Mating Season Has Begun
Mating season is officially underway for the Richmond falcon pair. Tuesday, March 3 was an eventful day for them. We witnessed some copulation activity between the two atop the sign of a nearby building. A couple of hours later the male was observed developing a scrape in the nest box. A scrape is a shallow depression that Peregrine Falcons create in substrate to lay and incubate their eggs. The following day, March 4, the male and female were seen together at the nest box; the male worked on the scrape while the female looked on from the ledge. Again on March 5, the male stopped by the nest box to maintain the scrape, which is now quite visible near the front center of the box.
Although the male has been making these nesting preparations, it is ultimately the female who chooses the nesting site. The Richmond female’s recent visits to the next box indicate the possibility that she may once again choose this location. When can you expect to see egg-laying begin? In past years, this pair’s egg-laying commenced anywhere between March 10 – March 24.
Male falcon forming a scrape in the nest box.
Female (left) and male (right) together at the nest box site.