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Central Park South

The southern part of Central Park has been a mystery this year.  Sightings of two new hawks, plus Pale Male and Octavia in the southern part of the park have made it difficult to figure out what's going on.

While I didn't believe it at first, was there is strong evidence that Octavia may have been spending time with both males, so we may have had only three hawks.

Since Octavia has begun sitting on the nest uptown, observers have only seen a single hawk down at Central Park South.  So, the question I've been trying to answer is does this hawk have a brooding mate in a nest we haven't found or was what we assumed to be two pairs in late February and early March actually just three hawks?

I didn't discover the answer on Wednesday but had fun trying!


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Central Park Hawks

Today was a nice day in Central Park.  I had the two Red-tailed hawks trying to establish a nest on CPW, (now working on a nest on 322 CPW.)  Then a juvenile Red-tailed Hawk on the American Museum of Natural History followed by Sharp-shinned Hawk in the Evodia Field. 

My next stop was Fifth Avenue, where Octavia is now brooding.  Pale Male was tending to the nest (rearranging twigs as is his habit) and she returned to the nest.

A quick walk down to Central Park South uncovered one Red-tailed hawk there. Seven hawks, not too bad for a brief afternoon visit to the park.


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Washington Square Nesting Season Begins

Rosie and Bobby are nesting again.  Rosie is sitting on the nest and it looks like she's rolling at least one egg. 

The New York Times has withdrawn from sponsoring the web camera, so hawk watchers may need to come to the park in person if they want a live view of the hawks this year.

Update: 3/13/13, News comes from one of the chat moderators that NYU will be hosting a camera on their own this year.  The camera will be installed in a few weeks.


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Saw-whet Still Here and a Spring Report

At least one Northern Saw-whet Owl continues to be seen in Central Park.  It's a joy to watch, even when it tries it's best to hide from bird watchers!

As winter ends, it looks as though many Red-tailed Hawk pairs in Manhattan have started preparing for brooding.  Nests have been rebuilt and relocated slightly in Inwood Hill Park and Highbridge Parks, and other nests have been tidied up.

As of today, I know the following:

  • Inwood Hill has a new nest which will be easy to watch and is further away from the owls in the park.
  • Highbridge Park also has a new nest.  The old one was destroyed during Sandy.
  • The 175th and Fort Washington pair have been seen this winter, but I don't know where they are nesting this year.
  • CUNY's uptown campus has activity according to The Origin of Species blog.
  • The Saint John's nest seems to have lost its male, and it's unclear just yet how things are developing.
  • The Randalls Island nest seems to be in good shape.
  • There is a pair trying to establish themselves in the '90s of Central Park.
  • Pale Male and his mate look to be all set for Spring.
  • The Central Park South pair with a nest they built last year on the Crown Building and a secondary nest on The Plaza Hotel, look to be all set for Spring.
  • The Washington Square Park nest is ready to go, but it looks like it might be without a webcam this year.

Let me know if you have additional news.


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Central Park Tennis Courts

Two Red-tails appeared over the Reservoir this afternoon, soared together and then came back down to perch about 100 yards apart near the Tennis Courts in Central Park.  This is the pair that was bringing twigs to 350 Central Park West earlier in the week.

They stayed in the same trees for about twenty minutes, and didn't like they were going to be moving soon, so I moved on.   Let's hope they stay in the park this spring.


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Plaza Hotel Pair

There looks to be some question as to whether the Plaza Hotel pair might be Pale Male and Octavia building a secondary nest. 

Looking at the photographs I've taken over the last two days, these look like a new pair to my eyes. Both the male and female look different than Pale Male and Octavia.

(Certainly, this pair has ventured up to Pale Male's territory over the last few weeks and it might be one of the Central Park South hawks that was mistaken for Octavia up north.  This would explain matching field marks.)

The Plaza Hotel pair also have a nest on the Crown Building.  It is in a better location from the Plaza, but sadly out of view from the street.  I hope they nest on the Plaza, but if they don't we won't be able to see the eyasses for some time.


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