Observation Log 2009
abbreviations 
    GBB=Gauranty Bank building

    FNB=Frost Bank building
    CBB=Chase Bank building
    BBB=Broadway Bank Building
    BBQ=Bill Miller BBQ

Green text identifies significant observations


3/23/09
8:50AM  ARRIVAL!  Male Swainson’s glides from west to to east to intercept three vultures and one Red-shouldered Hawk circling south of GBB and CNB.  After gliding with those birds a few moments, the hawk drifted towards the south of FNB.  Then the hawk drew its wings in and extended its legs downward.  It dropped steeply in a rapid dive to within 50’ of one of its last year’s nest, leveled off and shot past, swooping up to perch in the bare branches of a tree 25 yards SW from that nest.  Those branches were three feet from another previous year’s hawk nest.  No sign of the mate.  The male remained there without moving until 12:01.
12:01  The male inched out two feet further on the limb and remained in place through 4:32PM and probably through the night as well.

3/24/09
Dark, cloudy, SE breeze.
No sign of any Swainson’s Hawks, presumably still resting.  Sun came out at 2:53 but still no hawk.
4:30PM  no sign of the hawk today

3/25/09
heavy clouds, mild temperature, SE breeze.
8:47 through 5:00PM  No hawks
5:00PM  Male gliding over the intersection of 410 and Nacagdoches.

3/26/09
Dark, misty, damp ground, 60 degrees
Big thunder and rainstorm 11:00AM to 1:30PM, then clearing.
No hawks seen all day at the nest area.
5:00PM  Male spotted at intersection of 410 and IH 35, about 2 miles east of nest area, hunting.

3/27/09
Heavy overcast, damp, 62 degrees
8:50AM-1_38PM  No hawks seen
1:39PM  FEMALE ARRIVES!  She soars to the center of the nest territory with feet dangling, plunges through the canopy, and does a snap roll as the male approaches from the 410-I35 intersection.
1:48PM  Female lands in the canopy just south of last year’s nest. Male is circling the perimeter of the breeding territory, currently on the north side of 410.
2:00PM through 3:30PM  No hawks visible.
3:32PM  Male zoomed up to the face of CBB for updrafts.
3:34PM  One adult hunting between CBB and Wells Fargo.
3:38PM  Both adults hunting and enjoying soaring between CBB and GBB.

3/30/09
Dense overcast morning, calm, 55 degrees
No hawks seen today, female probably resting from migration and male probably either perching nearby or back out at 410-I35 intersection.

3/31/09
Partly cloudy, very light east breeze, 60 degrees
9:43AM  Female floating at 70’ altitude 100 yards south of CBB, hunting.
11:46AM  One adult is soaring over last year’s nest at 60-100’ altitude.
12:41  One adult, probably the male is circling at 50 to 200’ altitude 100 yards south of CBB.

Nearly clear skies with a gentle breeze after lunch hour.
1:50PM  Both adults hunting between loop 410 and 300 yards south and between CBB and  Nacagdoches at 70 to 300’ altitude.

4/1/09
Heavy overcast, 45 degrees.
By lunch hour clouds have decreased to light overcast.
2:20PM  One adult at 200-300’ altitude, hunting between FNB and south of CBB and old nestsite.

4/2/09
Clear, windy with high NW wind, 60 degrees.
10:42AM  One adult swooping at 100-150’ altitude near FNB.
11:40AM  One adult struggling to hunt at canopy level 100 yards south of last year’s nest.
1:12PM  One adult swooping around canopy top level.  It is joined by the other adult who launches from a tree.  The two adults soar together for two minutes.  Then both come down and land in the canopy 75 yards south of last years nest.
3:07PM  One adult hunting west and south of GBB at 75-125’ altitude.

4/3/09
Clear, calm, 55 degrees.
9:02AM  One adult hunting at canopy level.  Since no breeze, soaring is interrupted by a lot of flapping.  This occurring 200 yards SW of last years nest.
3:04PM  One adult at 60’ altitude between CBB and GBB, spirals up to 120’, then drifts north over loop 410.
3:37PM  Male glides between CBB and GBB, heading north, hunting.
4:11PM  One adult, probably female circles over CBB.

4/6/09
Partly cloudy, north breeze, 48 degrees.
8:50AM  One adult between GBB and nest area at 70-120’ altitude.
10:05AM  Both adults loosely hunting together from CBB south at 60-90’ altitude.
11:00AM  Strong breeze from the north developing.
11:15AM  One adult hunting from CBB to FNB and up to 300 yards south of FNB at 70-150’ altitude in strong breeze.
12:48  One adult soaring against CBB while hunting.
12:57  One adult hunting 300 yards south of CBB.
3:30PM  Male hunting at 60-100’ altitude, 200 yards south of CBB

4/7/09
One adult perched on top of GBB, for the first time this season.
No further observations this day.

4/8/09
Clear sky, nearly calm, 60 degrees.
8:50AM  Both adults on GBB roof.  First time this season for both to be on the roof.
9:28AM-4:00PM no birds visible.
4:00PM  Female on GBB roof.
4:05PM  Female launches and  drifts towards FNB.  She is definitely missing 1 or 2 primaries on the left wing.

4/9/09
Dark and overcast
9:00-9:15AM  no birds
9:13AM  Both adults on GBB roof, perched within 12 inches.
10:15AM  Just the female remains on the roof, male off somewhere hunting.
10:16AM  Female launched and circled north towards Tesoro buildings.
10:23AM  Both adults are hunting together between CBB and GBB and up to 200 yards south of there.
11:13AM  Both adults soaring together in CBB updrafts.
11:46AM  Male launches from GBB and begins soaring and circling at 200’ altitude between GBB and old nest.
3:06PM  Female is soaring on updrafts of GBB, then drifts towards FNB.  She then appears to dive directly below a low landing Cessna approaching the E-W runway.
4:02PM  Male is hunting at canopy level 150 yards south of CBB.  Female is on GBB roof edge.

4/13/09
9:33AM  Both adults hunting at or just above canopy tops between CBB, GBB, and old nest.
11:07AM  Female is soaring at 250’ altitude(high) above GBB.
11:40AM  Both adults are playing tag with the GBB building corners and windows at about 6th floor level.  They do this several times each season, just gently touching the concrete or glass vertical sides with their feet as they circle closely.  They are always flying closely together, or at least within 20 feet of each other when they engage in this tag game.
11:42AM  Both adults landed on GBB and copulated immediately.  This is also part of the tag game.  Male left female’s back and drifted off west past CBB but immediately  returned to  GBB  and floated over female about 10’ above her.
11:44AM  Male remains floating over GBB while the female remains perched on the south edge. 
1:15PM  Female is soaring at 125’ past CBB.
2:11PM  The pair engage in tandem flying at 70’ altitude, slightly low for this activity, but otherwise pretty common for the early breeding season behavior.
3:45PM  More formation flying.
4:08PM  Both birds, sometimes together, sometimes separately circling GBB top floor and floating just above the roof.
4:15PM  Both adults landed in canopy within nest area, about 100’north of last year’s nest.
4:17PM  Both adults are back in the air and flapping over to GBB where they begin circling.

4/14/09
Clear sky, very gentle breeze, 50 degrees.
9:01AM  Both adults on GBB roof.
9:10-10:30AM  Birds pretty active moving around, soaring and flying amongst old nests.
10:30AM-4:30PM  Birds moving occasionally throughout the day but no formation flying.

4/15/09
8:43AM  Both adults circling Broadway Bank, female touching the corners in the tag game.
9:16AM  Both adults back circling GBB.  Male landed first.  When female landed 30 seconds later, the male hopped onto her, copulated, then launched and soared around GBB roof while female perched on roof edge.
9:31AM  Female still on GBB roof while male hunts at 80’ altitude 150 yards south of CBB.
12:33  Both adults on GBB.
1:06PM  Both adults soaring between CBB and GBB.
1:34PM  Both adults back on GBB roof edge.

4/16/09
Dark, heavy overcast, 62 degrees, streetlights are on.
8:49AM  One adult on GBB roof.9:52AM  Both adults circling upper floors and roof of GBB.
10:30AM  Loud thunder and drizzle.  Female is on GBB roof and male is floating above the roof and occasionally circling the upper floors.
10:33-11:51AM  Both adults perched on south edge of GBB during the drizzle.
1:20-2:53PM Both still perched there. Presumably pretty wet.
3:00PM  Drizzle ends but birds remain planted through 3:30PM
3:31PM  Both adults flapping together at 70' altitude 150 yards south of CBB hunting.
3:40-3:42PM  Both adults flap back to GBB roof, male with a mouse or baby bird.  Male hawk is pursued by a male grackle.  On landing male transfers the prey to the female.  She takes the prey, launches and  flies off to the canopy very close to last year’s nest and disappears in the foliage.  The male remains on GBB roof.
4:11PM  Male still on GBB roof.
4:13PM  Female left canopy, male launched from GBB and both soared to south face of CBB, for updrafts, then drifted north.
4:15PM  Male has caught another mouse-sized prey and is being followed by both a male and female grackle.  The hawk easily outdistances the grackles, flies north over loop 410 while eating the mouse or baby bird.  Female hawk is in the air above the male hawk.  Female returns to GBB roof edge.
4:17PM  Male hawk returns to GBB vicinity, still carrying most of the prey.  He swoops and dives in front of the female who is now perching on the south edge of the GBB.  He then lands about 4’ back from the edge and shares the prey with the female.  Male launches and floats over the GBB roof, then floats down to the female’s back and copulates.
4:22PM  Both adults left GBB while I was writing.
4:24PM  Both adults hang in the air for a minute or so, then while the male continues to float over GBB, the female circles GBB a half dozen times at top floor level, then rejoins the male floating 30’ above the roof.  They then swoop and dive.  Both birds circle GBB twice, then the female leads the pair in close formation flying with the male 30’ behind and slightly above towards Wells Fargo building.(Female always leads in formation flying and male is usually slightly above)
4:30PM  Both birds have doubled back and begun loose hunting together from 30-50’ altitude between GBB and FNB.
4:32PM  No success in their hunting effort this time., both circling GBB again, then back north of loop 410 for more hunting.
4:36PM  Female returns and lands on GBB roof edge.  Male arrives but circles instead then floats 30’ above the roof.
4:44PM  Female is still on GBB but male is now off riding updrafts against CBB, then he is off towards Wells Fargo.
4:46PM  Male returns with more prey!  A male and female pair of grackles pursue him.  Male flaps to GBB roof where he shares the prey with the female.
4/17/09
Dark, rain alternating with drizzle.  68 degrees, streetlights are on it is so dark.
9:30AM  Thunder and electricity interruption.
10:49AM  A break in the drizzle but still pretty dark and heavy overcast.  Both adult Swainson’s just flew over to GBB and circled the upper floors a few times in formation flight.  One adult landed on the roof and walked away from the edge.
10:52AM  Now that bird is back in the air and both are floating 20’ above the GBB roof.  The female leads the male around GBB then lands on the roof.  The male ands on the female and copulates, then lifts off and floats above the roof.  After a few moments he lands on the roof edge with the perched female.
11:20AM  Both are still on the roof, still dark and some streetlights on.
11:46AM  Heavy Rain.  Both adults still on the roof and in view.
12:31  Rain varying from heavy to light.  One adult visible on the roof, other presumed just out of sight on the roof but away from the edge.
1:08PM  Both adults on GBB roof.
1:49PM  Not as dark, streetlights are off but still heavy overcast.  Rain has just stopped.  Both adults still on the roof.
2:42PM  Male launches and is floating over GBB while female remains perched.
3:10PM  Male comes back from hunting and has prey.  Female launches and follows the male round and round GBB.  She touches the sides of GBB on several passes.  The male proceeds to circle and float while eating the prey on the wing.  Female gives up and lands on GBB roof.
3:14PM  Male lands and finally shares what is left of the prey with the female on GBB roof.
4:25PM  Female is floating above GBB.  Now female leads male in tandem soaring around GBB, touching the building corners.
4:30PM  Female lands on GBB roof while male continues round and round, touching the glass sides this time instead of the concrete corners.  Then the male drops down on top of the female and copulates.

4/20/09
Clear, calm, 55 degrees
9:02-9:19AM  Female on GBB roof.
9:27AM  Male is soaring 200 yards south of CBB, glides east towards GBB, then banks and circles downward  towards last year’s nest, ;landing in the lower canopy out of sight near the old nest
9:33AM  Female is back on GBB roof edge.  Male now arrives and circles GBB once, then lands next to female.
9:39AM  Both adults out of sight.
9:42AM  One adult on GBB roof again, other appears gliding to the rooftop from the south with prey.  The bird with prey appears to be the female but lighting angle is poor so not positive.  The adult with prey lands on GBB roof a few feet back from the edge and shares the prey with it’s mate.
9:45AM  Male is now circling GBB roof, meaning the female must be left with most of the prey, still eating.
9:46AM  No birds visible.
10:27AM  Both adults on GBB roof.
10:40AM No birds visible again.
10:42AM  Female is perched on the GBB roof edge while the male circles the roof.
10:50AM  While the female remains perched, the male drifts off somewhere hunting to the north.
11:09AM  Male is perched on GBB roof  Female circles 100 yards south of GBB at 70-100’ altitude.  Female drifts towards last year’s nest and lands in a Live Oak next to the old nest.  She then moves to the tree containing the nest and drops down into the nest itself.  This marks the beginning of nesting behavior for this season.
11:15AMFemale launches from last year’s nest, lands in a Chinese Tallow tree next to Nacagdoches and the GBB parking lot.  She breaks off a one-quarter inch or one-half inch dead limb just over a foot long and returns to the 2008 nest with it.  This indicates she has chosen to fix the old nest up for this season’s nesting rather than one of the other old nests, or an entirely new nest.
11:20AM  Both adults on GBB.
11:39AM  No birds visible  Lost track of them while adjusting a spotting scope tripod but they are probably soaring together north of GBB.
11:43AM  Female appears and drops to the tallow tree, grabs a 14” dead limb about a quarter-inch in diameter and carries it to the chosen nest.
12:24  Both birds on GBB roof.
1:12PM  Female again goes to the nest and drops into it.  Her approach this morning has been to glide to it and just drop in vertically from above by relaxing her wings above her head.  There may be protruding limbs grown since the nest was first built early last season requiring the more complex entry.
1:40PM  Both adults on GBB roof but perched 20 feet apart.
1:56PM Adults have moved together on the roof edge.
1:58PM  Female launches, glides to the tallow tree, snatches a twig, and soars over to the nest, dropping into it from above.
1:59PM  Female launches from the nest and heads back to the tallow tree while male remains perched on GBB roof.
2:02-2:06PM  Female rummages about in the tallow tree, disturbing several White-winged doves.  At 2:06PM she leaves the tree with several small one-quarter to one eighth inch diameter twigs, a foot long or less and takes them to the nest.  Male is still on GBB roof.
2:08PM  Female flies from the nest towards FNB at low altitude, either hunting prey or hunting more sticks.  Male still on GBB roof.
2:17PM  Female is soaring and hunting at 90’ altitude between CBB and GBB.
2:30PM  Both adults now on GBB roof.
2:40PM  Both adults launch and go on a joint soaring tour around the local area.
3:00PM  Female is carrying another twig to the nest.
3:22AM  Male is on GBB roof.3:47PM  Both adults on GBB roof.
4:04PM  Both adults circling mid-level floors of the GBB playing tag and touching building corners.  Male then soars about 30’ above GBB, circles once and lands on the roof.  Female circles GBB several additional times then she lands on the roof.  Male hops onto female and copulates.

9/21/09
Clear, 55 degrees, gentle southerly breeze.
9:00-9:40AM  Both adults hunting, mostly singly and occasionally landing on GBB.
10:20AM  Male flew to nest while female waited on GBB.(not the other way around as yesterday)  I was looking through a camera viewfinder and could not tell if he was carrying nest material, but after about a minute he left the nest, flew back to the GBB roof and copulated with the perched female.  The male then floated over GBB about a minute, then began hunting around CBB  The female stayed on GBB roof.
10:30-11:00AM   The male hunted and went to and from the nest twice, also copulated twice with the female who is still on the GBB roof.
11:17AM  The male is soaring a little high, at 200-400’ altitude above CBB and GBB while the female is still on GBB.
11:20AM  Male descends and copulates with the female on GBB roof.  Both then perch together until 11:35.
11:35AM  The male launches and goes into a shallow dive and goes into the tallow tree behind the GBB parking lot on Nacagdoches where the female was gathering nest material yesterday.
11:45AM  The male leaves the tallow tree and goes to the nest.  Could not tell if he had nest material.
11:48AM  Male leaves the nest.  It apears the male has picked up the female's behavior pattern from yesterday.
12:27  Female on GBB roof.
1:01PM  No birds visible.
2:10-2:12PM  Female is sitting in the nest while the male is now perched on GBB roof, roles reversed again.  I think the nest refurbishing is finished and that both adults are mostly forming the nest cup or concavity.  They do a lot of squatting and turning around.
2:30PM  No birds visible.
2:40PM  Both adults appear and are soaring together.  They drift north over towards Tesoro bldgs.
3:20-4:40PM  No birds visible
4:40PM  Male appears from the north across loop 410 with large prey.  He drifts at 120’ until he is over the nest then drops vertically to the nest but lands close, not in the nest.  After a minute, he launches and flies to GBB with the prey, or what is left of it and there the female appears from the unseen portion of the roof.  He shares momentarily then takes off with the prey soaring back north with the remnants.
4:50-4:59PM  No birds visible. 
I took about 30 minutes of video today of the pair coming and going from the nest, tallow tree, and GBB roof.  I caught at least one of the verticval dives by the male down to the female on the roof.

4/22/09
Clear, south breeze, 60 degrees
8:50AM  Both adults circling BBB.
9:00AM  Both adults on GBB.
9:17AM  Female is moving around in the nest while the male is soaring above GBB.
9:19AM  Male launched and drifted north of loop 410 while female continues tinkering with the nest.
9:33AM  Male on GBB roof.  Female is circling GBB, then lands.  Male hops up on her and copulates.
9:35AM  Male takes off and soars north of loop 410 while the female stays on GBB roof.
9:37AM  Male is now soaring against CBB.  Breeze is picking up to 10mph.
10:13AM  Both adults are perched side by side on GBB roof edge.
11:04AM  One adult on GBB roof, other soaring against CBB for updrafts.
11:27AM  One adult at the nest, other adult not visible.
12:18  One adult on GBB roof.  Cannot tell if other is at the nest.
1:34PM  No birds visible.
1:40PM  One adult floating above GBB with prey.  It dove into the tallow tree across from the GBB back parking lot, spooking out a Blue Jay.  I assume it went in there to eat the prey out of the hot sun.
1:43PM  Other adult just appeared and landed on GBB roof.
2:16PM  Female perched on GBB roof, male soaring above GBB, rising to 250’ altitude.
2:20PM  Female on GBB roof with a Mockingbird for company.
2:49PM  No birds visible.
3:  PM  No further observations this day.

4/23/09
Partly cloudy, moderate breeze from the south, 65 degrees, overcast by 11:00AM.
8:55AM  One adult floating and circling over GBB.
9:00AM  Male is hunting at 80’ altitude between CBB and GBB.
9:13AM  Female just launched from GBB and soared off towards FNB.  Male not in sight.
9:42AM  Female is hunting at 60-90’ altitude between the nest and CBB.
9:43AM  Female circled back to GBB and is soaring above GBB on updrafts.  She then rose to 150-200’ altitude and drifted over the nest hunting.
9:50AM  Female is drifting to 200 yards south of CBB and descending to 100-130’ altitude, still hunting.  No birds at the nest.  Male is not currently visible.
9:59AM  Both adults landed on GBB roof.  Male immediately hopped on female and copulated.
10:00AM  Male launches and does a shallow dive from GBB roof to a nearby tallow tree behind GBB back parking lot.  He flaps around within the tree a minute emerging with a fist-full of 12 to 16 inch long twigs.  He then flaps over to the nest by a circuitous route to gain altitude for soaring instead of just flapping directly there.  Once at the nest, he drops in from six feet over the nest.
10:05AM  Female launches from GBB as male reaches the nest.
10:40AM  Male is at the nest.
10:45AM  Male at the nest just flew off, going north towards FNB at very low altitude, gaining altitude just before FNB, turns toward GBB gaining more altitude, circles GBB, then drifts north of loop 410.
10:49AM  Male returned and landed on GBB roof edge.
10:50AM  Male left GBB and soared  on updrafts at BBD, then drifted over to Tesoro.  No activity at the nest.
11:13AM  Female riding updrafts at CBB.
11:45AM  No birds visible.
12:43  Male on GBB roof.  No birds at the nest.  Male launched and floated above GBB about a minute then rose to 150’ altitude and began doing swoops and dives between GBB and nest.  After another minute the male returned to a position above GBB and floated there several more minutes.
12:50AM  No birds visible.
1:09PM  Male on GBB roof.
1:11PM  Male left GBB roof in a shallow dive to a spot on or near the ground 50 yards north of the nest.  Female is now at the nest.
1:13PM  Male flies from down near the ground up to the nest.  Female moves around in the nest.
1:15PM  Both adults leave the nest, fly between GBB and FNB and cross loop 410, then begin circling BBB.  Both float above BBB a minute before banking and drifting over to Tesoro bldg.
1:18PM  Both adults return to GBB.  Male lands on female’s back even before she is landed.  They copulate on GBB roof edge.
1:21PM  Male leaves female’s back without stepping down.  He floats 15 to 20 feet above GBB a few moments, then drifts to CBB for more updrafts, then glides out to the south of GBB at 80 to 120’ altitude hunting.  Female stays on GBB roof edge.
1:25PM  Male is back floating 30’ above GBB roof while the female still remains perched.
1:26PM  The male drifts back to CBB and floats above there awhile.
1:27PM  Male drops into an elm tree adjacent to CBB to grab something but leaves without prey, going north across loop 410.
2:21PM  Female on GBB roof, male is soaring at south side of CBB.
3:03PM  Male is on GBB roof.
3:18PM  Female appears from the north with small prey and lands on GBB as if to share prey with the male.  However after a moment she launches, still holding the prey and leads the male in formation flight around the upper floors of GBB.  They then circle BBB.  Female then descends to the ground near the base of the nest tree.  Male is no longer in sight.  This is possibly the instinct to bring prey to the nest, developing before there is anything to bring food to.

3:56PM  Female on GBB roof edge.3:57PM  Male appears, drops to the female, copulates, lifts off, glides to the nest vicinity at 100-120’ altitude, then swoops his way back through the sky to float above GBB.  He then drifts north across loop 410.  Meanwhile the female hangs out on GBB roof with a Mockingbird.
4:08PM  Both adults are in formation flight around upper floors of GBB.  Female leads, neither has prey.
4:18-430PM  Female on GBB roof, male hunting low at 50-80’ altitude between CBB and GBB.
4:30-4:40PM  Male is soaring against CBB for updrafts.  Female on GBB. 

4/24/09
Overcast, occasional sprinkles, south breeze, 65 degrees
8:48AM  Both adults on GBB roof.
8:50AM  Female still on GBB roof, male not visible
8:55AM  Female launched and joined the male who is circling GBB.  Male now floats above GBB.  Female joins him and they both drift off south going past nest area.  Both land in a tall open hackberry tree 150 yards SW of the nest.
9:00AM  Both adults fly to the nest.  One settles into the nest, other perches n the edge.
9:05AM  Male is hunting and soaring south of GBB, then over loop 410.  Female out of sight.
9:09AM  Male is back on GBB roof.  Don’t see the female.
9:12AM  Male left GBB roof, glided to the nest area, banked, and descended below canopy doing a fast glide NE towards FNB to about ground level, hunting.
9:14AM  No birds visible.
9:50AM  One adult in nest.  It is getting dark, some parking lot lights turning on.
9:55AM  Male just left the nest and flew off north between GBB and FNB, then soared north of loop 410.  Cannot tell if female is at the nest or elsewhere.
10:02AM  Male came back to GBB, circled once, floated above, then landed on the roof edge.
10:20AM  No birds visible.
10:30AM  One adult on the nest.
10:31AM  Other adult lands at the nest with a twig.  Both birds then leave the nest and fly off.
10:35AM  One adult is flapping at canopy level between the nest and FNB, hunting.
10:37AM  No birds visible.
10:46AM  Male on GBB roof.  Drizzle is past
10:48AM  Momentary sunshine.  Male is above GBB, swooping and diving.
11:08AM  Female on GBB roof edge.  Male is floating and soaring above GBB.  He then soars off north of loop 410.
11:18AM  Both adults on GBB roof edge.
11:45AM  One adult on GBB roof.
1:06PM  Both adults at the nest.  Male just left and went back to floating above GBB.
Partly cloudy now.
1:53PM  Female on GBB roof edge.  Male is flying east from south of CBB to towards GBB with prey.  Male goes around far side of GBB for updrafts and rises to float above GBB, then glides down to the ground 50 yards north of  the nest.  Female launches and follows the male.
2:10PM  Both adults circling GBB.
2:15PM  No further observations this day,

4/27/09
Light overcast, south breeze, 70 degrees.
8:50AM  No birds visible.
8:54AM  One adult on GBB roof, other is circling GBB.
8:56-9:07AM  One adult on GBB roof, other stomping around in the nest.
9:40AM  Both adults on GBB roof, getting more overcast.
10:25AM  Both still on roof.
10:36AM  One adult on GBB roof, other soaring nearby.
10:37AM  One adult still soaring but other gone from roof and not visible.
10:38-11:45AM  One adult on GBB roof.
11:45AM  Starting to drizzle.
12:50  One adult still on GBB roof, pretty dark with some streetlights on.  Raining, breeze has shifted to being from the north.
1:03PM  No birds visible.
1:18PM  Blowing rain.
2:10PM  No birds visible.
2:15PM  Male is soaring above GBB in a windy drizzle.
2:24PM  No birds visible, drizzle stopping.
2:32PM  Female circling GBB.
4:25PM  One adult on GBB roof, precipitation is over.
4:49PM  Female is on GBB roof, male is soaring around the roof with prey.

4/28/09
Light fog, 68 degrees, faint north breeze.
8:53AM  No birds visible.
11:00AM  Weak south breeze now.
11:06AM  Still no birds visible.
11:19AM-1:00PM  Male is on GBB roof while female is on the nest.
1:02PM  Male launched and floated around the vicinity, female still on the nest.
1:08PM  Male is hunting 300 yards south SE of the nest at canopy level.
1:26PM  Female perched on GBB roof edge while male floats just above GBB roof.
1:17PM  Male lands next to the female.
1:28PM  Male is at 150’ altitude, above GBB , female still on GBB roof.
1:41PM  Male still floating around above GBB roof while female still perches there.
2:02PM  Female still on roof but male not visible.
2:20-2:40PM  Both adults flying together, first around GBB, then around the immediate vicinity.  Then female lands on GBB roof followed by the male who lands on the female’s back and copulates.  Then both adults fly off.
2:43PM  Female not visible but male is soaring around.
3:51PM  No birds visible.
4:40PM  Female is on GBB roof while male is hunting east of the nest.  Male then circles back to float above the perching female.
4:45PM  Both adults do formation flying and swooping around GBB.

4/29/09
Overcast, south breeze, mild, humid
9:00AM  One adult on GBB roof.
9:22AM  Both adults on GBB roof copulating.
9:38AM  Adults are in loose formation flying between nest and GBB.
9:56AM  The male is hunting at 60-90’ altitude roughly over the nest area.
10:00AM  Male is now circling at 70-100’ just north of Loop 410.  A male grackle chases him although the hawk has no prey.
10:05AM  The male is back floating  between GBB and the nest at 100’ altitude.  A Red-shouldered Hawk is also circling the same area and is not challenged by the Swainson’s Hawk.  The female is not visible.
11:08-11:20AM  The male has prey north of Loop 410 and is soaring around on updrafts.
12:19  One adult is on the nest.
12:50  The male is soaring above BBQ.
1:06-5:06PM  No hawks visible.




4/30/09

No observations prior to 11:00AM
11:00AM  Partly cloudy, mild south breeze, 78 degrees.
11:05AM  One adult at the nest gets up and flies off towards FNB, gaining altitude.  On circling over loop 410 it is joined by the mate and both soar together.
11:09AM  Adults are still in formation flight at GBB and loop 410 area, dangling their legs slightly, not hunting, just playing.
11:17AM  One adult back on GBB roof
12:57  Male on GBB roof, female not visible.
2:12PM  Female on GBB roof.  Male floated above a minute or two then glided in a shallow dive to the nest.  He descended to the base of the nest tree at high speed and swooped vertically up 50’, banked over and began hunting at canopy height around the nest.
2:15PM  Male landed at the nest but within a minute took off, flying to loop 410 between GBB and FNB where he was joined by the female who had just launched from GBB roof.  They then soared together over loop 410, drifting off towards Tesoro bldg.
2:18PM  Male returned to GBB and floated above the roof, female not visible.
2:23PM  Female just landed at the nest and settled into it.  The male is floating around above GBB.
2:57PM  One adult is settled in the nest, other not visible.
3:15PM  Male has prey held in one talon, soaring above BBB, north of loop 410 but moving south.  The male glided straight to the nest, descending and speeding up on approach.  However he landed on the ground at the base of the nest tree rather than at the nest and is out of sight behind foliage at the ground.
3:40PM  One adult in the nest, settled.  Other adult is not visible.
4:05PM  No birds visible but one could be in the nest.
4:16PM  Female just left the nest, male is perched on GBB.
4:17PM  Adults copulate on GBB roof.
4:18PM  Female stays on GBB roof, male leaves, flying off over loop 410 towards Tesoro bldg.
4:20PM  One adult, probably the female, on GBB roof.

5/1/09
Overcast, calm, but clouds show south breeze, 72 degrees
8:21AM  Male on GBB roof.
8:30AM  Male made a short flight towards the nest in dead air, couldn’t find enough lift to soar, so flapped back to GBB.
8:45-9:10AM  No birds visible, faint breeze now.
9:11-11:00AM  One adult on GBB roof.
11:35-11:46AM  Male is soaring against CBB.
12:25  Female is leading male round and round GBB at mid-level.
12:27  Male is circling high above GBB, around 150-200’ altitude and female is not visible.
12:30  Female comes gliding in at 200-300’ altitude and both soar at 200-300’ altitude and are joined by a Red-shouldered Hawk in what has turned out to be a thermal.
12:32  Female is at 250’ above GBB and male is at 400’ above GBB.  A vulture is at 600’ altitude above both.
12:35  The female has slowly descended and now lands on GBB roof edge.  The male also comes down and circles at 150’ altitude above CBB.
12:37  Female launched from GBB and glided to the nest, perching on the nest edge awhile.  Male not in sight.
12:42  Male is circling with prey over GBB roof, gaining altitude to 150’.
12:45  Male begins  the glide down to the nest.
12:47  The female leaves the nest to meet the male halfway.  They latch talons, both gripping the prey and fall vertically 50’ in altitude before the male lets go, giving the female possession of the prey.  The female drifts around between the nest and loop 410 for seven minutes holding the prey and gliding at 70-100’ altitude.  The Male follows above at 150-200’ altitude.
12:56  Female tires of drifting with the prey and sets a long glide down to the nest area.  She gains speed and at high speed disappears at ground level at the base of the nest tree behind foliage.  She does not go up to the nest but remains on or very near the ground with the prey.
12:59  No birds visible.
1:05PM  Male has landed on GBB roof and is preening.  1:08PM  Male launches and soars a little, then glides down to the base of the nest tree where female had disappeared  but is probably still eating the prey.
1:11PM  Both adults launch from the ground or close to the ground and gain altitude, then begin formation flying for a minute.
1:12PM  Male is floating above GBB but decides to glide down to the nest where he lands on the edge, then settles into the nest.
1:13PM  Meanwhile the female shows up from somewhere north of loop 410 and lands on GBB roof, male still settled on the nest.
1:26PM  One adult, probably still the male, is on the nest while other adult is not in sight.
1:30-3:10PM  No observations
3:14PM  Female is soaring at BBB at 70-90’ altitude while male is swooping and diving far above GBB around 150-300'’altitude.
3:27PM  Both adults in formation flying around GBB.
It appears the nest is now occupied about 70% of the time so full-time incubation is about to start and at least one egg is probably laid.
No further observations this day
5/4/09
Partly cloudy, south breeze, 70 degrees.
Based on today's activities incubation has begun.
8:45AM  One adult on GBB, other not visible.
8:53AM  No birds visible.
9:20AM  Male is on GBB, female is on the nest.
9:35AM  Male on GBB launches, glides towards the nest, passes over it, and continues a ways south to hunt at 60-90’ altitude.
9:52AM  Male is back on GBB.
10:03AM  Male leaves GBB roof, circles a few times in dead air and lands again.
10:17AM  Male is gone again but female is still on the nest.
10:30-10:49AM  Male is back on GBB roof.
10:54AM  Male is gone again.
11:23AM  Female is on GBB preening.  Male is on the nest.  I missed the transfer.
11:25AM  Female launches from GBB when pestered by a Mockingbird.
11:27AM  Male leaves the nest unattended and flies off toward the female who is drifting in GBB updrafts.  Female leads the male in two circles around GBB at mid to upper story level, then lands back on GBB roof.  Male then floats above GBB roof for a minute.
11:29AM  Female launches and both glide in a loose formation flight at 150’ altitude with the male about 30’ above the female.
11:32AM  Female lands again on GBB roof while the male continues to soar at 125-150’ altitude between GBB and the nest
11:33AM  Male descends and glides to the nest and settles in.  This marks a six minute interval when the nest has been unoccupied.  This is pretty short so at least an egg or two must be in the nest.
11:35AM  Female leaves GBB and joins the male at the nest.
11:45AM  I think both adults are still at the nest, it is definitely still occupied based on movement there.
12:53  Male is circling over loop 410, drifting south at 100’ altitude.  It appears the male took about a 45 minute turn incubating this morning.
12:58  Male landed on GBB roof.  Nest is occupied by the female.
1:17PM  Male is soaring between GBB and CBB at 90-125’ altitude.
1:19PM  Male glides down towards the occupied nest, flaring just before the nest and goes on to hunt in the vicinity.  Female does not move off the nest.
1:22PM  Female leaves the nest and both adults fly north of loop 410 at 60-80’ altitude.
This marks the second time today the nest is left unattended and is from 2-42 minutes in duration.
1:24PM  Female returns to GBB and circles GBB roof, then lands there.  Cannot tell if male is on the nest. 
2:04PM  No birds visible except for an adult occasionally moving on the nest.
2:27PM  Male on GBB roof, female on the nest.
3:32PM  Female still on the nest, male is hunting at 40-70’ altitude between CBB, GBB, and Tesoro bldg.
3:38PM  Male has risen to 400’ altitude and is above the nest.
4:30PM Male is on GBB roof.
5:09PM  Male not visible.
5/5/09
Overcast, south breeze, 72 degrees,
8:51AM  One adult on GBB roof.
8:54AM  No birds visible.  Cannot tell for certain if nest is occupied but expect it is.
9:00-10:58AM  No observations
10:58AM  Female is on the nest while the male is soaring just south of CBB.
1:00PM  No birds visible.  Cannot tell if nest id occupied but expect it is.
2:11PM  Nest is occupied as there is occasional movement in it.
2:35PM  Female is circling the top floors of GBB and floating above GBB.  Male not visible so probably stuck on the nest.
2:54PM  Male now floating above GBB while female is seen on the nest.  Visible missing primaries in left wing of the female when soaring allow easy identification of this particular pair of adults.
2:57PM  Female still on the nest but male is not visible.
3:36PM  No birds in the sky, cannot tell about the nest at this sun angle.
4:13PM  Male is gliding around at 125’, hunting between BBB and CBB.  Still cannot see into nest tree with lighting as it is.
4:16PM  Male drifted back north of loop 410, still hunting.
4:41PM  Movement at the nest shows it is occupied.  Other adult not visible.

5/6/09
Overcast, south breeze, 72 degrees
8:38AM  No birds visible.  Nest looks occupied but cannot tell for sure.
9:07AM  The male is floating above GBB.
9:09AM  Male has landed on GBB roof.
9:18-9:35AM  Slight movement on the nest shows it is and has been occupied all morning by the female.  The male is still on GBB roof.
9:49AM  No birds visible.
10:07AM  Female is now on GBB roof and movement at the nest shows the male is now there.
10:35AM  No birds visible.
10:37AM  Male is on GBB roof so female must have gone back to incubate.
11:05AM  Both adults are hovering over GBB roof.  The female lands on the roof and the male lands on her and copulates, then he launches off her back and immediately glides to the nest and settles down.  Female stays on GBB roof.
11:22AM  Male is back on GBB roof, expect female is back on the nest.
11:39AM  No birds visible.
1:05PM  Hot, mostly clear sky, light breeze.
1:08-201PM  No birds visible and no movement at the nest.
2:54PM  Nest is occupied but other adult is not visible.
4:06PM  One adult is perched in the outer twigs of scrub oak below and just west of the nest.  Cannot tell if nest is occupied but expect it is.

5/7/09
Overcast with a smoke type haze.  Humid, calm and 72 degrees.
8:45-9:39AM  Male is on GBB roof and no movement at the nest.
9:48AM  Male is on GBB being pestered by a Mockingbird.  He launches, glides around a bit, then glides down into the canopy 25 yards  south of the nest.
9:50-11:47AM  No birds visible.
1:28PM  Movement at the nest indicates it is occupied but other adult is not visible.
13:30-4:12PM  Only a few observations but no hawks seen.
4:34PM  No birds visible

5/8/09
Light overcast, south breeze, 72 degrees.
8:51-9:10AM  No birds visible.
10:00AM  The male is floating against CBB south face for updrafts.
10:10AM  Male is hunting between CBB and GBB at 60-80’ altitude.  He is missing a tail feather.
10:30-11:41AM  No birds visible.
No further observations this day.

5/11/09
Light overcast, SE breeze, 72 degrees.
8:40AM  Male is on GBB roof.
8:43AM  Male has left and flown north over BBQ.
8:48AM  Male is back on GBB roof.
8:55AM  Male glided down to a tree adjacent to the nest tree.  There, he was buzzed first by a Mockingbird, then by two grackles.  He launched and flew off north stopping somewhere near the nest in the canopy but not at the nest.
10:27AM  No birds visible.
11:48AM  The female is soaring south over loop 410 between GBB and CBB with prey.  She was eating in the air.  She dropped the prey from about 100’ and let it fall to the ground on Nacagdoches.  The prey fell very slowly so must have been mostly an empty carcass.
11:50-3:30PM  No observations.
3:32-4:20PM  The male is on GBB roof.
4:41PM  No birds visible.

5/12/09
Partly cloudy, south breeze, 73 degrees.
8:50AM  One adult on GBB roof, looks like the female probably.
9:22AM  No birds visible.
9:39AM  One adult on GBB roof, looks like probably the male.
10:52AM  Male is on GBB roof.
11:15AM-1:15PM  No birds visible.
2:00-4:00PM  No observations.
4:04PM  No birds visible.

5/13/09
Forgot to jot down the weather.
9:00AM  One adult on GBB roof.
9:22AM  The male is floating above GBB.
9:28AM  The male glided down to the nest vicinity and landed in a treetop adjacent to the nest tree.
9:32AM  The male left the treetop and proceeded to hunt at canopy height.
11:44AM  The male is hunting at Loop 410 and BBQ around 40-80’ altitude.
1:00-4:45PM  No birds visible.

5/14/09
Partly cloudy, south breeze, 74 degrees.
9:00-11:00AM  No birds.
11:29AM  One adult on GBB roof.
2:21PM  The male is circling against CBB updrafts with prey.  The prey is a baby bird which he is eating while on the wing and being pursued by grackles.
2:30-4:10PM  No birds visible.
4:14PM  The male is on GBB roof.

5/15/09
Light overcast, south breeze, damp, 73 degrees.
8:42AM  No birds visible.
9:11AM  One adult on the nest, other is perched two feet above the nest.
9:12AM  The perching adult just flew down and into the lower canopy.
9:29AM  The female is on GBB roof.
9:45AM  The female launched from GBB and descended into the canopy 100-200 yards south of he nest.
10:00-11:05AM  No observations.
11:05AM  No birds visible.
11:17AM  The male is hunting over BBQ at 70-100’ altitude.
11:19AM  The male is back on GBB roof, preening.
1:00PM  No birds visible.
1:20PM  The male is circling at 150’ altitude above GBB.
2:18-2:45PM  No birds visible.

5/18/09
Clear sky, calm but light NE breeze by 10:40AM, 65-80 degrees.
8:50-10:24AM  One adult on GBB roof.
10:25-10:31AM  The Met Life dirigible motored directly over the nest territory while the female was on the nest and the male was perched on GBB.  The Dirigible passed about 300-400 yards east of the actual nest.  Neither bird had any visible reaction.  The blimp’s altitude was  400-800’ and was traveling from downtown to the east side of the airport and crossed loop 410 at about the Frost bank.
10:55AM  The male is still on GBB roof.
11:30AM  No birds visible.
1:13PM  One adult on GBB roof.
2:04PM  The male is hunting between GBB and CBB at 60’ altitude.
2:23PM  No birds visible.  There was an incubation swap between 2:04 and 2:45PM.  At 2:23PM the male is on the nest.
2:45-3:10PM  The female is on GBB roof, preening her tail feathers.
3:12PM  No birds visible.
3:13PM  The female has flown to the nest and just landed.  The male got up and flew off.  The female settled in on the nest.
3:18PM  The male is hunting just north of loop 410 at 80-120’ altitude.
3:31-4:04PM  The male is gliding on updrafts at CBB and is still missing a center tail feather.
4:18PM  No birds visible.
4:30-4:35PM  Both adults are in the air briefly.  The male is swooping and diving with 100’ dives between 50 and 150’ altitude while the female drifts around 70’ altitude, below the male most of the time.  The female lands on GBB roof.  The male lands on the female, copulates,, lifts off,  and immediately starts a fast glide to the nest without touching down on the roof.  He drops right into the nest cup without landing on a perch or nest edge first.  The female remains on GBB roof.
4:38-4:45PM  The female is still on GBB roof preening her back.

5/19/09
Clear sky, faint NE breeze, 55 degrees.
8:40AM  The male is on GBB roof.
9:10AM  The male launches and drifts around.
9:30AM  The male is back on GBB roof.
11:00-11:15AM  No birds visible.
11:31AM  The female is now on GBB roof, preening mainly back feathers.
11:45AM  The female is out of sight but the male is circling at 100-150’ above the nest to FNB area.
12:37  No birds visible.
12:40-12:54  The female is on GBB roof several feet back from the edge and is preening.
1:25PM  The female, now back on the nest, is moving slightly.  The male just descended into the canopy within 100 yards of the nest but not at the nest.
4:17PM  The male is hunting south of CBB at 60-100’ altitude and then drifted over the nest.  He dropped to 70’ altitude and dangled his feet when passing the nest, then soared back up to hunt some more from 70-100’ altitude.
4:36PM  No birds visible. 

5/20/09
calm, clear, 65 degrees
8:50-9:40AM  No hawks visible.
9:41AM  Weak east breeze.  Both male and female emerge from canopy around the nest, and fly about two minutes.  Then the female lands on GBB roof.  I was diverted then and did not get to track the male for a minute.
9:45AM  Male glided down to the nest and dropped directly into it.
9:48AM  Female still on GBB roof, preening while the male incubates.
10:14AM –3:30PM  No birds visible.
3:32PM  Male is hunting at 80-120’ altitude south of CBB.
4:15PM  One adult on GBB roof.
4:19PM  No birds visible.
4:22PM  The female is on GBB roof, about 6’ back from the edge, preening wing feathers.
4:24PM  Female launches and soars north over loop 410.
4:40PM  No birds visible.

5/21/09
Calm, clear, 60 degrees.
8:50AM  One adult on GBB roof, looks like probably the male.
9:30AM  One adult gliding over to the nest tree lands three feet above the nest.  No birds on GBB, cannot tell about the nest itself.
9:42AM  The adult is still perching 3’ above the nest, still cannot tell about the nest.
10:15AM  Female on GBB roof.
10:28AM-12:37  No birds visible.
1:30PM  One adult soaring near CBB.
5:59PM  No birds visible.
3:25PM  Movement occasionally on the nest.
4:40PM  No birds visible.

5/22/09
Partly cloudy, calm, 66 degrees.
8:25-8:45AM  One adult on GBB roof.
8:55AM  No birds visible, now overcast and clouds moving south.
9:50-10:03AM  Male on GBB roof.  Heavy overcast, calm, roving showers.
10:07-11:21AM  No birds visible.
No further observations this day.

5/26/09
Partly cloudy, damp, 72 degrees.
8:57AM  No birds visible.
9:14AM  One adult on GBB roof.
9:23-10:20AM  No birds visible.
11:18AM  Both adults on GBB roof.
11:19AM  Both adults launch and soar for half a minute, then the male glides off to the nest, landing directly in the nest cup.  The female lands on GBB roof.
11:20AM  Female lifts off GBB and circled  GBB about three times, landing again on the roof.  Male still has the missing center tail feather and female still has the two missing left wing feathers.
1:00-1:14PM  No birds visible
2:12PM  Both adults circling together at 200’ altitude over GBB.
2:31PM  One adult at 150’ altitude dove down to the nest, landing in a tree adjacent to the nest.
4:30PM  No birds visible.

5/27/09
Heavy overcast, thunderstorm nearby, dark, calm, 70 degrees.
9:00AM  No birds visible.
9:10-11:20AM  No observations.
11:25AM  Sky is clearing.  One adult soaring between GBB and CBB
11:39AM-2:34PM  Sky now nearly clear.  No birds visible.
2:39PM  Female circled GBB, then drifted to vicinity of FNB.
Incubation swap sometime between 2:25 and 3:10PM
3:13PM  Male is soaring on updrafts against CBB.
Another incubation swap between 3:20 and 4:04PM
4:08PM  Female is soaring from south of CBB, past GBB, then turns around and lands on GBB.
4:11PM  Female went soaring south of CBB, hunting at 80-100’ altitude but found nothing and returned to GBB at 4:15PM
4:27PM  No birds visible.
Incubation swap between 4:10 and 4:25PM
4:28PM  One adult just left the nest tree and dropped down near or on the ground.  Male is flying in updrafts along CBB.

5/28/09
Clear, calm, 72 degrees.
8:47AM-3:20PM  No birds visible.
3:25PM  Female glided past CBB and GBB, banked right and descended into the canopy 50 yards south of the nest, hunting.
4:25PM  No birds visible.