May
02
2006

Athena's eggs have all hatched!

UPDATE - Wednesday, June 14th

One of the falcon chicks spent part of the day learning to fly. The others are doing a lot of looking and wing-flapping, and will be joining their nestmate soon.

Peregrine chicks: Photo taken by the High Bridge web cam between 8 and 9 am, Friday, June 9.
Peregrine chicks: Photo taken by the High Bridge web cam between 8 and 9 am, Friday, June 9.

UPDATE - Friday., June 9th

The little fluffballs are gaining feathers fast and looking more like adult peregrines every day. They've been flapping their wings and looking over the edge a lot. We expect them to fledge--leave the nest--sometime before June 16. See today's comment for more information.


All four chicks have hatched!: Yeah! Four hungry mouths to feed.

UPDATE - Friday., May 5th

All four of Athena's chicks have hatched now! Congratulations to Athena and her new Peregrine Falcon family. As far as we can tell from the pictures the fourth egg must have hatched around 5pm yesterday, Thur. May 4th.


One more to go: Athena seems to look straight at the camera and we have only one more egg to hatch.Courtesy Excel energy

UPDATE - Thu., May 4th

Three of Athena's chicks have hatched and you can see them crowding around the one brown egg that hasn't hatched yet.


Three mouths to feed: One of Athena's chicks raises its mouth for food, Thur. morning.

Wed., May 3rd

Athena can be seen feeding two of her chicks on Xcel's Falcon Cam. You can keep updated by watching the new pictures appear every couple minutes in the daily photos section.


Athena feeding her chicks: Check out Athena droping food into her little chicks' mouths. So cute!

Update from atop the giant smokestack at the High Bridge power plant here in Saint Paul and down the street from the Science Museum:

"Athena's" eggs have started to hatch.


Falcon chicks being fed: In this picture you can see Athena picking off fresh meat for her chicks.

Athena, the resident falcon at the High Bridge nest box, laid her first eggs of the year starting on March 24th. We can't get a great picture of the chicks since she is covering them pretty closely right now, but we should be able to get a close-up in the coming days.


Protective Mom: Athena's little chicks have hatched but she is covering them for protection in this picture.


Waiting: Athena on her eggs Tue., May 2nd, morning.

Help us name the chicks!

We are taking a poll and will use the most popular names for Athena's little chicks. Vote for your favorite falcon name.

You can also track the falcon live over at the Xcel Energy Falcon Cam. Athena is in the bottom left hand corner (High Bridge).

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Liza's picture
Liza says:

Read more about the 2006 season.

Or find out about last year's drama and the history of the Peregrine falcon nest box project.

What's in store for the falcons in the coming years? Only time will tell. Xcel Energy will demolish the coal-fired High Bridge plant when the soon-to-be-constructed natural gas power plant comes on-line in 2008.

posted on Tue, 05/02/2006 - 12:37pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

Time for the cigars! Two baby falcons have hatched at the High Bridge! We're waiting for 2 more...

posted on Tue, 05/02/2006 - 2:23pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

Way cool pictures of Athena's eggs hatching...

posted on Tue, 05/30/2006 - 1:46pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

wow!!!!!! the babies are being fed on the 4-5 pm cam shot. So awsome

posted on Tue, 05/02/2006 - 5:20pm
bryan kennedy's picture

I just uploaded some new pics of Athena feeding her chicks above.

posted on Wed, 05/03/2006 - 10:21am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

That is so sweet they are so cute and it is like amazing how they do that. It is the miracle of life. How did you get these photos anyway?\r\n

posted on Wed, 05/03/2006 - 11:00am
bryan kennedy's picture

The camera is attached to a pole that extends out and over the nest which sits way up near the top of the smokestack at the High Bridge Energy plant. It takes pictures automatically.

posted on Wed, 05/03/2006 - 1:07pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Hi i'm Lydia and I was really interested in what you wrote bye

posted on Wed, 05/03/2006 - 12:27pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:
Oh! In the photos taken between 1:00 and 2:00 this afternoon, we can see that Athena is now the proud mama of three little fluffballs. One more to go...
posted on Wed, 05/03/2006 - 2:04pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I relly like that you are doing this

posted on Thu, 05/04/2006 - 9:46am
bryan kennedy's picture

All of Athena's chicks have now hatched. Check the post above for some new pictures.

posted on Fri, 05/05/2006 - 2:32pm
River Gallery Staff's picture
River Gallery Staff says:

Athena and her mate are feeding the 4 chicks many times a day now. They will be growing rapidly in the next weeks. We would expect them to leave the nest sometime around mid-June. That first flight from the nest will be something to see!

posted on Sun, 05/07/2006 - 5:24pm
tae tae's picture
tae tae says:

dude kewl

posted on Mon, 05/08/2006 - 10:49am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

their so cute

posted on Tue, 05/16/2006 - 11:02am
Liza's picture
Liza says:

The new chicks were banded on Friday, May 26.
See some pictures.

Visitors to the Science Museum got to name one of the chicks. The most popular choice was "Santa's Little Helper," but falcon names have to be 11 characters or fewer. So the museum's 2006 falcon, a female, is STARSHADOW.

posted on Tue, 05/30/2006 - 1:44pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

According to the Associated Press via National Public Radio, a Minnesota peregrine falcon is facing relocation.

Here's the story:

"Wildlife officials are planning to relocate an aggressive peregrine falcon that's attacking pedestrians on a bridge in central Minnesota.

The mother falcon is raising her young about a block from a Mississippi River bridge in Sartell. The falcon has nearly hit several people, and in once case scratched the head of someone trying to cross the bridge.

Pat Redig with the University of Minnesota's raptor center says he's been given the go ahead by local officials to move the falcon's nest to another location.

'It's one of these things that we have to do as we try to bring people and wildlife together in close proximity, and this is one of the outcomes that can occur. We have to respond to the situation and we just can't not let it go,' Redig said.

Redig says he'll have to separate the falcon and her young in order to calm her down. He says peregrine falcons are usually very tolerant of people, but this one seems particularly aggressive."

posted on Tue, 06/06/2006 - 12:08pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

I heard on the news yesterday that there was a lot of public outcry. For now, local officials have posted signs on both ends of the bridge warning pedestrians to look out, and the peregrine is staying put.

posted on Fri, 06/09/2006 - 10:54am
Liza's picture
Liza says:

Wow. Those little fluffballs are gaining feathers fast and looking more like adult peregrines every day. They've been flapping their wings and looking over the edge a lot. We expect them to fledge--leave the nest--sometime before June 16. They'll stay with their parents for about two months afterward, learning to hunt. First, the parents will find prey and the young learn to snatch it from them in mid-air. When the babies get good at that, they'll start learning to hunt on their own.

Peregrine chicks: Photo taken by the High Bridge web cam between 8 and 9 am, Friday, June 9.
Peregrine chicks: Photo taken by the High Bridge web cam between 8 and 9 am, Friday, June 9.

Here's the sobering truth, though:
On average, only two juveniles sucessfully fledge per nest. And the first year is dangerous. But if a peregrine survives its first year, its chances of survival are pretty good. Some birds have lived to be 18 or 20, but those probably aren't typical examples. An average lifespan is probably somewhere between 2 and 8 years.

posted on Fri, 06/09/2006 - 10:46am
Liza's picture
Liza says:

One of our four has been hanging out on TOP of the nest box all day. Wonder if he/she can't figure out how to get down? They'll be leaving the nest, learning how to hunt and fly on their own, any day now.

2006 peregrine chicks: Looks like they're all washed up and waiting for dinner. (The photo was taken by the High Bridge web cam yesterday evening, before our little wanderer went exploring...)
2006 peregrine chicks: Looks like they're all washed up and waiting for dinner. (The photo was taken by the High Bridge web cam yesterday evening, before our little wanderer went exploring...)Courtesy Excel energy

posted on Tue, 06/13/2006 - 4:07pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

One of our falcons spent part of today learning to fly. The others are doing a lot of looking and wing flapping, and they'll be joining their nestmate soon.

posted on Wed, 06/14/2006 - 3:29pm
John Ingmanson's picture
John Ingmanson says:

The falcons are so pretty

posted on Fri, 06/23/2006 - 3:19pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

i really like your study

posted on Sun, 07/16/2006 - 2:38pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

I need some advice on how to raise a baby goose.I found this goose egg by my pond right after it was layed & abandoned by it's mother.How do I raise this goose when it has hatched?! I'm only 10 yrs old!

posted on Thu, 04/26/2007 - 2:03pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

Repost your comment on the thread called "The chicken and the egg."
A poultry expert from the University of Minnesota regularly checks those posts and will be able to give you advice.

posted on Thu, 05/03/2007 - 8:51pm
Linda's picture
Linda says:

My daughter recently found an abandoned goose egg too. We are wondering if it is even a viable egg and think it probably isn't. Any info would be helpful! She's only 10 years old too:)

posted on Thu, 05/03/2007 - 8:37pm
Liza's picture
Liza says:

See the answer to the post directly above yours.

posted on Thu, 05/03/2007 - 8:53pm

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <h3> <h4> <em> <i> <strong> <b> <span> <ul> <ol> <li> <blockquote> <object> <embed> <param> <sub> <sup>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • You may embed videos from the following providers vimeo, youtube. Just add the video URL to your textarea in the place where you would like the video to appear, i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pw0jmvdh.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Images can be added to this post.

More information about formatting options