Peregrine chicks hatch in downtown Boise

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Three peregrine falcon chicks hatched over the weekend in the nest box on the 14th floor of One Capital Center in downtown Boise.

The chicks weighed about 1½ ounces (40 grams) when they emerged from their shells. They will be full-grown when they leave the nest and by the time they fledge in July, the little fluff balls will be 18 inches tall and have a wingspan of more than 3 feet.

The adults will brood the chicks for about 10 days, depending on the weather. The young birds are not yet capable of regulating their own body temperatures, so they need the adults for warmth. The young ones also can huddle together to keep warm.

You can see the adults leave the chicks alone for short periods, but you can be assured that at least one adult is close by, ready to spring into action if there is any threat. The chicks can appear vulnerable without one of the parents in the nest, but the adult birds have a lot invested in their offspring at this point and are not likely to abandon or neglect them, according to The Peregrine Fund.

You can watch the chicks at The Peregrine Fund's webcam HERE

The nest box has been used each spring since 2003. Last year, four chicks successfully fledged from the nest, though one died about a month later from injuries suffered in a collision.

The ledge where the nest box is located simulates the high, steep cliffs the falcons use in the wild. The falcons, which strictly eat other birds, prey on a plentiful supply of pigeons, mourning doves, starlings and other birds downtown.

Photo provided by The Peregrine Fund

I Always

enjoy the "falcon cam". once in a while we get the adults hunting over the house, saw a kill in my back yard one year, all that the Peregrine left were feathers and one claw of whatever bird that was lunch that day. When my wife got her "Chorkey" pup I had to put a roof on his little run.....

I actually witnessed one just after getting a kill.

I was at work on Broadway and I went outside in time to see a small bird fall from the sky followed shortly thereafter by one of peregrines. It was quite awesome.