I love it when I see others learn about Chicago’s beautiful peregrine population. Without exception, the people I’ve come in contact with seem as enriched by these birds as I have been – and as eager to monitor their activities. Lucky us!
Monitor Husband Sean has been keeping a close eye on the River Birds for us. He works right across the river from this years nesting site, so he peeks in on them every time he goes outside. He’s seen plenty of activity on the London Guarantee building as the River Birds brood their four eggs and been meticulous in reporting those sightings to me. It’s been wonderful for Mary and I to get updates from Sean and I’m psyched that he’s taken such an interest in his wife’s work and this wonderful project.
Monitor Derek has pretty much taken the University of Chicago birds, Magnolia and Eddie, under his wing this year – or, have they taken him under their wings? We may never know. Anyway. Not only has he kept an ongoing photographic journal of their activities, but he’s provided a number of crystal clear images of their leg bands and you KNOW that makes me happy! Sadly, Magnolia and Eddie have continued to snub the copious nest boxes provided for them on a number of buildings on campus. Instead, they seem determined to nest in rain gutters, which of course means any eggs are lost. An interesting message came in from Derek yesterday. He managed to get pictures of their latest rain gutter “nest” when Magnolia took a quick leg stretch/Flicker break. It seems that although Magnolia has been steadfastly brooding in the gutter, there aren’t actually any eggs under her. Hmmm. I’m sort of waiting for Mary to weigh in on that one.
Monitor Brian has found and photographed yet another new peregrine, complete with leg bands (look down past the beautiful warbler picture into the comments section for this picture)! He sent us photos of a young male just molting into adult plumage that he spotted very near the Calumet Bridge nesting site. Even though the day was gray and dark, Brian managed to get a number of leg band pictures to send to me. Mary and I identified the male as “Malty,” a male born in 2008 at the Froedtert Malt building in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Some of you might recognize Froedtert as the birthplace of a number of other illustrious Chicago peregrines: Pilsen’s Bryanne, Lawndale’s Nitz, Perry (the bird downed last year at UIC) and Wacker’s Dory and Joe. Mary and I are interested to find out if there’s been a pair change at the Calumet Bridge or whether Malty was just passing through. Keep you posted!
Anyway, way to go, gentlemen!