Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Good news [we hope] about the Triborough Bridge [Astoria Park] redtail family

Jules Corkery, our liaison to the redtail family living in the shadow of the Triborough Bridge, sends a guardedly optimistic report of her efforts to get the city to suspend construction while the hawk family is in residence:

Hi all!

Today, I got a very good response from Cathy Sweeney from the office of David Merritti, the acting President of the MTA's Bridge and Tunnels division. Here is a copy of her initial email response to our phone conversation:

"Dear Ms. Corkery,

I just left you a voice message. We are definitely aware of the birds and have contacted the wildlife people at environmental protection and also the Parks Dept. We are awaiting advise and nothing will be done in that area. As I indicated we are very sensitive to birds on our facilities and have gone to great lengths to protect them and this
situation will be no different. Feel free to send the petition, but we need no prompting in this area. In fact, I am sending you a recent photo of four peregrine falcon chicks born in a box nest on the Throgs Neck Bridge that we had constructed for them.

Cathy Sweeney"

I couldn't copy the photo of the falcons but be assured that they could get the gold at the cute olympics .
When I returned to Astoria Park tonight, the large equipment was still parked at the base of the bridge but no work was happening as it was well past "quittin' time". The parents were hunting on the north side of the bridge working in tandem to snare pigeons flying north under the bridge (at least that is what it looked like to me). The babies were practicing flying as they otherwise quietly settled down like the sun.

Early tomorrow morning I'll see if the MTA B&T is sincere. I want to sleep deeply tonight with the thought that the promise will be unbroken but I think I've lived in NYC long enough to know better. So, I shall let tomorrow bring the news of the day to me and I will pass it on to you.

All the best, Jules