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Archive for the ‘Journal’ Category

RFalconcam Makes City Newspaper’s ‘Annual Manual’

Thursday, March 17th, 2011

Every year Rochester’s City Newspaper publishes their Annual Manual, a guide that seeks to compile all that’s great about the Flower City into a single digest. This year, rather than go after the big attractions, they concentrated on aspects of life here that might not have the marquee value of the Eastman Theater or the Memorial Art Gallery, but nevertheless contribute in a big way to Rochester’s unique appeal.

We’re happy to announce that the Rochester Falconcam got some love in the Local Bloggers section. Writer Kate Antonides penned a nice summary of the Falconcam and our two blogs, Imprints and FalconWatch. Click the link above to read her article, then take a little time to explore the rest of the 2011 Annual Manual.

Archer’s Back In Rochester

Sunday, March 13th, 2011


Just in time for the wearin’ of the green!

Our happy excited watchers– Both online and in person in downtown Rochester– delivered the news everyone has been waiting to hear. It seems Archer decided that the city’s St Patrick’s Day parade was the perfect time to fly back home, but we didn’t get our first pictures of him and his identifying leg bands (not to mention that telltale white feather tip on his right wing) until shortly after 2PM.

MainCamera_20110313-075700He and Beauty wasted no time and got right down to the business at hand, renewing their pair bond through some ritual bowing and sharing of food. Watcher Carol P reported seeing two falcons eating on the Kodak tower yesterday morning. Since then, both have been showing up at the Times Square nest box. They were also observed flying together near the Times Square building. All of these are typical signs of courtship that we’d expect to see in a pair of peregrines getting ready for a new season.

You can join in the virtual falcon watch yourself with the Rochester Falconcam’s five cameras at Times Square. Catch all the action live on our streaming video page, or even take control of our famous PanCam for a personalized falcon watching experience!

What of the tiercel who’s been keeping Beauty company since the year began? Our local watchers dubbed him “Mr. T”. He paid a visit to the nest box as recently as Friday afternoon on the 11th. Our watchers will keep a close eye on things downtown, just in case Archer and the “new guy” decide to mix it up. There’s another Peregrine a few miles north of the Times Square at one of the buildings in Kodak Park. She’s been without a mate all year, so if Mr. T wants to head toward the lake he might find a willing partner there. That would be a win-win for Peregrines in Rochester.

Archer’s arrival comes about a week earlier than his 2010 debut in Rochester. That doesn’t necessarily mean anything, but it will be interesting to see how his arrival time compares from year to year– assuming he continues coming back. One thing you can be sure of, is that we’ll be keeping our eyes glued to the skies in Rochester now that Mariah and Kaver’s grandson is back in town!

Camera Control At Your Fingertips

Thursday, February 10th, 2011

With spring approaching it won’t be long before falcons are once again moving in and out of the nest box and hanging around the buildings surrounding Times Square. Today we’re introducing a new feature to the Rochester falconcam that we think you’re really going to enjoy. For a small donation via PayPal or credit/debit card, you can control the PanCam! Control is available in ten-minute blocks, up to a full 30 minutes at a time! We are asking only 50 cents per minute during our trial period. After that, the price will rise to $1.

By using PayPal or credit card, you will be able to take control of the camera in as little as 10 minutes after payment is made. No need to wait days or weeks for a check to clear. After your payment has been registered, you’ll be able to move Camera 1 to any of 21 preset positions and zoom out or in, magnifying the image by up to 21 times normal!

Here’s how it works…

1. After opening a new window in your internet browser, go to our website http://rfalconcam.com and select Control Camera from the CAMERAS tab. Another window will pop up that lets you either log in to take control of the camera or reserve a time to take control.

2. Since this will be your first visit, you will want to click on Reserve time on a camera.

3. When the reservation page is displayed, Click on the Book button.

4. Select a date, start time and end time. The start and end times must be 10, 20, or 30 minutes apart. The green spaces on the calendar are times that are available. Red spaces denote previously reserved slots.

5. Click the Continue button to go to the details page where you can review and modify your reservation. You will also see the total price for your reservation here.

6. Click Continue to go to the Customer Information page. Enter your name and contact information. Your Rfalconcam Forum username is optional, and you don’t need to be a forum member to participate.

7. Click on Continue to go to the confirmation page where you will confirm your reservation. Be sure to click on the Terms & Conditions check box!

8. Click on the Book button to confirm the reservation. Your confirmation code will be displayed. (It will also be emailed to you.) Don’t lose it! You will need it to gain access to the camera.

9. Click on the Pay Now button to pay for your reservation. The PayPal payment page will open in a new window.

10. Follow the directions on the PayPal page. You can pay using your PayPal account, or if you don’t have one, pay using a credit or debit card.

11. Close the PayPal window when you are done.

12. Close the Reserve Camera window.

You will receive a confirmation email which also contains instructions for controlling the camera. Do yourself a favor and READ THE INSTRUCTIONS NOW. They’ll be repeated when you take control of the camera, but by then you’ll be reading during your control time. If you want to avoid paying for the privilege of learning how to move the camera, take advantage of the instructions in the email.

A few minutes before your reservation time arrives:
1. Go to http://rfalconcam.com and select Streaming Video from the CAMERAS tab so you will be able to see where Camera 1 is currently pointed.

2. Select Control Camera from the CAMERAS tab.

3. This time, enter your email address and confirmation code, then click the Take Control button. The clock is ticking, and you’re in control!

4. If you didn’t read the instructions in the confirmation email that you received when you made your reservation, you’ll see them again here. They explain how to control the camera and what to expect. However, it is a good idea to read them in the email before you get to this point because you will be using time that could be spent controlling the camera.

5. When you are ready to control the camera, click on Take control of the camera now.

6. The control panel will appear, and now you can start moving and zooming the camera.

7. When your time is up, the control panel will close and you will be given the option to control the camera again or quit.

We hope you’ll enjoy this exciting new service. If you’ve ever wanted to see what it’s like to to follow a mobile falcon or fledgling in real time, this is your chance! And you can rest easy in the knowledge that all of the proceeds from your camera control time are going to support the Rochester Falconcam operations.

Quest at Kingston– In The Flesh!

Monday, January 24th, 2011

Quest Jan. 2011

Quest has continued to stay around Prince Edward Point with frequent trips into nearby Kingston Ontario this month. Recently our friends at the Canadian Peregrine Foundation posted about Quest visiting the Kingston Harbor on January 4. Happily CPF observer Rachel McRae was able to get some pictures of Quest. We’re reprinting them here with her kind permission.
Quest 1- Jan 4 - 2011 Quest 2

Quest 3 Quest 4
We’re working with the CPF to see if they have larger pictures they can share with us, and if we can get them we’ll bring them to you.

Quest is looking great, and both she and her transmitter seem to be going strong! CPF reporter Big Frank also let us know that workers at the Pickering Nuclear Power plant have been seeing Quest in the past few days, so she may be returning to familiar ground. Be sure to check back for updates.

Quest (Very) Happy At Prince Edward Point

Tuesday, January 4th, 2011

Quest Finishes December at PEP

Quest must be having a good time at Prince Edward Point because her transmitter data display some of the closest clustering that we’ve seen since we began tracking her in 2008. In fact, many of the locations over the past two weeks have been so close together that we thought she might have finally ditched her transmitter.

There are a few data points that are spread far enough apart to show us that she’s still moving around. But one thing we can say is that she’s not moving very far. Except for a trip to Kingston on the 26th, she’s moved only a couple of miles. It looks like Quest has found a cozy place to stay for the winter, and that she’s content enough not to wander. Unless she decides to make another significant move– back to Pickering or the Lennox power station for instance– we may be in for a boring winter.

Beauty & A Friend(?) Visit Times Square

Thursday, December 30th, 2010


Beauty stopped by the nest box at the Times Square building today, and she didn’t come alone. As you can see from the picture above, she was accompanied by a male falcon as well. The pair stayed for the better part of an hour before finally flying away.

Needless to say we were all excited to see a male back in the territory, but was this Archer? Some close-in surveillance with the newly upgraded PanCam revealed that the male had no leg bands. No leg bands = no Archer. Here’s a good shot of the unidentified male taken from our high resolution Main camera:

Clearly this tiercel has no ID bands on his legs. He and Beauty and seemed pretty content, even ee-chupping to each other a couple of times.

A little before 9AM the male ducked into the nest box, and that drew a rebuke from Beauty. She kacked at the male and he left as hastily as he’d entered. He stayed nearby for a few more minutes before eventually flying away to the south. Beauty followed after him, and that’s the last we saw of the visiting tiercel.

So who was this newcomer? Was he a “one hit wonder”, just passing through, or will we see him again? We’ll keep our eyes open, and you can catch all the action on Rfalconcam’s five cameras or as it happens on our streaming video page.

Quest Endures Arctic Blast at Prince Edward Point

Wednesday, December 15th, 2010

Quest December 7 - 15

No surprises for Quest. She’s been bouncing between Pickering and Prince Edward Point for the past several weeks, but the most recent few days’ locations have placed her squarely at PEP. The weather’s been pretty nasty and cold, with one of the lowest temperature sensor readings we’ve seen recorded on the 15th, a chilly 9.65°C. Hopefully Quest is finding someplace to stay out of the wind and keep herself warm.

Is This Quest’s Mate?

Monday, December 13th, 2010


Photo by Denis Gauthier

Our friends at the Canadian Peregrine Foundation sent us this image of a banded Peregrine that was spotted at Frenchman’s Bay, right next door to the Pickering power plant where Quest has been hanging out. The picture was taken by Denis Gauthier on the afternoon of September 12th and reproduced here with his kind permission. Quest’s tracking data from that day places her squarely at Pickering.

Big Frank, one of the CPF’s falcon watchers, worked with Mark and Marion Nash to see if they could identify this bird. An enlargement of the picture yielded an all black band with 33/Y ID. It turns out this guy isn’t far from home. He’s Kendal, a tiercel hatched in 2009 at Toronto’s King Street nest.

We haven’t heard of any repeat sightings of young Kendal, so there’s no way of knowing whether he’s still in the area or if indeed this is the male who’s been hanging out with Quest. But if it is, it’d be another wonderful Rochester-Toronto connection in the Peregrine world. In any case, he’s one good looking bird!

A huge note of thanks to Big Frank for letting us know about Kendal, and to Denis for his great pictures, a couple more of which we’ve included below.

Kendal's leg band is visible

Kendal's leg band is visible

Kendal, photo by Denis Gauthier

Kendal, photo by Denis Gauthier

And The Winner Is…

Tuesday, December 7th, 2010

Our search for a new logo has come to an end. The voting was close all the way through the contest, and it was a nail-biter right up to the final minutes. But after all the votes were counted, one design came out on top.

We want to thank everyone who took the time to review both of the design finalists and to cast a vote for your favorite. Now the Rochester Falconcam is happy to reveal our new logo!


You’ll be seeing the new logo on our website in the coming weeks, so stay tuned!

Time To Choose A New Rfalconcam Logo

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

Recently the Rfalconcam’s Merchandising team embarked on an effort to update the logo we use on our website. Our current logo features Kaver in a stylized egg. It has served us well since the Genesee Valley Audubon Society took over the falconcam from Kodak back in 2007. We know that many of our watchers are very fond of the logo, and we intend to retire it with all the honor it is due. A new logo will help us to update our look as we move into 2011 with new cameras and a new and improved web experience.

Several weeks ago we put out a call to graphic designers to submit their ideas for a new logo. Using the popular Crowdspring website to manage the process, we received over 100 submissions that literally covered the spectum of design, color and content. We want to thank all of the artists and designers for their very engaging submissions!

Whittling down the list of submissions was a difficult task. We listened to the feedback from the Rochester Falconcam community, and that feedback figured prominently in our deliberations. After much discussion and wrangling, the Merchandise Committee has settled on two logo designs.

A couple of notes about the logos… oftentimes the designers included sample banners or other graphical elements in their submissions to demonstrate how their logo might work. The submission on the right includes such a banner at the top. This banner is for illustration only; it’s not the banner that we’ll be using and it’s not part of the submission. When you’re evaluating the choices, please concentrate on the logo itself, not on backgrounds or other style elements that may also appear in the picture.

Also, you can get a larger image of the logo by hovering your mouse over the upper right corner of each one. When you see a little magnifying glass icon appear, click it to open a larger view of the image. If the image runs off the top of the screen just move your mouse onto it, then click and drag it to view the whole thing. Close the large image by clicking the “X” in the upper right corner.

Now we’d like your help to choose our new logo! Click the logo images above to go to Crowdspring’s website. There you can view both of the logo finalists. You can assign a rating to each one, ranging from one to five stars. You can also leave comments or feedback about the designs. We hope you’ll keep your comments constructive, as the designers clearly put a lot of time and effort into their submissions. We’ll keep the voting open through Sunday, December 5th. After that, we’ll reveal the winner of the voting and adopt that design as the new Rochester Falconcam logo. So head on over to Crowdspring and let us know what you think!

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