The births of the baby falcons couldn't have come at a better time.
At least three of the four falcon eggs on top of San Jose City Hall hatched open Easter morning, and on Monday, their parents, named Clara and Fernando, were performing their parental duties like pros, according to Glenn Stewart, a biologist and director of the University of California at Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group.
"This is a big deal," he said, noting that both adult falcons were gathering food for their chicks.
Stewart said he couldn't quite see whether the fourth chick had been born, but he suspects that it has been.
"Mom is brooding all the time, and she's keeping them warm," he said. "She is blocking the view."
Stewart plans to scale up to the 18th ledge of City Hall on May 1 to determine the genders of the chicks as well as band their legs, so biologists can track their whereabouts in the future and learn more about the lives of the peregrine falcons.
Clara, the female falcon, first landed on City Hall in 2007. She has had several lovers, and this is her sixth season giving birth in downtown San Jose.
To view the the live falcon cam for the San Jose City Hall nest, visit www2.ucsc.edu/scpbrg/nestcamSJ.htm.