Fans eagerly anticipating the hatching of UC Davis Medical Center's peregrine falcon eggs may not have to wait much longer. As you can see on the video livestream, the mother peregrine is currently nestled atop four eggs. Based on the standard incubation period, they may start to hatch soon.
During this period, one of the adult falcons has been attending the eggs most of the time. Prey has been brought into the nest box by the foraging adult for the pair to share. The falcons exchange incubation duties about every 30 minutes to an hour.
A day or so prior to hatching the chicks will begin vocalizing from inside the egg and pecking to work their way out. The parent sitting on the eggs can hear the chirping and feel the vibration, so their behavior will change. They might do a lot of shuffling, get up and look down at the eggs more often, settle back down, and be up looking again within a short time.
After hatching, the chicks will need to be kept warm since they can’t regulate their own temperature for the first week or so. This may look similar to the incubation period, but the parent (mostly the mom) will be sitting up higher and may hold their wings out from their body more than we see during incubation.
Win a chance to name the peregrine falcon chicks
Remember, UC Davis Health is holding a contest to see who can guess when the first peregrine falcon egg will hatch. For those of you who want to get precise with your predictions, we are going to define “hatching” as the first moment that a moderator sees the first chick’s full head clear out of the egg.
The winner of this year's contest will win the opportunity to name the peregrine falcon chicks. We'd like to request that names be UC Davis-related.
Go here to enter your egg-ucated guess.