Sunday, 30 September 2007

Cooling off

The city may have been bathed in sunshine early this morning but there was a distinct chill in the air as I stood looking up at the tower. The female was sitting motionless on the right hand gargoyle, mostly with her eyes closed (or rather with the nictitating membrane pulled across them, as my amateur digiscoped photo shows).

The male was a bit more active, flying in to land on the central gargoyle, then hopping along to see if there was anything left in the larder (the lead outflow pipe to the left) and soon after flying off when he found there wasn't!
During the two days of strong easterly winds, the birds had moved to the west face of the tower to get some shelter. I could tell this because there was obvious prey remains both on the gargoyle above the main (west) entrance to the cathedral and on the stone flags below. Lots of feathers, even some way from the base of the tower, indicated the prey to have been a golden plover.


Overhead a skylark flew south and gulls drifted past. In the bushes at the back of the cathedral, a party of long tailed tits foraged in a cherry tree while a robin sang its melancholy autumn song.


Winter approacheth methinks!


Nick B
Ps. New visitors to the blog please see the previous post which explains the current situation re. the web cams etc.

24 comments:

Anonymous said...

Peregrine on left hand nest 17.39 Camera time

Anonymous said...

Pax Canada.
Nick, I loved your description of the day, :-) Its hard to believe that it is just starting on the other side of the world with the falcons there just hatching their eggs, and that with the computer we are able to see it happening, but I have to say my heart belongs to Derby and the falcons there :-)

Karen Anne said...

Hijacking the blog for a moment, I've been trying to figure out why the Australian peregrine web cams, which seem to be in the same time zone, 14 hours ahead of the East coast U.S., seem to be differently visible, if that's a phrase :-) The frodocam sees daylight, apparently, earlier than the Alcoa Anglesea one.

Next up, figuring out why the Anglesea one is painted hot pink :-)

Karen Anne said...

Bird on the nestbox, checking out the surrounding area.

Project Member (Derby Museum) said...

As a matter of courtesy, we'd like to advise all of you who read the comments on this blog that the webcam service will cease in mid-October. The absolutely superb service given to us by Streamdays.com will soon expire. I'd like to thank all their staff for a brilliant service at very low cost. They can't have made any profit out of us, but we do hope they have benefited from our partnership in other ways. We plan to put in place an image archive and jpeg service of our own shortly, but we do expect a period with no pictures at all. Please accept our apologies for any break in the service. We have not yet decided how we will develop the webcam service next season, but may still look to Streamdays for their help.

We do intend to keep this "blog" open, and we'll put a general introductory entry right there at the top for all newcomers to see. Once it appears it will stay there all winter, so any new blog entries will appear BELOW it.

It's been a great journey. Thanks for coming with us, wherever you're based in this world.

Nick M.
Derby Museum & Art Gallery

Anonymous said...

Hello from Dayton, Ohio -
Oooh! Those are lovely pictures of your snoozing falcons, thank you! Winter seems far off here in the midwest states but the garden has fizzled out so it must be on the way. I want to thank all of you in Derby who had a hand in this wonderful project again - tho we lost our female this year it was and is always a pleasure to see a falcon couple stake their claim on a nest site and raise such beautiful children in front of the eyes of the world. All of us who watched and learned will be forever enriched by your dedication and hard work.
I cannot wait to read the reports when the cameras fire up again next spring and we can all talk about "our" new babes in the nest! Of course I'll be checking in all winter to read about the activities in Derby.
Thank you again! I LOVE the internet, can you tell at all? :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you Nick and other members who has put all these together. To me, this journey on Derby Peregrine has been so addictive! The webcam, the pictures, the clips, the blog, the articles, everything are very educational. I believe most of us have been enjoyed watching. It's really sad to say goodbye to the birds months' ago, and now to the empty nest. For people living overseas like me, it's not easy for us to make a trip down to the Cathedral, should you have any chance of capturing good pics like the ones on 30Sep, it would be nice to give us an update. Thank you again, I look forward to seeing your next project!

Jennie of Hong Kong
PS. Nick, I still owe you my donation, I'll write you an email once it's done.

Karen Anne said...

Thanks so much to everyone for all your work on this wonderful site.

I started mid-stream this year, what month do the birds start nesting?

Anonymous said...

Well done to everybody for all the hard work this year!
Look forward to the new brood next year.
Heather
Derby

Project Member (Derby Museum) said...

Hi everyone, thanks for those kind words. Karen Ann can find the answer to her question by clicking on the name of a month on the left side of this blog. By looking back at past archived entries we can see that courtship began in earnest in late February, with some great video clips captured in the first week or two of March. I've just looked back to our February's blog entries, and our first rough and ready pictures and video clips. It was interesting to look at the video of when we put up the platform last year, too. It makes us realise how much we have achieved since then. Here's the link:
http://derbyperegrines.blogspot.com/2007/02/web-cameras-installed.html

I hope that next year we don't have the experiences you've had over there in Dayton, Ohio, or indeed in Columbus, and we wish your birds well for next season.

To Jennie in Hong Kong: If you're looking forward to our next project, I hope you like flowers: one such project is to put on the internet some of the results of a ten year project to map and descibe the distribution of over 2000 different wild plants growing across Derby and Derbyshire. Not quite as exciting as peregrines, I'm afraid. But just as important.

I hope that Sue H from Wendover will make herself known at Derby Museum when she comes up. If I'm here and free I'd be pleased to give you a whistlestop tour of the Museum. (or the Magistrates' court, if you'd prefer!)

Nick M.

Karen Anne said...

My excuse for posting this is eyas withdrawal symptoms -

Usually the Frodocam chicks are just pancaked when I look there, but someone put together a video of a recent feeding session at
http://www.birdcinema.com/view_video.php?viewkey=6054a5a720606a769446

Anonymous said...

Bird on nest - RHC (right hand camera) 08.12 ct. It will be sad to miss these webcams. Especially as access to 'the green' is now severely restricted!

John A

Karen Anne said...

What's the green John? The area by the cathedral where people can peregrine-watch? Why is it restricted?

Anonymous said...

Just to answer your quesstion yes the green is or should i say was where we all used to stand and view the peregrines. It is situated to the rear of the cathedral. At present it is all fenced off while it is being redeveloped. hope that answers your question karen. Andy

Anonymous said...

Sorry I missed your question Karen Anne; just been to the dentists (A back-filling...) The Green was an area of grass that had a path going through it to the pavement farther down the road (Full St). This is where a hotel used to be (before the Magistrates Court) and in 1745 Bonnie Prince Charlie is reputed to have spent the night prior to abandoning (on the advice of his council) his march south to take the English throne! Sorry for being so verbose...

Anonymous said...

Redeveloped? Woe...

Anonymous said...

Canada 7.04pm Falcon on nest edge

Anonymous said...

Canada 12.32am
Sorry to say one of the chicks on the Frodo cam has died

Anonymous said...

Hi Nick, whether or not the flowers are less exciting than the peregrines, I'm quite sure that will be another educational project. I look forward to seeing it! Cheers,

Jennie, HK.

helenhoward said...

lovely photos once again. many thanks for all the work done to keep the webcam going and cant wait till spring when you start up again

Karen Anne said...

Maybe bad news about the surviving frodocam eyas -

I have been worried about the last frodocam chick, and just checked in at 1:46 am or so Eastern U.S. time. Initially I thought s/he was okay, as the chick was in a different place than when I had checked a few hours ago and his or her eye seemed open, but then in the flick of an eyelash, the parent and chick disappeared. I fear that the chick had passed away and the parent has removed the body, as with the previous chick.

I hope I am wrong, maybe they have just both moved out of the small camera range.

Karen Anne said...

False alarm, I think. Sorry for scaring everyone witless.

They've moved the camera and the chick is visible and seems to be moving a bit.

Anonymous said...

Whew! I was looking on early this AM and it seemed the adult was happily preening on top of the snoozing chick. I gather there is a small question as to the female this year, possibly not the original "Frieda"...at any rate, the one remaining chick should be in fabulous shape - two adults to feed and teach it to land and fly, excellent odds it would seem. I certainly hope so, getting a falcon "fix" is such a joy for me these days. :)
Take care, still checking in from Dayton!
Jan
xoxo

Karen Anne said...

To make up for scaring everybody, here is a sweet picture from today of the eyas and a parental unit.
http://members.cox.net/katkolling/aus0chickandparent.JPG