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Archive for November, 2016

Thanksgiving Week Falcon Watches – 11/23-11/27/16

Sunday, November 27th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher Carol P.

I was out and about most days this week, checking on our falcons.  Most mornings and some evenings I see Genesee down at the Charlotte/Summerville area.  He usually shows up on the Shumway antenna between 6:30 – 7:00 am and heads out to hunt.  Now that it’s getting dark early, Genesee will show up between 4:30 – 5:00 pm before flying south.  I usually join watchers Dana and Kathy O for these early morning and late afternoon Genesee Watches.

On Friday morning, Genesee had two falcon encounters.  They may have been the same falcon, but he reacted differently in both situations.  The first one happened when a falcon flew in from the south, low over the river.  Genesee spotted the falcon, who may have been hunting ducks on the river.  He started to alarm kak and took off.  Dana and I watched as Genesee chased the other falcon over the O’Rorke bridge and then return to the Shumway antenna.  We know he is very territorial right now, chasing Coopers Hawks, Merlins, Red-tailed Hawks and Bald Eagles, so it did not surprise us that he would chase a Peregrine out of his area.

About an hour later, Genesee became very antsy, looking straight up.  This time he started to ee-chup, over and over, very loudly.  He never left the Shumway antenna.  While I was watching Genesee, Dana spotted a Peregrine flying overhead. This is definitely what got Genesee’s attention.  We thought that it may have been a female, since his behavior was different than the first encounter, ee-chup vs. alarm kakking.  Was he trying to call her down?  Being able to watch this young falcon’s behavior has been fascinating.  🙂

Over the past week, I’ve seen Genesee, Beauty & Dot.ca, one falcon at Seneca Towers (too far to ID), one falcon at Hawkeye on the railing (based on size a male, but I could not ID) and the unbanded female at the Brighton Site.

Here are some pictures from my watches.  Enjoy!

November 23, 2016

Genesee eating on the Shumway antenna.



November 24, 2016

An early morning sunrise over the Genesee River.  A glimpse of Genesee’s world.



November 25, 2016

1-falcon-at-hawkeye-11-25-16<— Hawkeye – Unidentified falcon on railing.  Male based on size.

2-beauty-eating-on-base-of-mercury-11-25-16<— Downtown – Beauty eating on base of Mercury.

3-bs-unbanded-female-11-25-16<— Brighton Site (BS) – Unbanded female.

November 27, 2016

1-genesee-on-shumway-11-27-16<— Charlotte/Summerville – Early Sunday Morning – Genesee on Shumway before heading out to hunt.

2-beauty-and-dotca-on-kodak-tower-11-27-16<— Downtown – Beauty and Dot.ca on the Kodak Tower.

I found both Beauty and Dot.ca on the Kodak Tower today.  Beauty was on the south side arch ledge, above where the old Mariah and Kaver nest box used to be located.  Dot.ca was on the southeast corner of the playpen netting, just below her.  He was in hunt mode, stooping down the south face of the building, flushing and chasing the pigeons that were hiding on the Kodak letters ledge.  He did this quite a few times, but was not successful while I was there.  Beauty watched him from above.  🙂



After ending my downtown watch, I headed back to Seneca Towers (ST).  From Maplewood Park, I saw one falcon on the north end railing near the northwest corner.  It was too far for me to tell if it was Billie or Seth.

7-st-falcon-11-27-16<— Seneca Towers – Billie or Seth?

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Saturday Falcon Headcount – 11/19/16

Saturday, November 19th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher Carol P.

It was time to go out for my weekend falcon headcount and I was happy to have my friend and fellow Watcher Kathy O join me.  It was an absolutely gorgeous fall morning.  Here’s what we saw.

Downtown, we found both Beauty and Dot.ca together on the Frontier Communication Tower’s northeast box.  They do so enjoy each others company.  🙂


The roof of the nearby church was covered in pigeons.


Our next stop was the Brighton Site (BS) where we found our unbanded female in flight.  This was a first for both of us.  She’s usually settled on one of the window ledges on the east side of the building, sleeping.  We enjoyed watching her fly over the building for a few moments before she headed south..  We waited for awhile, but she did not return.



We did check Medley Center, and found no falcons there.  I checked the area carefully for any evidence of falcons being there recently, but found nothing.

At Seneca Towers, the only thing we saw was a Coopers Hawk flying high above the gorge.  We lost site of it when it stooped behind the building.


Kathy ended her watch here and I continued on to the Charlotte/Summerville area.  Genesee was home on top of the Shumway antenna/tower.


I was joined by Dana and Lou.  Genesee was hyper-aware of his surroundings, watching everything that passed by.  After about a 1/2 hour, he took off heading northwest.  We followed, and Dana spotted him chasing off a Red-tailed Hawk. Before ending my watch, I checked out the area one more time and found G on top of the Coast Guard Tower (CGT).  I texted it out so that Dana and Lou were able to find him.  It was time to head home.  🙂

Morning Watch 11-19-16

Saturday, November 19th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was a warm sunny morning by mid November standards with a busy breeze and a temperature of  42 (F) 6 (C)

Click on the pics to see the full version

I started my watch about 20 minutes before the sun came up and didn’t see any falcons at Seneca Towers (ST) when I left. On my way downtown, I spotted a falcon on the ring behind the dilapidated nest box at the closed Kodak Hawkeye plant. I didn’t see any bands on either leg.

img_0005-hawkeye-falcon img_0006-falcon-at-hawkeye img_0011-who-dat img_0012-no-leg-bands

I left after a few minutes and as I was checking the statue of Mercury I found a few starlings hanging out on it while there were no falcons around. My second check of the Frontier Communications tower (FCT) bagged me the Beautyful one on the northeast cube with a full crop.

img_0015-starlings-on-mercury img_0020-beauty img_0021-hi-beautyful img_0025-beauty

A few minutes later Dot.ca (DC) flew in from the east and landed on a support beam to the northeast cube.

img_0030-here-i-am-sweety img_0034-dc-arrives

Soon after, DC made his way over to his mate and perched right next to Beauty. What a lovely pair they have become!

img_0036-dc-making-his-way-over img_0038-just-gonna-catch-a-few-winks

Beauty was napping on and off as her breakfast digested and DC kept an eye on their surroundings while doing some preening in between.

img_0049-dc img_0052-dc img_0059-dc

I left them to do their thing as it seemed they were settled in for a while.


I checked ST in passing on my way to Charlotte but again nobody was home. I had to wonder if the unbanded bird I saw at Hawkeye may have been the reason I didn’t see them-perhaps they were escorting it out of their territory. Anyway, I found Genesee on the Coast Guard antenna eating when I arrived in Charlotte. The sun was behind him causing some not so good pics so I headed over to Summerville on the other side of the river.


Once there, I parked in the Silk OLoughlins bar parking lot where I was much closer to Genesee and the lighting was perfect.

img_0074-genesee img_0075-i-see-you img_0076-genesee

Genesee finished up with his meal shortly after I got there and then started working his way across to the opposite corner from where he started. He was feaking (wiping his beak) the whole way and stopped half way through to poop before starting to pick at his talons. Can’t be leaving any tidbits behind after all!

img_0084-pooparozzi-on-duty img_0087-i-got-my-eye-on-you-mak img_0092-hi img_0093-high-five img_0094-byf

On the move again and after a slip he made it to the corner. There was more feaking and cleaning up after his messy breakfast-he also had a bit of blood on his full crop.

img_0097-gleam-in-his-eye img_0098-walking-a-tight-rope img_0101-aww img_0112-id-as-genesee img_0117-stop-in-the-name-of-love

Right around 9am Genesee took wing and flew north over the lake and out of view.

time-to-go b-bye-genesee

I ended my watch at 9:15am after checking all of Seneca Towers with no luck finding Billie or Seth. It was fun sharing space with Genesee up close and personal, thus putting a smile on this watcher’s face! 🙂

Click on the links below to see today’s videos




Sunday Falcon Headcount – 11/13/16

Monday, November 14th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher Carol P.

Just a quick report from this weekend’s headcount.

Genesee at Charlotte/Summerville.


Beauty and Dot.ca, Downtown Rochester.

11-dc-in-ocsr-elevator-shaft-11-13-16<— Dot.ca in the OCSR Elevator Shaft.

12-beauty-on-ocsr-11-13-16<— Beauty on the south side of OCSR.

The unbanded female at the Brighton Site.


I was not able to find Billie and Seth at Seneca Towers, but they were seen by other watchers.

I’d like to end with some pictures of Genesee’s world.  We are so enjoying keeping an eye on him in the Charlotte/Summerville area.




Morning Falcon Watch 11-12-16

Saturday, November 12th, 2016

By Falcon Watcher MAK

It was partly sunny and brisk with a temperature of  31 (F) 1 (C) and a bit of a breeze

Make sure to click on pics to see the full version

I started my watch at Seneca Towers (ST) just before the sun came up with no falcon sightings at that time. When I arrived downtown I found Beauty on the top I-beam southeast side of OCSR. Dot.ca (DC) showed up shortly after and landed close to the south corner.

img_0003-beauty img_0004-beauty img_0010-bdc img_0008-dc img_0014-dc

The Beautyful one was looking around and trying to extract a pellet off and on and she was successful as can be seen in the snippet video. DC had his back to me and was doing a bit of preening.

img_0019-b img_0023-b-bringing-up-a-pellet<Beauty DC>img_0024-dc

I left them to warm up in the sun and hang out together, just the way we like to see them. On my way to Charlotte to see Genesee I stopped at ST and found both Billie and Seth sharing a meal together. When I first arrived at the Northridge Church parking lot she was plucking feathers and he was eating. There’s no way to know that they were eating from the same prey or if it may have been cached food but happily they both had food to eat on a chilly morning.

img_0030-billie-and-seth<Clickimg_0037-billie<Billie Seth>img_0039-seth

They both finished eating before I left them and just before I left Dana tweeted that KathyO had joined her as Genesee left the Shumway antenna.


I joined them but Genesee never returned so we said our goodbyes and I left to check along the lakeshore. I found a Great Blue Heron in Buck Pond fishing for his breakfast.

img_0044-gbh img_0047-gbh

I drove as far as the west end of Cranberry Pond then made my way back to Charlotte and also checked the Summerville side of the river with no luck. I took a few pics during my travels.

img_0050-lake-ontario-in-backgroundLighthouse along the Lake Ontario shore

img_0053-on-pelicans-nest-roofWeathervane on Pelican’s Nest  roof

img_0054-stainglass-on-port-of-rochesterStained glass window on Port of Rochester img_0055-pefa-food-on-roof<Click

When I was in a parking lot just south of the coast guard in Summerville I came across a deceased gull which had been decapitated with its head a few feet away from the body. I thought that perhaps it was a kill from a Peregrine as they take the heads off from their prey. Next I went to Turning Point Park and took a few pics of the foliage and then a pic of the O’Rourke bridge that spans the Genesee River and connects Charlotte to Summerville.

img_0056-from-turning-point-park img_0057-from-turning-point-park img_0059-an-autumn-walk

img_0058-last-of-the-colors img_0060-nice img_0061-connects-summerville-with-charlotte

As I was making my way home I got a tweet from Dana saying she was watching an unbanded adult Peregrine Falcon eating on a pole on North Greece Rd. so I turned around and headed that way. As I was driving on the Lake Ontario State Parkway I spotted some Cormorants in a tree by Long Pond. I stopped to check them out as I like this species of water bird with their big black feet.

img_0062-cormorants-on-parkway-tree img_0063-cormorant img_0064-cormorant

I made it just in time to see the falcon Dana had reported on a pole. It was done eating and had a fairly full crop as I pulled over to observe it. I got only a few pics before it scratched its head, roused and then flew off heading southwest out of view.

img_0065-unbanded-pefa img_0066-unbanded-pefa img_0068-pefa

img_0069-no-bands img_0070-rousing img_0071-taking-off

I ended my watch at 10:30am after a nice morning with my fine feathered friends that left me smiling! 🙂

Click on the links below to see today’s videos




Sunday Falcon Watch Report – 11/6/16

Sunday, November 6th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher Carol P.

It was a beautiful fall day here in Rochester, NY.  Crisp temps in the 40’s, but the sun was bright making it seem warmer than it really was.

I started my watch at Charlotte, where I met Dana.  We had no luck finding Genesee today.  Hopefully he was just out on a day trip somewhere and will return soon.

Here are a few pics I took of Genesee from yesterday.  He was enjoying breakfast on the Shumway tower.



After leaving Charlotte this morning, I headed towards Seneca Towers to check on Billie and Seth.  From my vantage point at Maplewood Park, I could see both were home.  Billie was eating on top of the building at the north end and Seth was nearby on the west side railing.  I was too far away to positively ID them.


My next stop was downtown Rochester.  I quickly found both Beauty and Dot.ca on the Widow’s Walk (WW) bldg, which is located behind the Times Square Bldg.

2-dc-beauty-on-ww-11-6-163-dc-on-ww-11-6-164-beauty-on-ww-11-6-16–> Pic 1 Beauty and Dot.ca; Pic 2 Dot.ca; Pic 3 Beauty

They both took off, but returned to the Widow’s Walk a few moments later.

5-dc-on-ww-11-6-16<— Dot.ca on WW.

6-beauty-on-ww-11-6-16<– Beauty on WW

7-bdc-on-ww-11-6-16<– Dot.ca (Front) & Beauty (Back) on WW.

Dot.ca took off and landed on the back of the Times Square Bldg.


Dot.ca retrieved a cache of food and flew with it heading north.  A few moments later, Beauty followed.  I found both of them on the Frontier Communication Tower (FCT).  Dot.ca was on top of the large white drum eating his meal and Beauty was neaby on the southwest box.

10-bdc-on-fct-11-6-1611-dc-on-fct-11-6-1612-beauty-on-fct-11-6-16<– Pic 1 Beauty and Dot.ca on FCT; Pic 2 Dot.ca with food on large white drum; Pic 3 Beauty on SW box.

It was time for me to move on.  My next check was at the Brighton Site (BS) location.  I had no luck finding the unbanded female we have seen hanging out there.

I checked downtown on my way back through and found both Beauty and Dot.ca together on the southwest box.  These two have become quite the pair.


Continuing on, I noticed that the last of the buildings at the Beebee Station (old RG&E) were now gone.  There is an unobstructed view to the other side of the gorge now.  I have such wonderful memories of our falcons on the buildings and stacks that used to exist there.

16-no-more-beebee-station-11-6-16<— Looking across the gorge, now that the Beebee Station is gone.

There is one remaining smokestack that still stands just north of where the Beebee Station used to be.  There were two Red-tailed Hawks on top of it, side-by-side.  Probably mom and dad of the young Red-tails we saw flying in the gorge during the summer.


Before heading home, I stopped at Charlotte for one last look for Genesee.  Again I had no luck finding him.  But I did find the juvie Coopers Hawk on the hunt.


The fall colors have been outstandingly beautiful this year.  Here are a few that I’ve seen during my travels this weekend.



Morning Falcon Watch 11-5-16

Saturday, November 5th, 2016

By Rochester Falcon Watcher MAK

It was overcast and a bit breezy with a temperature of  49 (F) 9 (C)

I started my watch at Seneca Towers (ST) before sunrise. I took a few pics of the foliage surrounding ST yesterday-lots of yellow as we are a bit past peak with our colors. There were a bunch of gulls floating on a log down in the Genesee River.

Make sure to click on pics to see the full version

seth-green-park-and-west-side img_0003-gulls-on-west-side-of-river img_0004-floating-down-the-river img_0005-north

I drove down to the north end of the parking lot and found who I believe was Billie on the east end of the top window ledge. It was still somewhat dark out so the photo quality is not too good.

img_0003-001-billie img_0007-billie

I left for downtown after a few minutes and found both Beauty and Dot.ca (DC) on the top I-beam south side of OCSR. He was near the south corner and she was 9 windows over to his right. I shared space with them from Graves St. and then I went over to the Radisson Hotel by Main St. They were both preening and looking around for breakfast to present itself. The Beautyful one gave me a shot at a nice fantail shot while DC stuck his neck out.

img_0009-bdc img_0012-beauty img_0014-dc-sticking-his-neck-out

I taped them while on Graves St. and caught a rouse by Beauty that shook out a sizable dust cloud from her feathers. I think she ought to take a bath! lol Beauty was pulling out lots of white down feathers as she should be nearing the end of her molt and DC was busy looking for prey birds.

img_0015-dc img_0019-beauty img_0027-dc img_0021-beauty

At 8:19am Beauty took off to the northeast, followed by DC who went into a stoop over the river and then they disappeared behind the Radisson Hotel. A few seconds later they came back into view flying over toward Times Square and then headed north past the Wilder building as DC again went into a stoop before leaving my field of vision.

img_0032-beauty-takes-off<Beauty taking off

I searched the entire downtown area but couldn’t find either one of them again so I left for Charlotte where Dana had reported seeing Genesee on the Coast Guard antenna. On my way through I checked ST from the Northridge Church parking lot and found Billie on the other end of the top north window ledge from where she had been earlier.


I decided to go to Summerville first where I could be up close and personal with Genesee-first from Silk OLoughton’s bar lot and then to the parking lot on the other side of the chain link fence. I was taping Genesee and when I started scanning the surroundings he took off.


Dana reported that she missed Genesee taking off as well. I left to join her on the Charlotte side of the river and then Carol reported that Genesee was back on the Coast Guard antenna. On the way I came across a decorative lighthouse and some pretty purple flowers in the Charlotte side parking lot.

img_0040-love-lighthouses img_0041-parking-lot-in-charlotte

Genesee soon took off and ended up on the Shumway Marine antenna. The 3 of us met up in the parking lot across the river from it. He was in hunt mode for sure as he looked every which way. A bunch of Mallard ducks swam by and I couldn’t help but notice some pretty foliage behind us.

img_0046-genesee img_0052-genesee img_0057-genesee-looking-for-breakfast img_0055-male-and-female-mallard-ducks img_0059-charlotte-colors

Master Genesee returned to the antenna with breakfast-a mourning dove.

go-get-it take-off img_0060-genesee-has-breakfast img_0061-you-lookin-at-me

He seemed to not like his footing or something so he flew off with it only to return after circling above the river. Genesee resumed preparing his breakfast as the feathers were flying to the north in the breeze. He seemed to lose his footing and soon after hopped to the other side of the antenna.

img_0062-genesee-with-mourning-dove img_0070-oops img_0072-feather-face

I had to get going at this point-I left Carol and Dana to watch him eat his meal. It was good to see them. I stopped on my way home to take pics of a couple more pretty trees along the way. I ended my watch around 10am with a smile! 🙂

img_0074-purty img_0075-lovely img_0076-love-it

Click on the links below to see today’s videos. I apologize for the shakiness as my hands are not very steady these days!





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