2008 Local Activity Reports

September 28 [from Eve Ticknor] — Phil and I saw both our Peregrines this afternoon around 1:30. Diana had been on the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza when I first arrived but soon changed to one of the sensors in the middle of Tower C. Connor, who wasn’t seen for quite a while suddenly appeared on the west side of the hotel, between the southwest corner and the first column.

September 11 [from Eve Ticknor] — Yesterday afternoon I was downtown and had a look around for our falcons. I glimpsed a Peregrine disappearing behind Tower A from the east ledge, but didn’t get enough of a look to determine who it was. Diana was perched on the Carlisle Building antenna, at rest. Having been away all summer, it was nice to see at least one of ours. I did see a couple of Peregrines this summer, though. One was outside of Seoul, South Korea, where I was visiting in July. The other was along Lake Champlain. It scattered a mixed flock of gulls and terns on the sandspit at Noblewood.

August 10 [from Phil] — Yesterday, at about noon, I saw a juvenile (I’m guessing Daisy) chasing after Diana between the Crowne Plaza and Tower C. She/he landed on the weather senser and Diana on the senser facing east. It didn’t stay long as it took off again and landed 8 stories down on a window ledge of the Crowne. It then settled on the Constitution Square one level down from the top of the building. There was also a falcon on the West side of the Crowne.

July 23 [from Mary Hurley] — 0640, one falcon on QE antenna; a second flies from northeasterly direction and lands on one of the smaller arms higher up. O650, corner Albert and Lyon – one falcon overhead, lands briefly on northwest corner of Constitution Square, Tower 1 before flying to southwest corner of Crowne roof. No fourth bird on either ledge that I could see.

July 22 [from Cathi] — I was pleased this morning to see both babies on the ledge of the Crown Plaza, but this afternoon around 2 I had a really special treat. From the 20th floor of Tower C (west, facing the river) I saw one falcon zoom by, then a minute or so later it came back with something dead in its talons. I saw it swoop down, come back up with one of the babies flying up beneath it. The adult went higher, dropped the food and baby went diving down to catch it – which it did! An impressive display for sure.

July 22 [from Marian] — This morning at 7:45 I also saw Daisy and Gatsby on the southwest corner of the Crown Plaza sitting very close together. One flop down, tail out. Most likly Daisy. The other one was sitting up facing out. One adult was on the Carlisle antenna.

July 22 [from Mary Hurley] — Last evening 7ish was driving along Lyon near Queen, falcon overhead flying south and landed midway on west ledge. By the time I got the car parked on Albert and the glasses up, didn’t see that bird on ledge, but did see a telltale tail and wing tips poking out from the tip of the southwest corner – a typical Daisy flop – and a little Gatsby head poking out from beside her. It soon disappeared from view, and shortly thereafter an adult (Connor, I think) flew around south face, I didn’t see from where, and landed on northwest corner. So I don’t know whether first bird landing on ledge was Connor, who then disappeared into well or Gatsby, who did the same before making his way to join his sister. In any event, great to see them both on the ledge.

0645 this morning, two birds on Carlisle antenna and one (juvenile, I think) on southwest corner of Crowne.

July 21 [from Marian] — 7:45 this morning one falcon was on the northwest corner of the Crowne Plaza and another on the Carlisle antenna. Then one flew onto the southwest corner of the Crowne. I did not see it leave; it may have dropped inside the ledge or flown off. At this point if became difficult to keep track who was where; no one stayed long in one spot. Then there was one in the air (maybe Daisy). She flew over the Crowne and Albert Street; then made two false attempts at the Constitution Square windows. I think she saw reflections of buildings in the windows which she wanted to land on. The first attempt was on the north side, and then she flew around and tried the west side. Both times she recovered well. Then she flew southwest and I spotted her again on an apartment building on Laurier (NE corner — across from QE). The falcon on the Carlisle antenna was now gone. I checked the apartment building again, this falcon was gone also. Then a falcon was in the air again landing on the Carlisle antenna. When I left the area, there was one on the Carlisle antenna (maybe Daisy) and another on the northwest corner of the Crowne (maybe Gatsby or visa-versa).

July 21 [from Mary Hurley] — This morning, 0545, falcon calls audible despite the crow chorus over downtown Ottawa. At 0645, one falcon on Carlisle antenna, no others spotted at usual locations.

July 20 [from Melanie Moore] — We are pleased to announce the end of this year’s Falcon Watch. Both Gatsby and Daisy, our two fledglings Falcon, are flying well. All scheduled shifts are cancelled. You are welcome and entreated to continue enjoying the wonderful aerial displays that will occur while our two young falcons learn hunting and flying skills from their parents. Thank you all for your dedication.

July 17 [from Eve Ticknor] — Although I am in Seoul, South Korea, my spirit is with you, and Daisy. She will soon be up higher. My thanks to all of you who are keeping an eye on her, and who are helping Melanie and Bernie with the Falcon Watch.

July 16: Day 8 [from Melanie Moore] — The Watch is still ON as Daisy our female chick keeps working on mastering flight like her brother, Gatsby. Daisy is now on a balcony on the Delta and is okay at flying but has not quite mastered her flying skills.

We will be continuing for a few more days to make sure she is okay.

Some of you have headed down and helped without being scheduled and I thank you for doing that but if you do have a chance, please let me know so I can post when you are available.

Even if you are not sure of your schedule and manage to get down there for even part of a shift it is still very helpful to those who have been putting in a lot of time on the Watch this year.

Keeping an eye on Daisy is important and will hopefully make this year’s Watch a double success with BOTH our chicks safe and skillfully soaring in the skies!!

July 15: Day 7 [from Eve Ticknor] — It is amazing what can be accomplished in a week, when one is prepared to sit, and sit, and sit. All comes to those who wait, etc. Yes, we now have 2 high fliers!

But first, back to this morning. When I arrived, Gatsby was up on his lofty perch and Daisy was still in her corner. She called and called whenever she saw a parent fly by, but no success for her. They were more interested in their son. Around 9 am, Diana took breakfast up to the antenna and fed Gatsby. He took to moving around on the antenna and sometimes seemed to disappear while actually being behind some bar or post. During this time, Connor was on the Carlisle antenna. Our little guy got excited and flew straight for his father. Once there, he returned to “his” antenna, followed by Connor. Gatsby then flew back and forth a few times, before heading to the Queen Elizabeth Towers. He made a perfect landing on a pipe parallel to the main mast. Soon he was again back on his antenna. He appears to really like that one.

Suddenly Diana was flying around and around the roof of Tower C, screaming and diving. Several men were working on the roof. Scott managed to find out what company it was and I passed this information on to Paula, our MNR Biologist. She was going to phone them to see if they could please wait until next week. I hope she was successful.

Gatsby had another meal up there later on, again being fed. He is such a good flier and we were privileged to watch as he and both of his parents flew above us this evening! He handles himself so well and is keen to copy his father in flight style. He even slightly folded his wings to gain speed, but stopped such an activity before he got carried away. Have you ever seen a bird “hang” in the air? Well, ours know how to do that, and make it look so easy.

Just before 5 pm, Christine shouted that Daisy was airborn and everyone started to run around. It was determined that she flew between Towers 1 and 2, heading south. The search was on! Volunteers who were due to get off shift stayed and others showed up. They split up in groups or pairs and off everyone went. Waiting at the base wasn’t easy as I wanted to know what was going on. Of course, when Chris showed up, we had a feeling he would find her, and he came across for us. There she was, up on top of the Crowne! She looked around, and walked around, until she met up with a tiny tree growing way up there. I saw her take a nibble but she didn’t like it. Not meaty enough, I suppose.

Well, if you can fly once, why not again? So she did, heading south, swinging around, and going back along the Lyon St side. Searchers started out again, but this time she was spotted much sooner. She was on top of the Crowne, on the elevator housing. And there we left her. I was so relieved to watch both our chicklets flying high, where they belong. Although it means she won’t get banded, her success is so much more important for us who get to watch her.

I will be out of the country for the rest of the Falcon Watch, but will be checking in as much as possible. I think that if Daisy does well, staying up high and making good landings, we can stop the Watch earlier than we had thought.

July 14: Day 6 [from Eve Ticknor] — The Great Gatsby flies again!

Arriving before 6 am, we could see Gatsby still on his ledge at the Standard LIfe Building. Soon he was off and what a flier. He started towards the C D Howe Building but soon turned toward the Marriott and landed just above the top windows. It looks as if the flags did their trick.

Next he was flying out and up and onto the round restaurant of the Marriott. Once there, he made his way around the edge until he was facing his own home. I went over to take a few photos of him up there. Just as I was focusing, he left again, this time to fly north toward Sparks St, swung around and landed on Tower B.

All along he has shown us that he is a strong flier and can make good landings, as well as a couple of recoveries, all skills he will need for the future. Whoops, he is off again. Now it is the top of Tower C, the highest building in our area. Having landed on the east side, he proceeded to walk around until he reached the southwest corner. There he stopped and rested, even taking a nap, or so we thought.

There he goes! Right up to the top of the Radio Tower on Tower C! That is a super climb for a beginner. And at 40 days old. I am thinking that Diana is passing on some super genes – first Odyssey, next Skylar, and lately Gatsby. We’ll see what Daisy does when she decides to go for her first flight.

Anyway, Diana flew up right behind Gatsby, bringing a large meal which she fed to him way up high. Later on she tried to convince him to fly with her but he was too busy looking around.

Daisy seems to have decided that today is not the day to leave her ledge. I wonder if the parents also decided the same as they kept feeding her all day. She had 4 meals delivered to her. Shades of Solitaire. Daisy did do some wing flapping and went to the northeast corner for a while. However she likes the southeast one better, where she hatched.

Her day consisted of eating, resting, looking around, and the same all over again. Her flapping is good, just not long enough. She will need to do more since she will have a heavy body to keep up in the air. Her parents did a bit of demonstration flying to entice her to go, but I don’t think they really meant it and soon stopped.

Connor and Diana certainly are good parents. They pay attention to both chicklets, often splitting the care between both so you can see one sitting on the ledge with Daisy while the other is on a nearby corner watching Gatsby. Diana seemed to be the one with Gatsby today, attending to him up on the antenna, bringing 2 meals to feed him, bite by bite, instead of letting him pick at it himself. Connor brought food to Daisy, but let her grab it to feed herself.

One view on the monitor showed Connor resting on the corner and Daisy further up, but with a huge bulge under her beak! What a profile! Gatsby started to explore parts of the antenna, but hugged the central part during a few rainy moments.

All in all, we had a quiet day. Maybe there will be more to do tomorrow.

July 13: Day 5 [from Eve Ticknor] — The usual dawn chorus on our arrival this morning. Breakfast was delivered at 7 and again at 7:30! Of course it was rather quiet after that. Long naps, right? Not!

Connor flew in to inspect and brought up some remains onto the ledge. He started to feed Gatsby until Daisy ran up to join in. There was much commotion, wings everywhere, until Connor left the ledge. Gatsby left at the same time and flew between Constitution Square Towers 1 and 2! Gilles headed around to Salter by way of Lyon and Roseanne went there via Kent St. Christine and Patrick arrived and were sent off to search. Finally he was spotted on top of the Journal Tower North. From there he flew again and Marion Spotted him on top of Tower B. Way to go, little one! Diana joined him briefly and left. He then flew again, back toward the Journal, but a search didn’t find him.

I went up the new Tower 3 of Constitution Square with security to look from above. After entering an office on the 19th floor, I found him on a window ledge on the Standard Life Building on Kent at Slater. He was at 14th floor level. He was a very tired little bird and after looking around and walking from one end to the other of this short ledge, he flopped down for a nap.

Meanwhile Daisy was at home with both parents like bookends. She did get fed at 2 pm and again at 7:50 pm. She napped as well, and spent a lot of time sitting like a sphinx! Only come evening did she start periods of serious wingflapping, so she had to be carefully watched, too. More volunteers came and went during the day, including Mary, Scott, the Marshall family, Chris, Claudette. Many thanks to all today!

Around 1:30 pm, a crow found Gatsby and landed on his ledge next to him, a decision quickly changed by Diana who immediately chased it away. He later had a difficult time bumping against the window again and again as he didn’t understand why he could see beyond the window but couldn’t get there. He gave up and had another nap. Come evening, he would do some flapping and then run into a corner for a while, and repeat this over again. His mother made several fly bys, including when she chased a pigeon in front of him, but he still stayed where he was.

And so, he spent the night there and we’ll see if he is still there in the morning.

July 12: Day 4 [from Eve Ticknor] — I must say, Gatsby is a model house guest! Not a peep from him all night. This morning, he went home. While Chris put him out again, Roseanne and I stood ready in case he popped off, which he didn’t.

Poor Diana was very upset. She went again and again to the corner where the dreaded door opened on her ledge, screaming all the way. Connor followed her but didn’t take part.

Meanwhile Gatsby made his way back to the southeast corner, and his sister. They seemed to be happy to be together and spent time either sitting side by side or flopped down on their tummies, sleeping. Gatsby got in several long naps.

Breakfast was served at 9:25 am, with no food again until 6:50 pm! There was lots of calling each time an adult was seen. We had thought our little guy would be rewarded with food on his triumphant return home, but it seemed not to be. His sister grabbed the first meal and he was hard put to get any away from her, but persistence paid off eventually.

Connor reverted to his true self, playing the thief with his children’s leftovers, sneaking in the back way to grab his prize before they can do anything but screech. He has an interesting way to deal with a begging chicklet. He looks around,picks up a leg or wing bone and shoves it in the open mouth. Today he tried it with Gatsby, who spat it back at him. Oh well.

Once, he flew inside the ledge and was physically and vocally attacked by both – he fled immediately!

There were a few sessions of wing flapping. Daisy is a laid back chick. She seems to do little in the way of running and flapping. But I have seen this before and she could still do well.

By the end of today, both were still together near the southeast corner, still faintly calling for a parent, in vain.

As we all sit or stand around watching the Crowne for chicklet activity, we have many people passing by all day and evening. Many do come to us to see what we are doing and to see the falcons in our scope. And then, we have many others who pass by and smile, or point, or nod to each other. It makes me understand what some animals go through living in a zoo! Later on, I was overheard mumbling “What, no peanuts for the monkeys?” I guess this is what a bit of fatigue will do.

July 11: Day 3 [from Eve Ticknor] — Loud, frantic calling was heard from both chicklets first thing this morning as they saw Diana fly by, without breakfast. She landed on the southwest corner of the Crowne and they could see her by getting close to the wall on the south end and peering around at her. Our young female is finally getting up onto the ledge and spending a bit more time staying there. She finally made it to the north end and back. Diana came in with food. She plucked it and fed bits to the male, but egnored the female who came over and got a bite before Diana took off with it. The chicklet was later delivered a small meal around 11 am. Her brother is doing a lot of moving around and wing flapping today.

A man was seen on the roof of Tower B, and, of course, the adult peregrines were right on him!

Connor made a food drop around 5 pm and the fun started. While watching the monitor, the female grabbed the food and hurried over to the wall to eat. Her brother went over many times to beg, or to try stealing some. She never gave in and mantled her food (covering it with her wings). Suddenly he grabbed from between her legs and had a turn at eating. She grabbed it back, and the food fight got ernest, each taking it back from the other, the piece getting smaller and smaller. Finally she had a small piece of what looked like a leg or wing, and he ran over and grabbed it right out of her beak and swallowed it. Just prior to this event, she had gone over a bitten her brother!

Did I mention fun? Well, it was just to start for some of us……… AT 5:45, with no flapping, the male took off for his first flight! Stress levels went up and many were off and running. He actually took 3 flights today!

He left his ledge at 5:45pm and his flying was good with strong wingbeats. He left the southern end of the east side of the Crowne Plaza Hotel and circled around, flying north past the hotel, over Queen St and along the east side of Tower C. There he attempted to land on the middle of that side and bounced off, falling about 2 feet, then spreading his wings out and recovering nicely. He then flew and landed on the north side of the Podium Building. After a while there, he took off but was tiring and landed on Sparks St Mall, where he was picked up by Chris Traynor and brought back to the Constitution Square.


Chris Traynor rescued our male chick from the Sparks St Mall.

Bill Petrie from Innis Point Bird Observatory was on hand to check the new falcon and attach a leg band.

Four hands required for efficient banding.

37-day-old Gatsby sporting his new “jewelry.”

Bill Petrie was already there for the Watch. He went through the banding procedure and our little guy now has new jewelry! Chris and I took him back “home” and left, though we noticed the adults flying around and being very vocal. We both began to think that maybe? But no one who was watching, seemed to have seen anything. When I got in my front door, I had a call from a friend who was guarding a little falcon who was sitting on a ramp for an underground garage below the Crowne! I returned downtown and sure enough, there he was waiting for me. I was given gloves and picked him up with no fuss on his part. A shirt was thrown over him and we went to the Constitution Square to get the rescue box. That room is rather hot and I was concerned about leaving him anywhere, so he came home with me and will be returned first thing in the morning to his lofty home, hopefully to stay there for a bit, resting and eating, before leaving once more.

Oh, yes, in honour of living life on the edge our chicklets are now known as Gatsby and Daisy.

July 10: Day 2 [from Eve Ticknor] — I think today we were definitely in the running for the best wind tunnel in Ontario. Strong winds and cold temperatures had the volunteers in layers of jackets and hoods, a quick change from yesterday! We kept sending wishes up to our chicklets to stay put until there would be less wind and less traffic.

This morning, Josée and I watched our little male up on the ledge but could not see his sister at all, not even on the monitor. So the first question was, had he flown and were we looking at the little female? Around 10, I went up to the 21st floor of the Scotia McLeod building and looked out the lunchroom window. A super view of the entire ledge, and right across the street. So lucky, it is amazing that they get any work done. Anyhow, I did see both chicklets – the male on the ledge and a pile of feathers in the northernmost corner that suddenly lifted a pair of wings and then a head – so all was well. But before all that, Connor had brought food to the northern end where the male had run and flapped his way. It was small, and very orange. Sorry, little oriole.

At one point, both adults were on Place de Ville Towers, 1 on C and the other on A. Two pigeons flew between them, and quickly made dives as both peregrines were after them. Another miss! Another pigeon made a narrow escape when Diana suddenly chased it down Albert St, but had to give up when it dove below the street light level. Hunting was not going so well today. Occasional small meals were brought to one or the other chick. Once a few people watching the monitor claimed the food was a mouse. However, I have never seen a mouse yield so amny white feathers when plucked.

Shortly before I went up for the high view, both adults were on either end of the ledge, like bookends. Now, where were the 2 brown books?

Although the female still sleeps in a heap, her brother is now sleeping mostly upright with his head tucked in his back. There is still some baby in him as once he flopped down on his tummy and had a long nap. He is doing much more wing flapping, both running and still, some for fairly prolonged times. It won’t be long now. He has lost much of his down and works diligently at getting rid of as much more as he can.

This evening he made his hurried way to the northern end, so I went over to Queen St and left Phil on Albert St. He spent some time peering around the wall towards the west, doing it again back at the southern end. Back there, Chris Traynor joined us. As we watched and talked, suddenly Chris said “There he goes”, and Phil was off like a shot, as was Chris, while I am standing there saying, “Something is wrong with the flight”! I’ll say it was. It was Connor! A little brown and beige face was looking around for the father who went out of sight. What a rush! We had a good laugh, and soon packed up for the night.

Maybe tomorrow?

July 9: Day 1 [from Eve Ticknor] — And, we’re offfff! At least we have started. Fortunately our chicklets are not yet ready, though I have a feeling our little guy is gearing up for the fun. He is spending most of his time on the upper ledge, looking quite comfortable there. He has been seen doing running wing flapping along the ledge, and has made it to the northern end of the hotel for the first time this evening. He was up on the ledge waiting for breakfast before I got there around 5:30 am.

His sister was sitting just below him, also waiting. Food drops were made at 6am for him and just after 7am for her. At least we are going with him and her due to the size difference, to be confirmed only if they need rescuing when they will be banded.

Volunteerism is very thin so far, undoubtedly due to the late start, vacations, etc. However we did have “old” friends come by to see our family, and ourselves, of course.

Much of the day was quiet, unless an adult was spotted and then calling issued from within the ledge, largely ignored. There was some more wing flapping, and lots of napping over the mid day period. Dinner was delivered around 6:15pm. Both adults showed up either one at a time, or sometimes together. They did lots of incentive flying off and on all day, into the evening. Diana seems to finally know what role she is here for and does more mothering than in the past 2 years.

July 8 [from Eve Ticknor] — What a morning! Phil and I moved the equipment to Constitution Square, ready for tomorrow morning at 6 am, for our official start. Our little chicklet is quite comfortable sitting on the upper ledge for long periods of time. I hope he waits till the weekend before he tries out his wings. His sister is content to sit on the gravel and watch from there.

While we were downtown, we noticed that the adults were flying around and around and screaming a lot, while the chicklet sat where he could see his parents and call and call for food, which he wasn’t getting. I went to the Crowne to see what was disturbing the birds.

When I reached the penthouse, there was a man coming down. He said he had been the reason and apologized a lot. He had been sent to the roof because his company was under contact to do roof work, though not right now. He had been taking photos of various parts of the roof yesterday, with no interference from the falcons. However today, he had just started when he suddenly saw a falcon headed straight for him! He ran fast for the stairs and came inside. Then he realized his cell phone had dropped out as he ran, but didn’t want to disturb the birds to go get it.

I got in touch with maintenance and a man came up with a hard hat and went up to retrieve the phone for him. He was very nice. While waiting he said that they had a contact to do several roofs in town. They are a Green company and do Green roofs. The ones they were to do all had little trees growing out of the gravel up there! We talked about not good times and better times to work on this roof due to the falcons and he seemed agreeable to Fall to early Spring.

July 7 [from Eve Ticknor] — Thanks, Marian, I had thought the other day while watching that we have 1 male (the jumper) and 1 female. As they are only a day apart in age, there should not be a big difference in size other than gender. Time to start thinking of names.

July 7 [from Marion] — 7:30 a.m. this morning I stopped by to look at the monitor at the Constitutional Square Building. One chick jumped up and down off the ledge several times in a space of 10 minutes. I could also see some vocalizing. No sign of the parents. I think it was waiting for the parents to return with breakfast. The other chick finally emerged from the corner. This one looks really big (it must be a female). While I was there it showed no attempt at jumping up on the ledge.

I also checked the monitor again at noon. Around 12:15 both parents arrived, one with lunch. The images on the monitor were a bit dark but I was able to see the chicks feed. The big one looks like to be a bit of a glutton. The other one had to grab pieces when he/she could; go off to eat it, then return for some more. After about 5 minutes it was able to wrestle the food from the other and go off to have a good feed. It was still eating when I left.

July 5 [from Eve Ticknor] — I spent some time this afternoon watching our chicklets on the monitor in the lobby of Constitution Square. They are getting much browner as their feathers are coming in and very big. At first they were napping against the wall about 2 or 3 columns up from the nest area. Then first one, then the other started walking around and flapping while running a bit towards the southeast corner of the hotel. This was around 4. After awhile of moving back and forth, suddenly one jumped up on the upper ledge and, thankfully, back down again. This is very early for jumping up to start.

Both parents came to check on their offspring but left after Diana clearly screamed at Connor to get food! Phil joined me for a while. We left after 6, not having seen the adults returning and seeing the chicklets alternately peeking over the edge and napping. As I drove away, I first saw Diana on the antenna of the Carlisle Building, then Connor delivering dinner. I’ll check in again tomorrow.

June 14 [from Eve Ticknor] — Our intrepid family is growing rapidly. Phil and I were up this afternoon and I took a few photos of both chicklets and both adults.

When we arrived up on the roof, Connor was resting near the corner while his chicklets were sleeping. A few minutes later, one was awake and started preening. Then it slumped back down. the other lifted its head briefly. As we were leaving Diana swooped in, near us and stared at us, making sure we were going.Once downstairs we turned on the monitor to watch. Connor and Diana had changed places, and the young were briefly begging for food. None coming, they went back to sleep. What else to do? The building security people were enjoying the monitor as it is directly opposite the main desk!

June 5 [from Eve Ticknor] — We now have 2 chicklets, with 1 egg to go. Apparently the hole was the next one hatching! Chris and I watched for a while this afternoon and were delighted to get to see both babies being carefully cared for by Diana. Connor was nearby.

June 4 [from Eve Ticknor] — Chris Traynor got to see our first chicklet, hatched today! He saw a hole in egg #2, so we await egg #3.

June 1 [from Phil] — At 11:45 am, Connor is sitting up on one of the light fixtures on the south facing wall of tower C. Yesterday he was watching half a dozen gulls from the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza fly around the area. He has had enough and swoops down and and grazes a gull. He is being an excellent guardian and mate, as always!

May 30 [from Eve Ticknor] — I was up to the roof for a nest check this afternoon. Though it was quite cloudy, I could see that both adults were still doing nest duties. I didn’t get a chance to see any eggs as I was being watched! The falcons had no intention of switching while I was up there and were prepared to wait me out. Of course, they won.

May 6 [from Eve Ticknor] — Thanks to Chris Traynor, today we can confirm 3 Grade A large!! Keep your fingers crossed for a safe hatch somewhere around June 5th.

May 5 [from Eve Ticknor] — I can tell you that Diana is brooding near the southeast corner of the Crowne. Her nest is just south of the first column closest to the southern end. Keep your fingers crossed for a good hatching. My guess is that she started brooding over the weekend. I expect the hatch in about 33 days.

May 5 [from Duff McLeod] — My office looks out into the doorway in the north side of the Crowne Plaza where the illuminated sign used to be and where the falcons eat. Today I have noticed that the falcons are flying to and from the northeast corner of the Crowne Plaza tower – the portion under the dining room overhang. I mention this because they usually fly to and from the west side where I understand the nest is.

April 29 [from Eve Ticknor] — I was on the roof of Tower 1 this afternoon and saw Diana on the southeast end, resting and not disturbed and having myself and 2 others with me watching her. Keep your fingers crossed. Just a note to let you know the MNR has a Conservation Officer investigating the disappearance of the eggs.

April 29 [from Nadine] — Just to let you know, Diana has been sitting most of today on the southeast corner of Crowne Plaza and we saw her and Connor mating again briefly over the lunch hour!

April 26 [from Phil] — 9 am. Connor has just landed on the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza and is eating something. He starts to vocalize and I see Diana come flying in to the southeast corner with more vocalizing from Connor. She stays only briefly though and takes off and lands on the antenna of the Carlisle building where she seems content to stay.

April 24 [from Mary C. Hurley] — Morning all. At 0700, falcon perched on southeast corner of Crowne Plaza in the sun – not sure which, from a block away without glasses looked smallish. Connor seems to favour that corner.

April 23 [from Joan Remsu] — At 3:10, I was looking to the north out my window on the third floor of the second tower of the Constitution Square Building.

Both falcons were sitting on the east side of the Crowne. I think Connor (it looked like the smaller of the two with a very white breast) was sitting at the second column from the southeast corner, and Diana was sitting on the northeast corner. At 3:17, Connor took off to the southwest corner of Tower A of Place de Ville. He took off at 3:20, circling the tower towards the north side. Diana is still sitting on the northeast corner.

April 23 [from Melanie Moore, Ottawa Falcon Watch Volunteer Coordinator] — Hello Ottawa Falcon Watch Volunteers and Potential New Volunteers,

This season started with some excitement after Diana was sighted brooding on the same ledge as last year on the Crowne Plaza but, unfortunately, that nest and any eggs that may have been present are no longer there. We are unsure as to the circumstances but still hope that Diana and Connor will attempt again.

In other cities, successful nests have happened as late as July so there is still plenty of time and we will hope for Diana and Connor to produce a family this year. When a new nest is discovered, we will update everyone and set a date for an orientation and the start of the 2008 Ottawa Falcon Watch.

In the meantime, keep your eyes to the skies and report any sightings of our Falcon pair.

I hope when we do get a nest that you will be available to volunteer for the 2008 Ottawa Falcon Watch. Please spread the word that volunteers will be needed no matter how late our Falcons nest.

April 21 [from Eve Ticknor] — I was downtown near the Crowne Plaza Hotel this afternoon but saw only Diana. She was up on the Carlisle antenna which she seems to have adopted now. She was resting and eventually preening. She seems to like the triangular section and was tucked inside it rather than on it. If you look at the antennas, remember to look all over, not just on the parts we think of as good roosts.

April 21 [from Nadine Fox] — I have seen one falcon quite a bit this morning on the southeast corner of Crowne Plaza – in fact he(?) was walking along the ledge at one point then dropped down behind it for a few seconds so I could only see his head. Then he flew off. [Note from Eve: This was most likely Connor.] We will keep our eyes peeled!

April 20 [from Eve Ticknor] — Around 5:30 this evening, Connor was on the east side of the Crowne Plaza Hotel near the south end. About 20 minutes later, I saw Diana on the antenna on the Carlisle (formerly Bradson) Building. Shortly after neither were in sight.

April 19 [from Joan Remsu] — Right now, from my perch on the 27th floor of the QET, I can see two grey birds at the same time (about 6 pm) – on the two south corners of the Crowne ledge. The larger one is on the southeast corner. Hope someone can get a closer look.

April 18 [from Eve Ticknor] — I have now seen both adults, although it took lots of waiting and looking. I went on the roof of Tower 2 (Constitution Square) around 5 pm but saw and heard nothing. Phil joined me about 6. Once in a while I would walk around the perimeter, looking and listening, seeing pigeons and a few gulls only. Around 6:15, Connor flew up to the southeast end of Tower B (Albert and Kent), landing a couple of metres from the corner. He would walk along a bit, then stand up and stretch his neck to look just over the window washing rail, then walk a bit, stretch, etc., until he got to the corner, sort like an avian version of whales’ spyhopping! He was definitely searching, but for whom? Diana?

He then flew away, and we followed his flight to Parliament Hill. He landed just under the edge of the peaked roof of the West Block, where there is a light stripe. He stayed there quite a while.

Meanwhile, why was he at Tower B and had been seen there several times? I went over to get up to the subroof, a well that was not covered with wire like the others. Maybe Diana was in there, injured or dead.

I went to Security, explained what I was up to and heard, “Not happening”! The Security company is new and tighter. I was told that I needed permission from the property owners and it was Friday night so no go. I persuaded the guard to call someone. After a long silence on the phone, I heard, “Tell her not to fall off the roof” and I knew I’d be going up! Once there, I was glad not to see a falcon body.

I came back down and met up with Phil who walked me to my car at the bank parking lot. We stood there chewing various ideas over. Of course I was constantly looking around at antennas and buildings as we talked. I picked up my binoculars, as something looked different on the Carlisle Building antenna. Sure enough it was a falcon. I got out my scope and there was Diana. Joan and Einar were with us, too, and we all looked at her. She was preening and looking around. In the blink of an eye, she was gone and none of us saw where.

And so, the mystery remains. What happened to cause them to abandon their nest, but stay in the area? And what happened to the 2 eggs? We will never know, but we are happy to know the adults are well and staying nearby. They didn’t look as if they were looking for a new nest location. The window for a second nest is still there, but not for too long.

Keep your eyes and ears open in case anyone gets more information about a new location.

April 18 [from Scott Holliday] — All afternoon I could hear one of the falcons calling/vocalising but was unable to locate exactly where the sound was originating, I was on the patio of Place de Ville (Albert side) and could hear a falcon and the sound seemed to be coming from the rooftop of the Crowne. Being adventurous I walked the perimeter of the Crowne to see if I could locate but was unable to, but as of 1600 when I left for home I could still hear the occasional vocalisation emanating from above. Will go upstairs and view Crowne from Tower “A” of Place de Ville this morning to see if I can see the rooftop, I will be able to see the East ledge from my vantage point. Will update later this morning. Just had a close look at the SE corner of the Crowne and nothing at all except for something sticking up near the inside corner. I know there’s a Falconwatcher in Tower “C” who might be able to see the rooftop of the Crowne, but my tower is too short to see the rooftop. The item at the inside corner is unidentifiable to me even with binoculars, but it is dark grey to black in colour.

April 18 [from Nadine Fox] — I last saw Connor around 7:30 a.m. Thursday morning – he had run a bird into a window (Constitution Square Tower A) then caught it and he sat on the ledge below us for about 5 minutes clutching the bird and squawking. He then flew northwest around Tower B and was gone. We haven’t seen her all week. Will keep you posted.

April 17 [from Eve Ticknor] — The east most Tower is B. If you are on Albert St, with the Crowne on your left, Tower C is the left one, Tower A in the middle and B on the right (CAB). I suspect the falcon being heard and seen may be Connor. He was seen earlier. It sounds as if we should concentrate in this area for now. I will go up on the roof tomorrow, Friday, around 4:30 pm.

April 17 [from Joan Remsu] — I heard a lot of screeching – a falcon flew from the Crowne to Place de ville Tower A (east-most tower), circled back towards Constitution Square, then went back to Tower A – it’s sitting there now.

April 17 [from Eve Ticknor] — Please keep looking! Chris and I were over there for close to 2 hours this afternoon with no sight or sound of either, and no eggs!

April 17 [from Joan Remsu] — I have seen one falcon sitting from time to time on the Crowne or on the spike on Place de Ville next to the Crown over the last two days. Einar and I saw a falcon fly to the antenna on 500 Laurier Avenue around 7:30 last evening (April 16). It sat on the tower for about 2 minutes, then flew back to the Crowne.

April 17 [from Eve Ticknor] — Both Chris Traynor and I were up on the roof of Contitution Square and our falcons are gone! We heard nothing and saw nothing, from all angles. We then went over to the Crowne Plaza Hotel and up to the maintenance space between the ledges with Security and Engineering and looked out on the ledge itself. Again, nothing, not even eggs or egg shells!

We are asking everyone to please listen for the falcons and look out any windows where you are working. Hopefully they will have soon found another building for their nest and we can watch from a new location. For now, we have little to go on. I will update as soon as we have anything new to report. Please send me any reports you have, sightings of even 1 Peregrine!

April 15 [from Eve Ticknor] — I was up on the roof across from the nest ledge this afternoon, as I was yesterday, but still have had no luck in seeing how many eggs are in this year’s nest. I’ll keep trying as I can.

April 10 [from Eve Ticknor] — I went to the roof of Constitution Square around 11:30 this morning and saw Diana on her nest scrape. It was too windy to put up my scope, so I wasn’t able to look for eggs, but she is most definitely brooding. My guess is that she has been on her nest for the past 1 or 2 days, so counting forward 33 days to hatch…

April 6 [from Phil] — Yesterday morning at 8:45 Connor was perched between the second and third columns on the northwest side of the Crowne Plaza. I watched him for some 15 minutes and all seemed quiet, no sign of Diana.

Today at about the same time, Connor was in the same area. This time I heard some vocalizing. He then flew off to land on the antenna of the Bradson building. He chased some sparrows around the Crowne, then returned to his vantage point on the antenna.

As I looked back at the hotel, I saw Diana on the northwest corner, vocalizing. Connor flew over to her and they mated briefly. When I left, Diana was on the same corner and Conner was inside the nest area.

April 4 [from Eve Ticknor] — If you work near the Crowne Plaza, please keep an eye on the mating of our falcons, as I am expecting Diana to start brooding soon and I won’t be able to get on the roof until next week. What I need to know is the time when Diana is no longer seen on a regular basis and when mating is no longer going on. Please be my eyes for the next little while!


News about Hamilton’s falcons
from Mick Street, Ancaster OntarioHamilton Community Peregrine Project (HCPP) lead monitor Audrey Gamble advises that around 10:30 a.m. yesterday, Saturday, 30 March, the first egg of 2008 was seen clearly in the Sheraton Hamilton Peregrine Falcon nest. Peregrines typically lay two to four red-brown eggs at alternate day intervals, so by Monday we will hope to see another. The female, Madame X, has laid four eggs in the Sheraton nest each season since she started her breeding career in 2001. The adults will share the responsibility of incubating the eggs for 30 to 35 days.

The progress of the birds can be followed on the HCPP web cam.

HCPP will also have a television monitor and information station set up in the Jackson Square shopping mall in a few days. The Sheraton Hamilton and Jackson Square are located just east of the corner of King St. West and Bay Street in downtown Hamilton.


March 29 [from Phil] — Today at about 1 pm Eve and I spotted Diana on the southwest corner of the Crowne Plaza. We watched her for quite a while and she seemed relaxed, although she was keeping an eye on a group of crows flying in the area. No sign of Connor at that time.

March 26 [from Nadine] — Both of the falcons are really sticking around today – more mating – mostly around southeast corner of crowne plaza. P.S. who is Odyssey?

Note: Odyssey is Diana and Connor’s first offspring, born 13 June 2005.

March 26 [from Eve Ticknor] — Keep your eyes open! With a third falcon here, there might be a fight and/or chase unless this is Odyssey who will be made to leave. As mating is going on, a third is unwelcome! Keep me posted about this situation, please!

March 26 [from Richard Brouillet] — Thursday March 20, I saw the two Peregrines playing in the wind over the Crowne Plaza and a third Peregrine on the Coates Building 3 mins later (Arctic race).

March 24 [from Nadine] — The falcons have been quite active lately, especially last week (I believe we even saw 3 of them – possible?) but this morning just witnessed them mating on the north east corner of 360 Albert (Constitution Square) – right in front of us!

March 7 [from Eve Ticknor] — This afternoon our falcons were barely visible through the snow on the west side of the Crowne Plaza Hotel. Good thing snow doesn’t bother them!

March 6 [from Eve Ticknor] — This afternoon, around 4:20, I drove by the Coats Building at Tunney’s Pasture and found both our Peregrines there, on the north face, near the west end. Although they usually perch on the west face, there was too much snow this time. Looking forward to our 12th season starting in a month, I hope.

February 21 [from Eve Ticknor] — Yesterday afternoon I saw Diana perched on a column on the south side of the Coats Building around 4:30 pm as I was heading toward downtown. There was no sight of Connor either there or at the Crowne. Maybe he was off hunting.

February 14 [from Marian] — When I arrived at the corner of Albert and Kent this morning around 8:15, both falcons were on the east side of the Crowne Plaza. Connor was on the southeast corner and Diana was next to the third column on the northeast side. Shortly afterward Connor flew off around the west side of the Crowne Plaza, then disappeared.

Yesterday, there were feathers floating down from Tower B. One of the falcon must have been somewhere on top of Tower B with his or her breakfast.

February 12 [from Eve Ticknor] — Around 4:30 this afternoon I went looking for our falcons and found both of them on the west side of the Coats Building at Tuney’s Pasture. Diana was on top of a column near the north end while Connor was tucked in a corner over the top bank of windows nearest the southern-most column on the same side.

February 6 [from Eve Ticknor] — Today there were 2 adult falcons on the south face of the Coats Building around noon. As it was snowing, I couldn’t tell who was who but they were a pillar apart. It looked as if 1 was eating. Spring is coming.

January 10 [from Richard Brouillet] — Just thought I’d let you know that I saw both Peregrines hunting yesterday (Jan 9 approx 1:10 p.m.) around the Place du Portage complex in Hull. First four pigeons flying very fast followed by 1 falcon and then the 2nd quickly after that (less than 5 seconds).

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