Typically, when the rat is put out the window onto the ledge, the formel grabs it and plops it down at the front of the nest, much to the excitement of the eyasses who now clearly recognize an imminent meal.
T2 almost immediately arrives on the nest, if he's not already there...
... grabs the rat with his talons, and flies to a nearby roof, ledge or monument where he starts eating the rat - usually the head and neck. After 5-10 minutes, he returns the rat to the nest.
Sometimes he stays to feed the eyasses...
... but he often drops and runs, leaving the eyasses to figure out what to do next.
I asked John Blakeman what this behavior meant, and whether T2 was an opportunistic freeloader. It turns out that T2 deserves credit rather than criticism. John Blakeman also comments on the miraculous adaptation that T2 has made in feeding the eyasses:
"The biological mystery of T2's astonishing fulfillment of normal tiercel duties at the FI nest continues. It's progressing just as I might have written it in some fictional story about modern urban Red-tails.
Regarding T2's prompt removal of the rats. I don't see this as stealing of any sort; rather, it's the pro forma, ritualistic performance of instinctive tiercel behaviors. T2 sees the new rat on the ledge, accurately, as new prey that he must "capture," fly off with, and then - very importantly - prepare for the eyasses by decapitating or otherwise rendering the rat both completely "dead," and opened up for easy feeding to the eyasses, either by himself or the formel.
The real astonishment, however, is T2's deliberate, effective, and frequent feeding of the eyasses. Tiercel haggards at many nests do little of this, leaving most feedings to the formel. But T2 has taken up this duty with gusto and efficacy. He's ever more into the entire tiercel haggard role at the nest.
There isn't much more a resident tiercel parent could do at this stage. The only question will be if T2 assists in defending the summer territory and guides (as best this can be done) the fledged eyasses into appropriate hunting areas. Will he, for example, drop captured prey so that the free-flying eyasses (fledglings) can then spot the prey and decide to hunt such prey for themselves? Right now, there is little doubt T2 will do all of this--and who knows what more.
T2 wins the Red-tailed Hawk Tiercel of the Year Award.
And The Franklin Institute, by the provision of both the nest cam and chat room, and the (formerly) essential provision of sustaining prey on the ledge, wins the Red-tailed Hawk Human Assistance and Appreciation Award.