Our two red-tailed hawk eggs have hatched!

For more than a month the dutiful parents have been nesting on the California Dome, right here at the top of the city, and incubating two eggs. See our earlier pictures and information from a San Diego Zoo bird expert.

And with the happy news, it’s also time to announce the names of all four red-tailed hawks. We gathered all the suggestions sent in via social media, made them into a survey for you to take, and here are the winners:

  • Rocky, the papa, after Rocky Balboa, in reference to both Balboa Park and the classic 1976 movie Rocky, which featured a rough fellow who took on all comers against all odds.
  • Cali, the mama, after the state of California and the California buildings: the California Dome (where the nest is situated), the California Tower, and the California Quadrangle, which includes all the buildings that house the San Diego Museum of Man.
  • Horus, the first little fluff-ball, named after the ancient Egyptian deity with the head of a hawk or falcon, in reference to our Ancient Egypt exhibit. Horus was the god of the sun, which is appropriate given the southern-facing nest.
  • SheChuck, the Kumeyaay Indian word for “hawk.” Hear it here on the Kumeyaay Language and Culture website.

Here’s a not-very-close video of Cali feeding her young. These next two are better-quality videos which, like the first six photos below, were shot by Earnie Grafton of the San Diego Union-Tribune, and are used here with permission. Video two. Video three. She’s ripping into the flesh of some animal and putting it right in the beaks of the youngsters. From the photos, it looks like it might be a bit of rabbit. There’s also a really great report from KFMB-TV CBS 8, which also shows mama bringing home a rabbit for dinner.

Below are pictures of the fluffy guys. They’re huddled together for warmth so they’re hard to tell apart, but they are indeed both there.