Friday, 6 April 2007

Even more eggs-sighted! - video clips

We now have two eggs! The Cathedral's Head Verger rang this evening to announce that a second egg had been laid. We'll know exactly when once we review our 24hr video recording after Easter.
Meanwhile after the excitement of our first egg, here are some key video moments captured on Tuesday morning. Double-click the image to play this YouTube video.

At 5:46am the egg is laid, and we get our first glimpse of it just moments later. Just before dawn the male arrives to take his first look at the new arrival in the nest before flying off again. Under our infra-red light the egg looks white, but then we see the egg in daylight for the first time. The male does his bit at keeping the egg warm, although we've already seen periods of many hours this week when the egg is left exposed. This is normal. Incubation of peregrine eggs only starts in earnest when the last egg in the clutch is ready to be laid.

But we've included one final surprise. We were stunned to see one of last year's juveniles turn up on the nest platform to inspect and touch the egg. Note the amazing moment when (she?) lays over the egg and does some nest scraping actions before the adult male arrives and, rather timidly, takes back the egg and sits down on it. We were really surprised to capture these moments, but we#ve since learnt that it is not an unknown occurrence for juveniles from a previous year to get involved in a nest, even to the point of feeding a chick. (If you can't see the video when you double-click the image, there are some stills in the blog entry below. )

Thanks to Philip for updating our peregrine information leaflet. You can download this by going to "Key Links" on the left side of this page.

Finally, we have now been assured by Capita that they will get us connected to the internet by Monday 16th April, if not before. So watch this space for news.


Anonymous said...

Are there other suitable sites for the juveniles to nest in? Wouldn't it be good to encourage more falcons to nest + breed here? John

Project Member (Derby Museum) said...

There are very few other suitable sites in the Derby area, so the juveniles will eventually move off into other parts of England.

We have already witnessed our Derby birds seeing off other intruding peregrines, so there would seem to be little benefit in encouraging more pairs to breed in the immediate area as they simply wouldn't be tolerated. We do know that a party of visiting architects from cathedrals in the east of England recently expressed a desire to have them on their own buildings. They may leave a mess, but the rain soon washes it away. This contrasts with the mess left by feral pigeons both on and inside the buildings which is much harder to deal with.