Two red-tailed hawks, one male and one female, have returned to their nest on the west side of the STEPS building.
Now Lehigh is hoping you can help name the birds, which you can view via live stream at: http://www1.lehigh.edu/about/hawks-nest-camera. When the hawks first appeared on South Mountain a few years ago, Lehigh students, faculty and staff monitored the progress of the nest day after day.
Fascinated by the birds’ activity, George Yasko, Lehigh’s field projects laboratory manager, had the idea to install a camera to share a live feed of the hawks’ nest with the Lehigh community. His idea became reality last fall when a high-end web camera was installed with the help of the Office of Sustainability, Library & Technology Services and Facilities Services.
Yasko said it was a collaborative effort to get the camera up and running and live streaming to anyone on campus. However, once the camera was installed, the hawks had already left.
“We were thrilled to see the hawks come back, especially now that people can watch them on live stream,” he said.
The hawks can be identified by their broad, rounded wings and short, wide tails. According to Cornell University’s lab of ornithology, red-tailed hawks are the most common hawk in North America.
In addition to watching the hawks for fun, researchers can use the footage to observe behavioral patterns, rituals and habits, he says.
The hawks' nest camera is now available to everyone in a high- or low-resolution feed.
With the help of students, faculty, staff and alumni, the hawks will finally have names. Vote for your choice in the Twitter poll below. The names will be announced after spring break.
Story by Lauren Weaver