Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Three red-tail chicks confirmed for Tompkins Square

Three chicks are confirmed for Tompkins Square red-tailed hawks, Christo and Amelia.

The photo below (taken yesterday) shows one chick looking towards the camera, a second chick head to its right, and - get out your magnifying glass - a third white head barely visible behind the sticks to the left of the center chick. Amelia is on the far right. The last time Tompkins saw three hawk chicks was back in 2016.

Tompkins Square red-tail chick

Tompkins Square red-tail chick

Tompkins Square red-tail chick

The nestlings are already stretching their wings, so I hope they show us more of themselves soon.

Tompkins Square red-tail chick

Amelia is an extremely dedicated mom, having spent the last several weeks in the nest incubating eggs and subsequently sheltering her chicks. I've barely seen her out of the nest at all, but I caught her taking a short break yesterday when she perched on the cross of St Brigid's church.

Amelia takes a break from nest duties

After spending so much time in the cramped nest, I imagine stretching out like this feels really good.

Amelia

Amelia

Amelia

Even on break, Amelia doesn't go far, staying close enough to keep the nest within sight. Below, she perches in a tree within the park.

Amelia

Meanwhile, Christo has taken to hunting rats around the dog run now that there are no dogs in there to pose a threat. The dog run has been temporarily closed due to social distancing rules, and it's been interesting to see Christo adapt to this change in his environment. Normally, this is not a safe area for him to be, but he's now taking advantage of it being available to him.

Christo on the prowl for rats

He quickly caught a rat and delivered the fatal neck bite.

Christo finishes off a rat

Christo prepares to take a rat to his kids

Not wasting any time, he flew the rat to the nest where Amelia served it up to the kids. Dinner delivery accomplished, Christo took a little break himself.

Christo and the American flag

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