
Sunday November 11, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: David Shilman again observed a peregrine at Consilium Place this past week, on November 6. In addition, Larry Gagne has been observing two peregrines at 88 Corporate Drive (just northeast of Consilium Place) since August. The male has been confirmed as Rouge (originally from Richmond Hill's 1999 hack release), while the female is banded but we have not yet tracked down her origins.
Friday August 24, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: The summer has been quiet in Scarborough and North York. Yesterday morning I received a report from David Shilman who observed two peregrines circling low over 100 and 200 Consilium Place around 8:15 am. These may be early migrants passing through, but maybe they will stick around as others have in the past. As always, all reports are welcome by email.
Friday June 8, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: On several occasions over the past month I've spent time in the Consumers Road area trying to locate the peregrines that were being seen there frequently earlier in the spring, but without any success. Either this pair has become much more secretive, or they have moved elsewhere. As always, any reports from the area would be greatly appreciated.
Wednesday April 25, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Two reports from the past couple of days indicate that at least one pair of peregrines, and likely two, remain active in Scarborough / eastern North York.
David Pfeffer visited the IBM building on Consumers Road yesterday for one of CPF's Earth Week appearances. In the process, he noticed a considerable amount of whitewash on the building, as well as bones around the base of the building from previous meals. A number of people who attended the event inside mentioned that they have been seeing two peregrines in the area, most commonly on the IBM, Shoppers Drug Mart, Investors Group, and Sprint buildings. At least one of the birds was present yesterday. Given that two birds have been seen, but only one at a time has been observed recently, it's possible that there is a nest with incubation underway.
Further east, at the "traditional" Scarborough location, the Consilium Place at McCowan & 401, David Shilman had a sighting of one or possibly two peregrines yesterday morning. Just before 8 am, one peregrine circled above 100 Consilium Place, and then dove out of sight behind the building. It started circling higher again, and once high up in the sky again, a second bird nearby was spotted which looked like a second peregrine.
Though the two sites are only ~8 km apart, the likelihood is that the reports from yesterday represent two distinct pairs. Anyone with sightings of these birds, or an idea where they might be nesting at either location, is encouraged to contact us.
Sunday April 8, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: The adult male was again on the northwest facing IBM logo this morning, suggesting that this may be a regular perch - I encourage anyone in the area to look for this bird, and to report sightings to us by email.
Saturday April 7, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: I paid a visit this afternoon to the Consumers Road area of North York, where a series of peregrine sightings were reported during the winter. Those observations were concentrated around the Sprint and TSN buildings, but I saw no birds there, nor any whitewash to suggest they had been around. I scanned a series of other buildings in the area, but without any success.
I pulled over on the side of Yorkland Road at a parking meter to reassess the situation and decide where to search next. As I did so, I spotted an unusual "bump" out of the corner of my eye - and sure enough, there was an adult male peregrine! He was located on the "M" of the IBM logo, on the building just southeast of Yorkland and Consumers, on the northwest facing side. For about half an hour I watched him sit there perfectly quietly, then all of a sudden he launched himself into the wind. He must have spent roughly five minutes alternately letting himself get blown higher into the sky, then in a single elegant motion turning to swoop down toward the ground - twice he came to within 10 metres of the parking lot just to the north of me. Despite the relatively close distance, I couldn't tell whether the bird was banded due to the speed at which he shot past me on each of these occasions. After this burst of exercise, he went right back to the same spot on the IBM logo.
Is this Rouge? Impossible to tell for sure without seeing the band. I'm also at a disadvantage because the last time I saw Rouge he was still in his juvenile plumage. However, this male looked very much like Nate does as an adult, especially in terms of his facial pattern, and since they are brothers, this lends some evidence to the theory that this is Rouge. All the same, we will have to rely on someone to get a good look at the band before coming to any firm conclusions.
Saturday March 24, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: It has been more than two months since we have heard any reports of peregrines in Scarborough. It is of course entirely possible that the birds remain present, but that they simply have been out of sight of observers who are in regular contact with us. If the peregrines are in fact still around, they should be active in courtship and potentially searching for a nest site at this time. Anyone seeing peregrine activity in this part of the city is asked to send us reports by email.
Friday January 19, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: There have been a couple of further sightings in the Sheppard / Victoria Park area over the past two weeks. However, yesterday David Shilman reported a peregrine flying past 200 Consilium Place, near the Scarborough Town Centre (several kilometres to the east). Chances are that this was one of the same birds, in which case it's possible that they are looking at both clusters of buildings as potential nest sites.
Friday January 5, 2001
Marcel Gahbauer reports: The latest news from Scarborough is that there are now two peregrines being seen regularly in the Sheppard / Victoria Park area. They appear to be a male and a female, but to date observers have been unable to spot leg bands (though this could easily be simply because of the way they are perching and their fast motion while in flight). Anyone in the area who sees these birds is encouraged to forward reports to us by email -- with luck this could be Ontario's newest nest site in just a few months.
Wednesday December 20, 2000
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Anyone in Scarborough should keep a lookout for peregrines these days - with Magellan moving around southeast Scarborough since early December, and a number of other recent sightings along Highway 401 between the Don Valley Parkway and McCowan Road, it seems that there are at least two peregrines and possibly more in the area currently.
Saturday December 16, 2000
Marcel Gahbauer reports: I had an unexpected sighting of a peregrine this morning while driving on the highway. On the ramp from Hwy 401 westbound to Hwy 404 northbound, I noticed a peregrine fly across the road ahead of me, diving straight at the local red-tailed hawk, who was perched on one of the lamp posts in the interchange, as is often the case. Of course I could not stop to look, but I did see that the peregrine made at least three attacks on the hawk, making contact at least once, and successfully dislodging it from the perch. By size, the peregrine looked to be a male, but the light was too poor to tell whether it was an adult or juvenile. Given that a banded male was recently spotted in the Scarborough Town Centre area, it is likely that this was the same bird. In addition, a peregrine has been spotted on a couple of occasions recently along Sheppard Avenue East, near the TSN building. Which bird is this? No band numbers have been read yet, but given that Rouge spent last winter in this area and has not been seen in Richmond Hill lately, chances are good that it might be him.
Friday December 1, 2000
Lisa Smith reports: Wellwe've seen some more activity in the last week - haven't seen anything for quite a while - and then boom they're back - the one that's here today looks like it has the black band and it is smaller than the other that was here last week. The one that's here this morning was eating breakfast - not exactly pretty stuff!
Wednesday April 5, 2000
Marcel Gahbauer reports: Rouge may not be as well established in Scarborough as we might like to think. On Monday, Dominique Koumi phoned us to say that Rouge was having lunch in northwest Scarborough, near Gordon Baker and Sparks, just beside Highway 404. Rouge was actually right down on the ground, standing on the steps of the Hummingbird office building, and mantling over his prey as people watched from all around. Despite the attention, he remained there for a long while (well over half an hour, according to one report), and eventually relaxed enough to feed on the pigeon. Thankfully some of the people present were aware that they were privileged to be watching an endangered species at close range, and ensured that nobody else interfered with Rouge. The bird was close enough to the crowd that his leg band could be read, making it easy to confirm that this was in fact Rouge.
It's hard to say what Rouge is up to now. The Scarborough situation seemed very suitable - potential mate included - but perhaps he still has the wandering spirit in him. The Gordon Baker site is (very roughly speaking) halfway between Richmond Hill Town Hall and Scarborough Town Centre, so perhaps he is still alternating between the two locations. Only time will tell. Meanwhile, we encourage everyone to keep their eyes open for Rouge, as it's evident that he could turn up anywhere in the Greater Toronto Area (or perhaps even beyond). For the time being, we will continue to report sightings of Rouge on this page, for the sake of consistency.
Friday March 31, 2000
Marcel Gahbauer reports: The "mystery male" in Scarborough has already been identified! This afternoon David Shilman was able to observe him from inside an office, while the peregrine perched on the window ledge just outside. He was able to easily read off the leg band, and we have confirmed that this bird is Richmond Hill's Rouge! This would explain why Rouge has been seen infrequently at Richmond Hill in recent weeks. Although Rouge is of course still less than one year old, it is possible that he could already breed this year - certainly his behaviour with the female earlier this week suggested that he is interested. We hope that it will prove equally easy to identify his potential mate, although we know better than to expect that.
Monday March 27, 2000
Marcel Gahbauer reports: I was heading for Highway 401 yesterday morning when I spotted a male peregrine flying northwest from the intersection of Bellamy and Ellesmere. I followed it over to the Consilium Place, where I observed it soaring over the three office towers for a couple of minutes before it disappeared from view. When it came back into sight, it was in the company of a female! The two peregrines spent the next 20 minutes or so engaged in courtship flights over the three buildings. The male often wandered off a fair distance, especially to the south and west, but always looped back to meet the female in mid-air.
Although there have been several peregrine sightings in recent months, this is the first time I can recall that a pair was observed together. It is also very significant that this type of behaviour was observed, given the time of year. There is a good chance that this pair will attempt to nest on one of these three buildings, or another nearby site. We will try to monitor this site ourselves, but would appreciate any volunteer assistance from observers living or working nearby - any observations as to the precise times and locations where the peregrines are seen would be very helpful. Also, if possible try to see whether the birds have leg bands on one or both legs - this is very important, especially if the peregrine happens to be close enough that you can read part or all of the band. Please e-mail all sightings.
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