Math Problem For Pale Male and Octavia

Although I hope I'm wrong, I can't get the math to work out for Pale Male and Octavia. 

Octavia started sitting on the nest on March 17th.  When you calculate a hatch date, you start with 28-35 days for incubation, add a few days just in case the female starts sitting before laying eggs, and add a week more since the eggs can take a week to lay, and if only the last one hatches it will be later.  That's at worst case, 35 plus 14 days, or May 5th.  Today is May 15th.

The "regulars" who follow Pale Male and Octavia year round didn't see them copulate this season. 

So, the nest most likely won't hatch. 

When Lola was infertile, she would sit for a long time on the nest before giving up each year.  I think we're seeing the same thing with Octavia this year.

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927 Fifth Avenue Intruders

Two Red-tailed Hawks, other than Pale Male and Ocatvia, flew over the Fifth Avenue nest on Saturday evening causing both Octavia and Pale Male to leave the nest.  Usually we only see a single intruder, usually a single juvenile or adult hawk enter the territory.  Two adult hawks together seems unusual for this time year.  While it was impossible to know, it could have been the San Remo pair investigating how their neighbors are doing.

The video has Pale Male on the nest and then leaving, Octavia returning, and then Octavia settling down.  Estimates are that this nest is due to hatch sometime this week.  No feedings have been seen yet, although Pale Male has brought a small mouse to the nest, which may be a positive sign.

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Fifth Avenue Brooding

I made two visits to Fifth Avenue today.  Once in the morning, where things seemed to be like they had for the last few weeks with both hawks escorting out intruders and making brief visits to the nest.  But when I visited this evening, things had changed.  Octavia clearly had started brooding.  She was sitting tight on the nest for the first time this season!

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American Woodcock

American Woodcocks have been migrating through New York City this past week.  I caught up with one on Saturday in the Ramble of Central Park.  It was doing it's best to stay hidden, which it did an excellent job of doing!

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Fifth Avenue

Hawk watchers at Fifth Avenue got to see many nest visits, watch Pale Male chase off a juvenile Red-tail and share food with Octavia over the last few days. We all are looking forward to the 2019 nesting season.

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Fifth Avenue

I didn't get much of a chance to watch Pale Male and Octavia that much this weekend.  On Saturday, I caught both of them on the Carlyle Hotel.  On Sunday, I found Pale Male in a tree by the Boathouse parking lot.

What I found strange this weekend was listening to multiple tour guides and folks claiming to be "locals" who seemed stuck in the 2004/2005 period.  They gave lectures to tourists about Pale Male and Lola, talked about celebrities who haven't lived on Fifth Avenue for years, asked if the nest was "new" because they knew the old one had been taken down, and other nonsense. 

The entire time frame of the nest being taken down, including the protests, and the installation of the nest cradle lasted only a few weeks.  That was over fourteen years ago.  Folks, it's time to put away your old copies of Marie Winn's books and Frederic Lilien's DVDs and catch up to the present!  A lot has happened in fourteen years!

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Fifth Avenue

Nest visits by Pale Male and Octavia have been difficult to witness these last few days.  These images are from the last few days.  With the exception of two Peregrine Falcons, who harrased Pale Male one afternoon, it has been a quiet few days.

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Fifth Avenue, No Changes

The hawk watchers on Fifth Avenue have been expecting to see Pale Male and Octavia begin to copulate as it's after Valentine's Day, but there have been no reports yet.  I been seeing a nest visit around 2 p.m. and then various random sightings over the past week or so, which is what I saw today.

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Fifth Avenue

This afternoon was relatively quiet on Fifth Avenue.  The pair flew together and chased off a Coopers Hawk and a Red-tailed Hawk.  But there wasn't a late day visit to the nest.  We did get to see some nice views of Octavia, who at first glance like Pale Male in the golden light of dusk.

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Limited Views

I only got to see one visit to the nest by Octavia and then got to see Pale Male on a balcony a few blocks north of the nest building tonight.  But it was nice to see both of them even though there wasn't much action.

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Nest Visits And Intruders

While I haven't seen Pale Male and Octavia copulate this season, they've been spending time together, both have been working on the nest, and chasing out intruders into their territory.  It's so nice for another year of hawk nesting to begin once again.

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Enjoying Pale Male

The week of Valentine's Day is the unofficial start of hawk watching season in New York City.  Hawks who have been doing minor nest refurbishment since January, now start to copulate and getting ready for egg laying in mid to late late March.  I gave a talk on Pale Male last year and thought it might be helpful to share some of the slides as a primer on what is going to happen over the next six months.

I encourage anyone who hasn't watched a Red-tailed Hawk nest to do so this year.  It's incredibly enjoyable.  The "hawk bench", were the best viewing is from, is just next to the Hans Christian Andersen statue on the west side of the Model Boat Pond. And if you aren't near the Fifth Avenue nest, there are many alternative nests to choose from in New York, as well as may other locations throughout the country.

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Pale Male and Octavia on The Carlyle Hotel

Another good sign Pale Male and Octavia are getting ready for spring, was spotting them both sitting together on the The Carlyle Hotel.  Pale Male joined Octavia on a floodlight, before moving over to the floodlight on the right.  He then went to the "Linda" building which is a block south of the nest before heading north.  Octavia continued to perch on the same floodlight.

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More Nest Refurbishment on Fifth Avenue

The Fifth Avenue nest had both hawks in it late in the afternoon.  Sadly you could see the shadows being cast by the buildings on Billionaires Row every so often.  When I arrived both hawks were on the nest.  Pale Male left leaving Octavia on the nest, and she left after about half an hour.  Pale Male returned with a twig, stopping first on a nearby building.  After about fifteen minutes he glided down to a tree just inside the park, before taking off.  Although, we're having a warm streak, nest refurbishment is the surest sign I know that spring is right around the corner.

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Nest Refurbishment on Fifth Avenue

While it's still winter, Red-tailed Hawks across the region are starting to tidy up their nests and get ready for spring.  Around Valentine's Day pairs of hawks will begin to copulate followed by brooding in mid to late March.

Today, I caught Pale Male and Octavia working on their Fifth Avenue nest.  It always seems like each wants to undo what the other has done, but it always works out.  Octavia left the nest first, followed by Pale Male about fifteen minutes later.  I was able to catch up to Pale Male in one of his favorite roosting trees at dusk.  

Pale Male is on the left and Octavia is on the right.  Note his smaller size, lighter color and thinner head.  Notice her rounder, wider head, darker color, and rounder eyes with a light lower eye ring.

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Pale Male

I caught up with Pale Male while exiting the park on Saturday.  He was on a Metropolitan Museum of Art security camera on the north side of the building.  He only stayed perched long enough to get a few seconds of video.

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