I must apologize to all of her fans for my neglect of Island Girl this season.
I can almost hear people saying, "Hey! What about Island Girl you guys!"
In my defense, tracking a tagged bird, in this case Felipe, is really intensive and far more time-consuming than I had previously thought or realized. We are going all of the time and often just don't have much extra time available to write more.
Anyway, here are several things I'd like to comment on with this most remarkable bird.
First off, we were all ecstatic to learn that her transmitter is still functioning. This is her fourth season and we never thought it would last so long. Not certain but I think this is a record for a GPS solar PTT on a peregrine. Maybe someone can correct me if this is not accurate, but a fourth season is pretty rare.
What a great opportunity to compare her migration behavior over time and see how it varies. Pretty unique.
And to have her leave Putu on the exact same day as Felipe allows us to directly compare their migration behavior as they are traveling in parallel up the coast at this stage. Remarkable in itself.
Personally, I liked that she apparently took off just after I had her stooping a pigeon on the beach at Putu.
This year, she is electing to fly up the coastal route and not inland. She seems to be staying close to the ocean and roosting on the sweeping cliifs above the coastal terrace. These are dominatng positions and superb hunting perches as well.
I am still of the opinion that peregrines selecting new and varied migration routes develop both new hunting skills and more experience under in a wider variety of habitats with a broader variety of prey. Seems to me that will increase their overall fitness with time. These deep migrant tundra peregines are masters at this behavior.
If only I had been able to catch her again and attach the other VHF transmitter! Rats.
I see that last night, her signal showed that she was located off the coast, well out over the ocean, around 10 PM. Does this mean that she was flying around out there hunting nocturnal birds? If so, this would be significant. Nocturnal hunting in a migrant peregrine might answer some questions we have.
Late here. More later.
And finally, let me repeat here the quote that several of you have written to me in the past.....
Go Island Girl!