Early summer means it's time for baby falcons! The MTA has released photos of a trio of peregrine falcon chicks currently nested 360 feet up in a box installed on one of the Throgs Neck Bridge's towers and hoo boy, are these things cute. One female and two male chicks were banded by city Department of Environmental Protection research scientist Chris Nadareski, and fortunately he was accompanied by an MTA photographer. Look at those fluffy feathers!

Peregrine falcon chicks hatch each spring, and early June appears to be the MTA's preferred time for identifying and banding the three-week-old fledglings. The process helps the city track the number of falcons throughout the city and quickly identify them if they become sick or hurt. In addition to the Throgs Neck nesting box, there's a falcon home 215 feet up atop the Rockaway tower of the Marine Parkway, and another on the 693 foot tall Brooklyn tower of the Verrazano Bridge. MTA bridges and tunnels have been part of New York state's nesting programs since 1983.

"Peregrine falcons were nearly wiped out in the 1960s as a result of pesticides in their food supply, and remain on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation endangered birds list," the MTA said when last year's new chicks were banded. "Urban falcons like to nest atop bridges, church steeples and high-rise buildings because they provide an excellent vantage point for hunting prey, including pigeons and small birds." That makes sense, because Peregrine falcons are murderous and fast as hell.