Wednesday, 10 August 2011

All goes (relatively) quiet

As we get further into August, so things at the cathedral seem to have gone relatively quiet though I gather that up to three juveniles (plus both adults) have been seen recently on the tower and on Jurys Inn (thanks Ian B for that information).

The adults are certainly due a rest after such a busy season. Rearing four chicks must take its toll.

Adult peregrines have to moult their feathers annually. This usually begins during or just after the nesting season but there is a good deal of variability apparently.
Moult begins with the primary
(outer wing) feathers and can take between18 and 26 weeks to complete.
I have found many moulted peregrine feathers under the tower over the years as my photo shows.
Meanwhile, the close relative of the peregrine, the hobby, still has y
oung in the nest. This
falcon is smaller than the peregrine and is also a migrant. It spends the winter down in southern Africa, only returning to the UK in May. The whole breeding season is about two months later than that of the peregrine. Hobbies are very fast fliers, taking small birds on the wing but they also love to eat insects. In Africa they follow thunderstorms that trigger the swarming of termites. In the UK, when they arrive back in May, they can be seen at several wetlands hawking insects including early damsel and dragonflies.
Last weekend I helped with the ringing of a brood of
young hobbies
only a few miles out of Derby. These birds select old crow nests to nest in and this pair had chosen one in a large oak tree in the middle of a field of wheat.
The earliest of the young hobbies will only just be making their first flights, with some not doing so
until later in August. By the end of September these youngsters set off south, heading down through France and Spain to North Africa and then on to West and even South Africa.

Apparently at this stage they are unable to catch birds, relying solely on insects for their food.

The photo shows a young hobby about to be ringed

What a different lifestyle hobbies have from our peregrines.....

Nick B (DWT)

The painting of a hobby chasing a dragonfly is by Dan Powell


superbrad (Ian) said...

@ Nick B

Hi Nick Three Juveniles still around

Cliff and I started at the Cathedral on Saturday 6th August morning 7am
We saw two Juveniles on the tower one on the east center Gargoil and one on the north face of the tower to the left of the Gargoile close to the lightening conductor. another Juvenile "Presumed it to be 014" was calling from the ledge of Jurys Inn east face next to the blue tower. Also one of the parents was on the letter R on the east lettering below the Juvenile.
Will post some shots on the Flickr site

Regards Ian (AKA superbrad)

Jane (Belper) said...

Nick, both adults in the scrape as I type. Good to see them both together again.
Cheers, Jane

Anonymous said...

Don't know so much about quiet, there's a bird each side of the platform - just sitting....

KerrySuffolk said...

One on platform, one on corbels below and one on pudding cam.

Joy said...

One on lefthand side of scrape and one on tower cam 20.14p.m.

Joyce S Derby said...

We drove past Jury's Inn about 20:10 Thursday, and could see two peregrines on Jury's Inn lettering east face, one on the top of the U, and one on the curve of the J - never seen one perched there before.

Mo Cole Belper said...

Saturday 3pm.....Juvenile on the tower... Mr/Mrs P on the right hand ledge of the scrape.... we are certainly having our monies worth this year...x

AnnieF. said...

Adult on scrape ledge rhs., and what could be a juvenile on the tower.

Nick Brown (DWT) said...

An adult taking prey onto one of the platforms on the police aerial was the only peregrine I saw during a visit to the cathedral early this morning (Sunday). Once it had landed, the bird was impossible to see.
Nick B (DWT)
Ps. Comment moderation may be slow this week due to holidays. Please bear with us.

Phoebe said...

What has happened to the webcam located on the left side of the scrape? It is pointing directly down and the side of the tray along with a tiled roof is in view.

Nick Brown (DWT) said...

Phoebe: obviously the camera has slipped down unfortunately. We won't be able to re-align it without abseiling down so it will be some time until that can be accomplished, especially with Nick M not currently being employed to work on the project. I'm afraid you're all going to have to bear with us for awhile yet. Key people who can make decisions about getting Nick back on board are on leave so no decisions can be taken until early September I'm afraid.
Nick B (DWT)

KerrySuffolk said...

Mon 18.30
Something has been well and truely plucked on the rhs if the platform! Feathers everywhere!

KerrySuffolk said...

Just up loaded a screen capture from the out of place camera which shows one of the birds preening, couldn't quite work out what was head and what was tail!

Anonymous said...

At 10.15pm there are two falcons in view on the left hand camera one on the nest ledge and one on the tower I think. I can't tell if they are juveniles or not anyway it is good to see them.

Anonymous said...

Two Falcons on view at 15.15 but then they flew off before I could get a sdcreen shot.

Anonymous said...

One Falcon is on the tower. I haven't been looking at the webcams because I thought it would not be possible to see anything and only discovered by accident that one can see the birds from time to time. I haven't seen them do anything really interesting but just the same it is nice to see them.

Slumpy said...

Tiercil on tower, Falcon on left and right hand platform cameras, preening.

Mo Cole Belper said...

Saturday 2.20pm..... Mr and Mrs P having lunch on the tower.... how romantic... x