December 2 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — I received a call from Roseanne Bishop this morning with news that she’d seen both our peregrines on the Coats Building at Tunney’s Pasture, so I went for a look myself and there they were!
Both were on the east face. Horizon was on top of the middle of 3 black lights near the top. She was busy preening and facing north. Connor, yes he’s still here(!), was roosting on a column to the right of her and facing south. They both looked quite comfortable there!
I still won’t place any bets as to whether or not he’ll stay around for the winter. I guess a drastic, more permanent change in the weather may make up his mind.
November 8, 10:29 a.m. [from Arlene Williams] — GREAT News everyone! Both Connor and Horizon are perched on the west ledge area, between pillars two and three, of the Crowne Plaza Hotel building. Just as I write, Horizon decides to fly to her favourite roost which is located on the northwest corner of Tower 2 of the Constitution Square Building. Connor is left by himself on the Crowne Plaza ledge area and both look magnificent to this enchanted observer.
I, as well as others, had thought that Connor had headed south, since he had not been seen for over a week. Yesterday, I had heard rumblings that he was still around, but he never exposed himself to my view, so I was somewhat sceptical and now am extremely excited that he had not flown the coop, so to speak. I am so glad that they are both here and that Connor maybe rethinking his journey south. The weather is still in our favour, as it is for him, and we may just get a bit more time to view these wonderful creatures as a pair, before Connor decides to head south. It would be wonderful luck if he decided to stay the winter. This is obviously the longest period of time that Connor has remained here in the fall.
October 25 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Just to say that Connor has passed the latest known date of still being here! I believe the previous late departure date was the 20 October.
Keep those updates coming! And thanks to all of you who are able to be my eyes and ears at this time!
October 20, 12:20 p.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Eve and I can see both Horizon and Connor on the Crowne Plaza today: Connor is near the southeast corner, Horizon on the northeast ledge. After a few minutes, Connor leaves, flying southwest. All seems well with them.
October 13, 9 a.m. [from Philip Maillard] — I see both Connor and Horizon on the Crowne Plaza today. Connor is on the southeast corner and Horizon is on the southwest ledge. It is not often I get to see both at the same time at this time of year. Both look very calm, just keeping an eye on their nest area. A pigeon flies very close to both of them but neither seems interested, luckily for the pigeon! It is very warm for this time of year and I’m guessing that may be one reason Connor is still in Ottawa.
October 8 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Happy Thanksgiving!
Connor is still here. I was down around the hotel this afternoon around 4 p.m. and saw him sitting on the east side of the ledge, near the middle, looking east. Horizon was on the south side where the west ledge meets the solid southface. She, too, was facing east.
October 8, 9 a.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Horizon is perched on the southeast corner of the Crowne Plaza on this cold, windy, morning. She looks quite content sitting there, preening. I look around hoping to see Connor but no luck. I wonder if this cold spell has made him decide to go south. I hope not as I’d like to see him again before he leaves this area for the winter.
September 9, 8:30 a.m. [from Philip Maillard] — I arrived at the Crowne Plaza this morning to hear Horizon chittering quite loudly. She landed very close to the southeast corner of the hotel and was quite vocal for several minutes. Connor responded. She then circled around tower B, at which point I lost sight of her. I did not see Connor, but it was great to hear both of them at the same time! I wonder what has happened to that juvenile that was spotted near the hotel. I’m hoping our pair don’t spot it if it is still in the area.
September 1, 9:20 a.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Horizon is perched on the southeast corner of the Crowne Plaza, facing inward. I watch her for a few minutes, at which point a pigeon flies very close to her. She must not be hungry because she pays no attention to it. I turn away for a moment and she disappears.
12 noon: Horizon is again on the same corner as this morning, facing north. I was hoping to see Connor today, but he is nowhere to be found.
August 31 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Last evening Phil and I went downtown in the evening to check on our dynamic duo. Horizon was perched near the southeast corner with her back toward the east. A few minutes later Connor flew by and went around toward the back of the hotel (north side) and out of sight.
We walked up Albert for a look and couldn’t find him. All of a sudden Horizon flew away and seemed to be heading for the river. We lost sight of her until it was nearly dark, which at this time of year wasn’t a very long wait. She landed on the northeast corner giving her loud chitter, which I usually associate with her greeting or food exchange with Connor. He wasn’t in sight, nor did there seem to be any food. She left and we didn’t see them again.
August 18, 3:30 p.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Horizon is perched on the northeast corner of the Crowne Plaza. I watch her for about 5 minutes, at which time she flys off going east. She then lands on the southwest corner of the Marriott Hotel (something I have not seen her do very much this year). She is eating something, maybe a catch she left there earlier. She then lives up to her species reputation as being the fastest animal on earth. I turn my attention from her briefly and she is gone!
August 6, 7:45 p.m. [from Philip Maillard] — I can see Horizon circling tower C on this very warm evening. She then goes behind the Crowne Plaza and reappears above Minto Place. At that point I lost sight of her. I waited for a few minutes hoping to catch sight of her again but to no avail. No sign of Connor either.
July 21, 2:30 p.m. [from Philip Maillard] — I can see Conner perched on the south east corner of the crown plaza on this very warm day. He is facing inward and appears to be eating. There is no sign of Horizon.
July 5 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — The wonderful decorations at 240 Sparks St were removed this morning by Melanie, Phil, Eve and Alex, along with a couple of maintenance workers at that building. It took about 2 1/2 hours, and we were watched from a distance by Horizon who was sitting at the northwest corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel!
I took the bags of coverings out to Kemptville for storage at the MNR facility until they are needed again next year.
It certainly was nice to see Horizon, knowing she was aware of our movements. The workers with us told of times this year and in the past when she would suddenly be amost right on top of them when they were on the roof there. They are also impressed with her, as we all are!
July 3 [from Brenda Sharpe] — I was treated to a wonderful aeronautic display this morning. One of the falcons (Horison I think) is sitting on the north east corner of Constitution Square, apparently having a snack; Connor was beside her momentarily and then did a graceful swoop right by my window. He has now gone off in search of his own breakfast!
June 28, 8:40 a.m. [from Nathaleigh Rochon] — Connor is perched on the SW corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel. At the moment, he is keeping a lookout toward the north, east and west of the downtown core. He resembles a pillar of strength as he valiantly guards his empty nest.
I saw Connor on two other occasions today. He was once again perched on the SW corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel at 10:30 a.m. and at 2:45 p.m. I’m certain he shares our pain and is trying to deal with the loss of his chicklets. His daily routine has suddenly been brought to a halt and it is hard to cope with such tragedy. Both Horizon and Connor are in our hearts and thoughts.
June 25, 8:45 a.m. [from Nathaleigh Rochon] — Horizon and Connor are perched on the SW and SE corners of the Crowne Plaza Hotel this morning. They resemble sentinels patiently waiting. It breaks my heart to see them looking to the four corners of the wind as if searching for their precious Quest and Bailey. Life has dealt them a deadly hand. I hope that they will remain a pair and continue to raise a family. As much as I enjoy watching them upon their urban cliff, it is such tragedies that make me wish they would mate and raise their young in the wild. Then again if the chicklets were injured we could not intervene. Alas we were not lucky this time but we will not give up. Love spurs us on in our own quest to save the peregrine falcon. Their memories will live on.
June 25 [from Melanie Moore, Canadian Peregrine Foundation] — Eve Ticknor, Coordinator of the Ottawa Field-Naturalists’ Club Peregrine Falcon Watch, and Melanie Moore, Coordinator of the Canadian Peregrine Foundation Ottawa Chapter, regret to announce the tragic deaths of Ottawa’s Peregrine Falcon chicks on Sunday, June 24, 2001 due to unforeseen circumstances.
The deaths occurred simultaneously at 8:30 a.m. when both chicks, Quest and Bailey, slipped off their nest ledge. They both flew briefly and observers witnessed each chick attempting to land on a nearby building. Sadly, they were too young to correct their flight path in time to avoid impacting that building. We would like to assure the public that the deaths were unavoidable and in no way due to the building.
Our sincere condolences and heartfelt thanks go out to the many sponsors, supporters, and volunteers who have been critical in helping with the Ottawa peregrines. Though the deaths of both chicks today have been a terrible loss, the care and help provided by the Ottawa area citizens is still of utmost importance and we encourage everyone to continue to participate in the future toward the many valuable peregrine falcon recovery programs and endeavours.
June 25 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — I have very sad news for you tonight. Both our chicklets have died today! There is no easy way to tell you.
It happened simultaneously and all involved feel it was a fluke the like I never wish to experience again. None of us there today wish to.
It would appear each one, on a separate part of the ledge, probably slipped off during exercising, or 1 did and excited the other. Melanie, Phil, Roseanne and I were on our shift and saw Quest as he slipped down 3 stories of the hotel. He hung on a window ledge, flapping for what seemed an eternity, but which was only a short while. He then let go and flew out, circling around to head east. What a beautiful sight! One which we will keep in our minds forever. There was no hesitation. He then headed towards the west side of Constitution Square, Tower 1, and we believe he was trying to land. Too late he seemed to realize he wasn’t at a ledge. He hit and fell to the sidewalk where we were running to, seconds too late, although I don’t think being there to try to catch him would have made a difference to his life. He died in my arms! Melanie and I took him out to the Wild Bird Care Centre where he would be given a preliminary exam and be kept in a freezer for the MNR.
Upon returning Melanie went to the Centre to make a call and received a message that Bailey had also died! I went running….. A second trip to the Wild Bird Care Centre!
Apparently Bailey had slipped off the north end and had flown around eastward and headed for the north side of Constitution Square, Tower 1. A lady working in that building (and who has followed our falcons for the past 5 years) saw him heading for her window. She said that he appeared to be trying to land and back-peddled his wings at the last minute, too late. She rushed down and picked him up and left a message for Melanie.
I do want to emphasize that the type of exterior for that building was in no was responsible for what happened. The birds knew the building was there. They simply were too young, being only 35 days old.
I thank all of you for your updates and help you have each given in your own way. They are with God and flying free now. That is how we must remember them. I know I will miss them terribly and so will you.
June 25 [from Nathaleigh McKenna Rochon] — It is a comfort to know that Quest and Bailey were surrounded by loving hands when they took their last breath.
The pain I feel at this moment is unbearable. My heart is heavy with such sadness. The love and devotion we feel towards Horizon, Connor and the precious chicklets they raise every year is genuine and heartfelt. They are a special part of our extended family. To hear such tragic news is devastating. I am so angry to know that they never had a chance to truly experience the wonder of being a magnificent falcon flying free as nature intended. I wish that their destiny had led them to explore our earthly world. They were taken from us much too early.
They will never be forgotten as long as each of us draws breath. We will work that much harder to give the peregrine falcon a fighting chance to survive despite the heartbreaking moments such as the deaths of Quest and Bailey.
Quest and Bailey will never be alone. They are warmly greeted as the valiant warriors they are by their brothers Windracer and Zephyr who invite them to fly for eternity. To say their names warms my heart with such sweet memories. Each of them were unique and full of life. They were ready to conquer the world and experience the wonder of life’s mysteries. Their paths were chosen ahead of time and we must live with the tragic outcome. We are lucky to have known them and shared in their brief lives. They have brought us such joy and such sorrow. Horizon and Connor have experienced many tragedies as parents. The confusion they must feel is real and I am certain that they must wonder what’s going on. If they were near when the accidents took place, as a parent, I know all too much the bond you feel towards your child and I believe that if they could have flown to the rescue to save their chicklets, they would have. It this is wishful thinking on my part Marcel, then so be it.
I miss them terribly and wish that I wasn’t so sensitive but then again if I was any different, I would not fight so hard to save animals and ensure that they are protected at all cost.
I offer my silent prayer to our two fallen heroes who bravely met their destiny.
June 23 [from Philip Maillard] — This morning we started our peregrine watch; Melanie Moore, Eve Ticknor, Mark Hickman and I were there very early. A work crew was installing a Canadian flag on Constitution Square at around 7:30 a.m. and Horizon was very upset about this. We could see her flying over the workers on the roof (sometimes getting very close to them) from our vantage point near the corner of Lyon and Albert. She continued this for a while, then seemed to settle down (Connor was active at this time too). While this was going on, both Bailey and Quest were watching from the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel. As far as I know, they hadn’t had any breakfest yet.
Off and on during the morning, Bailey would flap his wings and, at times, run along the ledge. He was much more active than Quest, who seemed to just want to sit and watch. For the longest time, none of us saw Quest, then he decided to put in an appearance, maybe wondering were his dinner was.
At one point during the day, much to our surprise, we saw Horizon fly very close to the road. She had what appeared to be a pigeon and was having some trouble holding on to it. We were all amazed to see her so close! She regained some altitude and flew off around the Justice Building to the north. At that point we lost sight of her. I would guess she was only flying at about 20-25 feet above the ground.
I’m sure Bailey and Quest will be up on the ledge tomorrow strengthing their muscles and keeping us on the ground waiting for their first flight.
June 22 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Phil Maillard and I went down to the Constitution Square building this evening to unload the radios and other equipment for our Watch, starting tomorrow! We arrived around 7:30 p.m. On coming out of the building we spied an adult on the southeast corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel, which was Horizon. Connor was sitting a few columns to the north of her, both looking east.
Meanwhile we went to the west side, by a little restaurant on Albert St just west of Lyon where we set up my scope. There were 2 little brown heads peering over the ledge, although prudently not at the edge (please not yet!). They did a little preening and eventually first 1 and then the other hopped down for the night. The scope attracted others and we spent a nice half hour or so showing 7 or 8 different people a view through the scope, each one being amazed at what the scope showed that their eyes couldn’t! One man commented at how amazing it was to hear a peregrine in the middle of a city, and how lucky he and his wife were at being here to hear it.
June 22, 1:30 p.m. [from Arlene Williams] — Bailey is located on the northwest corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel building and appears to be just checking out the view. He is very inquisitive on trying to go elsewhere, such as an attempt to move from the northwest corner to the northeast corner and he has found out that there is minimum space (approx. 2″) to walk between these corners.
Mom (Horizon) just flew back from somewhere and picked up a snack from between pillars 3 and 4 and then as kind as a mother can be she waddled over to the northwest corner and put it down on the lower level of the ledge area, so that Bailey could enjoy this morsel of protein. He jumped down and then ate that tidbit and then popped back up to survey the situation once again of trying to figure out how to move between corners, without losing his balance. He is smart enough to realize he won’t be able to do it, but I would hazard a guess that he will fly to the northeast corner when he is able to do so. Quest is at the opposite corner – southwest – and has not ventured to the northwest corner. More to come,
2:45 p.m. — Quest and Bailey have relocated to in and around the camera stand area, which is located between pillars 3 and 4 on the lower part of the ledge area. Both seem to be searching for the odd tidbit as an afternoon delight, so to speak. Slim pickings it seems from this vantage point. Both are quite active and are moving about to and fro. They are most inquisitive about everything nowadays.
2:46 p.m. — Both have now taken up occupancy under the camera dome within the confines of the camera stand. Both are flapping their wings aggressively and therefore must move as their wing span is great now, to the point that the two of them cannot perform these flapping movements without interfering with each other’s regular movements.
2:48 p.m. — It appears that Bailey has moved to the upper ledge area and wants some privacy away from his step-sibling. Quest has remained under the camera dome and has plunked himself down for a little snooze. Horizon during the course of these last couple of minutes has hovered near the nest area, but does not rest on any one spot for any longer that a minute or so. Connor is nowhere to be seen and possibly is out looking for their mid-afternoon or supper.
June 19, 12:40 p.m. [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — I thought I’d touch on a subject that’s sure to come up at some point during the fledging period. Many birds, peregrines included, are sun worshipers! No kidding! They like to take sunbaths and are often mistaken for dead birds. You might see one of our chicklets lying on its side with one wing drooping, even draped over the side of a ledge or building roof. That bird won’t move for what seems like an eternity. Eventually it will turn over to do the same on the other side, just like humans who work at getting a tan!
I’ve seen this with other birds, such as robins, who drape themselves across a cedar branch, or, as in the case of orphaned Blue Jays, “hung” over a 2 x 4 in an aviary.
If you see this with our chicklets, watch for a bit to be sure, or call one of us to check, before calling building personnel. If it’s really dead, the wait won’t make any difference and, if it isn’t, you will have saved yourself from embarrassment. Usually if it is injured you can tell by its position.
And, if you do call a building worker and the bird changes position when he comes, don’t be embarrassed. Many of us have been through the same thing!
June 21, 3:51 p.m. [from Arlene Williams] — Horizon has taken possession of the remaining morsels of Connor’s catch and is moving it closer to Quest who has returned to the northwest corner between the north ledge and 1st pillar and is trying to show him how to hide the catch below the upper level of the ledge. She leaves it with him, then popus back up to the upper ledge, then goes back down to further instruct him on positioning. I guess, she finally got tired of demonstrating on what is the required action, as she has literally taken it and is in flight somewhere with the remaining half of the small bird or mouse.
4:51 p.m. — Bailey has returned to the northwest corner of the upper ledge area and mom — Horizon — is situated on the upper ledge area between pillars 4 and 5. Connor is on the southwest corner of the building. It seems now that both chicks can be apart from one another for lengthy periods of time now, in order for them to develop their own character and quirks, etc. I cannot see Quest at the moment.
5:01 p.m. — Bailey has gotten down from the ledge area on the northwest corner and low and behold who head pops up, but Quest’s. So they are both located on the lower part of the ledge area in the northwest corner of the hotel building. I am not quite sure whether or not Bailey got to have a feed this afternoon, but I know definitely, per previous emails to you all, that Quest has his belly full for the evening. Mom has not moved from her previously noted location on the ledge area and is currently cleaning her talons, so maybe there is a further snack to come.
June 19, 12:40 p.m. [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Flight training has now begun for the falcon chicks. Bailey has gotten up on the ledge area between pillars 3 and 4 and Quest is still on the lower area of the ledge.
Their mother, Horizon, is putting on quite the aerial display in front of her trainees and both watching her maoeuvres enthusiastically. Connor is circling the Crowne Plaza Hotel building and is also taking part, however limited. Bailey seemed almost so sure of himself that I thought he was just about to take flight, but I guess and hope that their basic instincts click and both of them do not try to mimic mom or dad.
For about 2 hours this morning, Connor was perched on the southeast corner of the Crowne Plaza Building and Horizon was nowhere to be seen. She returned shortly after lunch and found that her two babies were sleeping on top of one another. I was getting concerned, since I thought I could only see one of them. And needless to say, both were sleeping near and around the camera stand, where they seem to find a great deal of security. Horizon quickly wakened both chicks with the possibility of a lunch time snack, but as it turned out, all she wanted to do was to start instructions on their soon-to-be-acquired flying skills.
I should mention that both chicks have changed in appearance drastically since Friday. They are almost completely covered in their adult plumage and very little down feathers are seen now. We may be surprised about which will be first to take flight, as it appears that Bailey is much more confident than his step-sibling.
Falcon chick, Bailey, was weighed and banded on Friday, June 15, at the Canadian Peregrine Foundation’s (CPF) Watch Centre. Click here for more photos of our falcon chicks! — from the CPF.
June 17, 11:30 a.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Once again, I can see both parents flying in front of the Crowne Plaza. I turn away for a moment and can only see Conner flying now. He is displaying his excellent flying skills — using the winds and slowly climbing higher and higher into the sky. I’ve never seen them fly at such a height! It is always a thrill to see both Conner and Horizon take to the skies.
June 16, 3 p.m. [from Philip Maillard] — Both Horizon and Conner are circling in front of the Crowne Plaza on this warm, sunny day. They are flying in prefect unison; no doubt enjoying each other’s company and keeping an eye on Baily and Quest at the same time.
Banding and Naming of the Ottawa Peregrine Falcon Chicks: Friday, June 15th
Location: Canadian Peregrine Foundation Ottawa Falcon Watch Centre at Constitution Square on the main level in the east tower of the building at 350 Albert St.
Plans are in place to collect the two peregrine falcon chicks for banding. The chicks will be retrieved from the nest ledge by a representative from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and brought to the CPF Ottawa Falcon Watch Centre where they will be aged, sexed, weighed, banded, and named. The naming will be done by Ms. Arlene Williams and a representative from the TD Friends of the Environment Foundation. They will then be returned to the nest ledge.
Banding is a routine wildlife management practice that provides important information about population growth, migration, age structure, and productivity. Peregrines are banded by wildlife services throughout North America in an effort to monitor the species, and it is an important way to gain information about these birds and to help with peregrine recovery.
The public and media are encouraged to attend this exciting event. There will be an opportunity to take photos of the foster chick (successfully introduced to the nest on June 4) and the only nest-hatched chick together at the Falcon Watch Centre. Media will be given first priority.
June 11, 2:40 p.m. [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — The chicks are quite large now and have quite the adult plumage surfacing. They are much more active, as should be, than last week. They still very, very cute, and are so inquisitive about the nest area and surrounding area. They seem to be gaining strength in their legs on every little venture away from the nest area, even if it is only for a few seconds/minutes and within the confines/pillars of the ledge area.
Horizon, good mother that she is, keeps a very watchful eye on her two chicks to make sure that they do not venture off too far or too close to the ledge, which they are attempting to climb, but have yet to succeed. They anxiously await a feeding, whenever that may occur and it appears to be much more often now, so Connor is on guard to search out, fetch, kill and bring home the goodies.
Both parents venture off more often and put on quite the aerial displays and, as usual, are a magnificent sight to behold and certainly within watchful eye of the nest area, at least for Horizon. She oftens goes off to be alone and view the surroundings on her favourite roost — the northwest corner of the Constitution Square Building, Tower 1.
June 9 [from Philip Maillard] — I arrived at the Crowne Plaza this morning around 11:30 a.m., and saw Horizon perched between the first and second pillars. I watched her for about 10 minutes, at which point she took off (what a sight to behold!) and flew over Consititution Square heading southeast. She was gone for some minutes, leaving her two young clicks unattended. Conner didn’t take over watching the chicks. About 10 minutes later, I saw Conner fly over the Crown calling out, no doubt wondering where mom was.
At 1:30 p.m., I was relieved to see Horizon back on the nest ledge (between the ledge and first pillar this time) watching over her family. No sign of Conner at this point.
June 5 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Horizon and Connor are busy feeding their 2 chicklets and taking great care of them. Of their 3 eggs, only 1 hatched, on the 20th of May. Yesterday, June 4th, members of the Canadian Peregrine Foundation with the supervision of the Ministry of Natural Resources, placed a foster chicklet in the nest. The second youngster was purchased from a breeder by the Friends of the Environment. This second chicklet, an anatum subspecies, has been sucessfully adopted into our family and is being well cared for, along with its “homegrown” sibling.
We are expecting to have these 2 banded on the 15th of June. We are planning to start our Watch on the 23rd of June and hopefully this year neither one will attempt to leave the nest ledge before we are readyl!
Anyone wanting to join our volunteer crew is welcome to do so. Please phone me at 737-7551, or e-mail me at email@example.com
May 21, 5:50 p.m. [from Arlene Williams] — Eve Ticknor and I have confirmed that there is still only one baby and two yet to hatch. Horizon is a great mom and Connor is diligently watching over her activities with the baby and the two eggs. More to come.
May 20 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — The first falcon chicklet hatched today, with 2 more eggs to go! Details to follow…
May 3, 9:56 a.m. [from Arlene Williams] — I spoke too soon yesterday with regard to those two (2) brazen pigeons. They have returned and are now located on the northwest corner, teasing and taunting either Horizon or Connor whom is covering the nest. The pigeons are moving and dancing right in front of the nest and I cannot believe how they continue to get away with their antics, since there is always one peregrine on the loose.
One peregine has just flown by my office and I could not distinguish which one it was but it is headed northeast towards Bank Street.
May 2, 10:43 a.m. [from Arlene Williams] — Connor is taking a break from the routine and is perched on the northeast corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel. He is facing inward but with quite the view to the west, including the Ottawa River and the Gatineau Hills.
Horizon is steadfastly taking care of her eggs and is facing inward to the Crowne Plaza Hotel on the northwest corner of the building.
Pigeons are flying to and fro, but Connor seems uninterested at the moment and I am assuming that those two brazen pigeons which were previously nesting on the northeast corner of the Hotel building may have been a meal or snack, of late, since I have not seen either of them for days now.
April 30, 2:04 p.m. [from Arlene Williams] — Horizon just swooped in to be sure that Connor is still performing his nesting duties. Needless to say that he was still covering the nest, so she very quickly flew off to the northwest corner of the Constitution Square Building, Tower 1, where she perched momentarily. She has since flown off in the direction of northwest. As for Connor I viewed him from my vantage point and he looked some perplexed that she had not taken over the nest and was moving his head in all directions hoping, I assume, that she would soon return. Guess not, she is well out of sight now.
April 24 [from Melanie Moore, Ottawa Chapter Coordinator, Canadian Peregrine Foundation] — We have confirmed that Horizon is incubating three eggs in the Ottawa nest site on the west side of the Crowne Plaza with a possibility of a fourth.
April 20, 11:21 a.m. [from Arlene Williams] — It appeared to be Connor hopping from the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza ledge to between the 1st and second pillar of the ledge, to sit on the eggs. Horizon, had just left the nest and the last I had seen her was when she was heading east towards Bank Street.
4:12 p.m.— Confirmed BROODING, as I was somewhat mystified this morning when I could not see her there whatsoever. Just saw the body of Horizon lying on top of her eggs and I am sure that within days, I will be able to provide a count on the number of eggs. I am so excited that she has chosen the northwest ledge to have her babies. I can hardly wait for all of the ensuing activity. My weekend has been made and I hope that everyone else is as excited as I am.
April 19 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — I went up on the roof of Tower 1, Constitution Square this afternoon and was able to see Horizon in her brooding pose. Arlene called it! The nest is between the first and second post at the northwest ledge. My guess is that she has been brooding for about a week.
At this time, all who can, please keep your eyes open as to the “changing of the guard”, or other behaviour in connection with our nest!!
Does anyone have any connections with office workers in the Delta Tower?
April 19 [from Marcel Gahbauer, Canadian Peregrine Foundation] — It has now been a full week since I received any reports of Horizon and Connor being seen simultaneously. This in itself is an indication that incubation may have started. Considering too that most of the other peregrine pairs in Ontario laid eggs this year at the same time or slightly earlier than last spring, it certainly is time for our Ottawa birds to do likewise (last year incubation began in mid-April). Of course we need some more concrete evidence than this to confirm that nesting has actually begun, but the behavioural indications certainly look promising.
Now the big question is, where are they hiding? Arlene’s report from last Thursday of pigeons inhabiting the traditional peregrine nest site certainly isn’t encouraging. Have they perhaps moved back to the southeast end of the ledge, as in ’98? (I hope I’m getting my history right!) Or, have they switched to the west side of the Crowne Plaza as Arlene speculated earlier in the month? I certainly hope that they are on one side or the other — I don’t want to contemplate at this point the possibility that they have moved to another building entirely.
I know that with all of the pairs of eyes on the scene, we should be able to figure this mystery out fairly soon. The Canadian Peregrine Foundation will be having a display at the Great Animal Adventure in Nepean this weekend. This is a great opportunity to make people aware of the local peregrines, and it would be nice to be able to confirm the nesting for them.
[Note: OFNC Falcon Watch coordinator Eve Ticknor will also be at the Great Animal Adventure, along with some of the watch volunteers.]
April 12, 10:10 a.m. [from Arlene Williams] — On such a dull and dreary day, it appears that Connor is finding difficulty in deciding whether to perch on the northwest corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel or the northwest corner of the Constitution Building.
I think it is Connor, as the majority of his belly area is a flecked/striped grey and white colour and above the belly area and just below the beak, it is somewhat white in colour. I am assuming that it Connor for the reason that he is much smaller in stature than Horizon. So if I am right, then Connor is perched currently on the northwest corner of the Crowne Plaza and Horizon has yet to be seen this morning.
Also, my co-worker Bob Boisvert brought to my attention yesterday that there are two (2) rather brazen pigeons nesting on the northeast corner of the Crowne Plaza Hotel ledge. Seems to me that they had better move within the next week or so, or they will become a morning feast or a mid-afternoon appetizer. Right now the pigeons seem oblivious to the peregrines and their nesting territory, so I am hopeful that they will relocate, shortly.
April 2 [from OFNC bird status line] — A Peregrine Falcon was flying over the Bridlewood area of Kanata on Monday April 2.
March 25 [from OFNC bird status line] — On Sunday March 25, a Peregrine Falcon was seen hunting pigeons over the Deschenes Rapids. March 19 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — For those who don’t yet know, Connor has returned and he and Horizon are again seen near the Crowne Plaza Hotel daily. So we prepare for another peregrine season later this spring!
I am looking for a few volunteers to help me around the middle of April with a table at the 6th Annual Great Animal Adventure . It will take place on the 21st and 22nd at the Curling club at the Nepean Sportsplex from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. I don’t need anyone for the whole time, but to help a bit to give me a break from time to time. Besides there’ll be a lot of interesting booths, such as the Canadian Peregrine Foundation (who’ll be flying a falcon), probably our friendly Barn Owl, Casper, information about pets, and animals from the Papanack Zoo!
I do need help especially on Sunday afternoon as I have to be at an important meeting from 1 to 4 elsewhere!
All it will involve is sitting at a table with my usual piles of handouts and talking to people who come by to explain about being a volunteer. I hope to hear from some of you, and in general to see most of you later when the “egg” call goes out!!
March 5 [from Eve Ticknor, Falcon Watch Committee chair] — Connor is here!! His presence has been felt for a few days, but it was confirmed this week. This is the earliest ever for his return! Both Connor and Horizon can be seen downtown at various times, sometimes on the Crowne Plaza Hotel and sometimes on the Coates building in Tunney’s Pasture, and sometimes who-knows-where…
February 26 [from OFNC bird status line] — The Peregrine Falcons downtown are being seen on a regular basis now with 2 birds interacting together seen on a number of occasions on the Coates Building.
February 10 [from OFNC bird status line] — A Peregrine Falcon (Tundrus Race) has been seen on the Coate’s Building.
February 7 [from OFNC bird status line] — A Peregrine Falcon was also seen in the area of the Royal Ottawa Hospital on Monday of this last week.
January 21 [from OFNC bird status line] — A Peregrine Falcon was seen today on Sparks St.
January 6 [from OFNC bird status line] — A Peregrine Falcon did a fly past of Tunney’s Pasture today.