20120531 Banding

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Peregrine Falcon Banding, May 31, 2012, at the Sheraton Hamilton Hotel.

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The three chicks are collected from their nest, atop an 18th floor window ledge on the Sheraton Hamilton Hotel, vigorously guarded by the adults.....

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The chicks are brought down to the 17th floor in a special carrying case.

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The first chick, Beckett, is placed in a bucket for weighing....

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Beckett weighs in at 682 grams. Male chicks generally range between 600-800 grams, while females are always larger, often in the 900s, so the weight allows the banders to determine gender.

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Giving Beckett a light squirt of water keeps his throat moist if he squawks too much, and also gives the bander a chance to check the throat for any sign of infection when the chick opens its mouth.

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All the chicks are banded with a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service silver coloured metal number band, which are used throughout all of North America. Falcons know no borders!

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The printing on the silver band is very small, so to help identify the birds at a distance a black band with large numbers/letters is attached to the other leg. Beckett is banded with 86 over Y. The metal band is also wrapped in colour-coded tape which will fall off in a few months. Beckett's tape is green. All the chicks were named for Hamilton waterfalls. Beckett Falls are on the escarpment just west of St. Joseph's Hospital.

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Now it is the second chick's turn to be weighed.....

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671 grams. Another boy! He receives the name "Felker". Felker's Falls are in the east end of the city.

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Felker gets a drink, and his throat is checked. All the chicks were free of infection.

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Felker gets his silver band, which was then wrapped in yellow tape.

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The USFWS bands are made of aluminum, easily closed with a pair of pliers.

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The large number bands (Felker's reads 87 over Y) are plastic, and secured with pop-rivets using the large tool seen here.

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Felker goes back into the carrying case.

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The third chick weighs-in at 646 grams. A third boy! A very rare event in Hamilton. This chick is named "Tiffany" after Tiffany Falls, which were in turn named after Dr. John Tiffany, the first doctor in Ancaster.

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Tiffany gets his silver USFWS band.

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Tiffany's metal band was wrapped with red tape. A few days after banding, Tiffany pulled it off!

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Tiffany's large number band is 88 over Y, as can be seen in the photo.

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The three chicks pose for photos. On the left is Peter Tosh, Manager of the Sheraton Hamilton. In the centre is Adam Boudens of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. Emma Ditchburn, one of our two 2012 FalconWatch Coordinators, is on the right.

Still Images captured from the Banding Video recorded by Charles Gregory, and the HCPP webcam archives. (C) Copyright the Hamilton Community Peregrine Project.
Photo album generated by album generator a free tool by Dave Sun Jun 10 12:00:31 2012