by LIZ TOTH
The chicks are hatching! The female falcon was very active yesterday and the first chick was visible mid-day today. Chicks have a sharp egg tooth on the top of their beak which will disappear shortly after hatching. Pipping is when the chick starts to break through the egg’s shell. One or two days after pipping the chick begins moving around in the shell. The egg tooth on the beak begins scraping the shell as the chick moves. This scraping removes part of the shell and the chick emerges.
Early in the season we had suspected Daniel may have a new mate named Belle. The female at the nest displayed different behaviors than Dayton had in the past so we suspected she may be new. Belle was spotted in January in Deeds Park and is a banded female from Kentucky. After watching the Falcon Cam it seems that the current female is unbanded so we will continue to call her “Dayton”. It could be the same female as in past seasons but without bands it is impossible to know her true identity.
Liz Toth is Associate Curator of Live Animals at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.