Saturday, 10 March 2012

More mating moments

Another amazing video came out of Derby Cathedral this morning.
I'd gone to check for interesting recordings, but found none worth retrieving. But just as I was setting the equipment back to standby, before heading down the spiral stairs from the bell-ringing chamber, I heard a loud eee-chupp, eee-chupp  over the live microphone feed.



Switching the camera controls over to the right-hand side of the nest platform, I saw our male standing there, calling. It sounded like a typical welcome, so I wondered if our female was flying in to land. Switching the camera feed back over to the other side, sure enough, there she was on the ledge down below the platform. She had a submissive posture, and looked ready to mate. Switching back, the male had now flown off, so I switched back once more, just in time to see him fly down to the ledge she was on and mate briefly with her before flying off. He soon reappeared on the nest platform, whilst she continued to call to him for some time.

I knew the video recorders were running, so this was clearly going to be a fascinating sequence to have captured.  I edited out the three minute sequence, burnt it to DVD, and headed back down the tower stairs. I couldn't resist nipping out to look back up at the nest ledge from Amen Alley. There I met a couple of visitors to Derby to whom I chatted for a while. I told them they'd just missed seeing the birds mating, and they told me this was their first time visiting Derby, though they'd read our blog and watched the birds via the webcams. Just then, Margaret, one of the Cathedral Quarter rangers came down Amen Alley, and we all stopped to look at the birds and chat about our plans for this coming season. Just then, our male flew down and mated with the falcon once more. We couldn't believe our luck!

Now, we can't promise every visitor to Derby a sight like that, though you can nearly always guarantee to see the peregrines somewhere close by.  What we can do is promise you a warm welcome and the chance to catch up with the news from a host of peregrine watchers who regularly lurk around the Cathedral, binoculars in hand. So, if like our couple this morning, you visit our city for the first time, don't hesitate to ask anyone else you see to point out where our world-famous peregrines are to be found.

51 comments:

Phoebe said...

What a great sequence you caught there! It was a joy to watch... thanks for all your hard work.

Sue Peregrino said...

I wanted to find the write up about the birds making the "ee-chup" calls at mating time but I can't find it. I tried the link "Information for Newcomers" and do you know, that one no longer works. I think it's trying to get to a Derby City Council link that has shifted?

Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Thanks Phoebe.
@ Sue - you've spotted something I missed . . I'll change the link as soon as I find a spare moment.

Always happy to make additions and corrections in response to people's requests - you know us! (Not quite sure which bit about eee-chuppng you referred to, but if I can dig it out for you, I'll let you know. (have you tried the search box at the top of the blog?)

Project Member (Nick M.) said...

@Sue
Try this:
http://derbyperegrines.blogspot.com/search?q=ee-chupp

Audrey (London UK) said...

Thank you for all the work that you put into to keep us informed...and also very happy!!

Phoebe said...

14:42 Falcon is on the scrape ledge rhs and tiercel is on tower above, they seem agitated, possibly another mating abour to happen??

Phoebe said...

A meal is being prepared on the top of the tower. I don't know if it is freshly caught or not but I think the tiercel brought it in.

Caroline said...

Thanks for the latest fantastic mating sequence, Nick! When I clocked on the birds were perched, both silhouetted by a pink sunset. Moving end to the day.

Joy said...

Great news, looks as though we will have some more youngsters

Phoebe said...

Just spotted the tiercel up on the tower looking as though he was eating, the falcon is on the scrape rhs. The tiercel flew down with food which he passed on to her then quickly fled.

Oh I have remembered my password for blogger - at last!

Caroline said...

17.38 Snoozing peregrine on the nest platform after a feed.

Slumpy said...

There appears to be an interloper on the Beleef de lente site. It would seem that another tiercel has turned up and the resident male may have been rejected.

Phoebe said...

Just a few moments ago at 4:05pm there was bowing going on with a peregrine in each side of the scrape, the one on the rhs was bowing much lower than the other then flew off and landed on the top, the one on the lhs moved across and is sitting on the ledge of the scrape on the rhs.

Phoebe said...

A litte bit off topicm but I am thrilled to bits, I have just heard the Blackbird that has been coming to my garden for the last three years. I recognise him because of his song, he copies the sound of my pet ferrets playing/fighting. I have just been watching him in the tree and when he made that sound I knew it was him! The expected lifespan for a Blackbird is 3 or 4 years. I am really thrilled to see him back. He raised at least three chicks last year - a nest in my hedge that I watched.

Sorry to rant on but I am so excited!! :)

Anonymous said...

10pm. Is that an egg?

Phoebe said...

Anon, where are you looking? There is no egg yet. I would think another week before the possibility of an egg.

Mo Cole Belper said...

Morning.... Wednesday 14th March..... Nottingham 1 Derby 0 (and I don't mean football) Well done Nottingham Come on Derby...Mo x

DianeL said...

Nottinham Trent's falons have an egg this morning and it is at least a week eariler than usual. Our falcon has been looking very broody and never been far from the ledge toe last two or three days. Maybe some action here soon!

Anonymous said...

Notts pair have an Egg



Regards Ian (superbrad)

Keith Gilliver said...

My first post but I have just been looking at the Nottingham Peregrine site and they have had their first egg laid in the last 24 hours

Keith Gilliver

Phoebe said...

Wow Notts HAVE got an egg, really early too, let's hope our Derby pair aren't far behind! Well done to Notts.

Nick Brown (DWT) said...

Thanks everyone for alerting us to the Notts egg.
Last year the earliest egg was in Bath - laid on 10th March so this is later than that.
I think the Notts pair are older than our birds and therefore are likely to lay earlier than ours. Generally, the falcon lays earlier the older she gets..though last year, our birds were later by a week for reasons we know not!
Let's see what happens at the cathedral....fingers crossed!
Nick B (DWT)

Caroline said...

Gee, I'm am offline for a day and come back to find that all egg has let loose!

Roll on :)

Joy said...

Peregrin sitting on ledge for quite a while in this rather dull day.

Just looked at Notts Peregrins. Can I please ask why in Derby we can't get streaming like theirs? Is it down to money? Its so good to see things happening all the time if only a lfick of the eye or even breathing.

Phoebe said...

The Right hand camera on the scrape seems to be frozen.

Craig said...

10.25 Head bowing on the scrape.
10.27 Falcon moves over to the right hand side close to the Tiercel. Tiercel flies off.
He goes up to the Tower, I captured the moment of his landing... good picture.

Mo Cole Belper said...

Morning..... Left hand camera frozen....x

Phoebe said...

not sure if my post actually posted just then

Elevenses being had on thoe tower top, falcan ate first now the tiercel is having his fill. I didn't see the food brought in.

The tiercel has since left the top and taken the remains with him.

Nick Brown (wildlife trust) said...

Hi Joy: live streaming is being worked on hard at the moment but is complicated for various technical reasons and will take a while yet to get in place but rest assured we are doing everything we can to get it up and running. The cost implications are probably not huge and can be coped with but the exact amount is not easy to calculate at present.
Nick B (DWT)

Don Newing said...

Another web site worth following is that of the Dyfi Osprey Project in Wales. They aim to have HD video streaming for this year's breeding season. But laying the cable has been a rather boggy experience! See:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O0DP2wqYAZY

Phoebe said...

Both birds have just started bowing in the scrape, one either side.

Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Just to add to Nick Brown's response: One of our new supporters, SERCO, has been most helpful since we approached them whilst developing both ideas and contacts for our funding bid to the Heritage Lottery. As a result, they are this week building us two computers to take our live streams through a third party, and we have hopes for a separate audio stream which will allow for everyone to monitor what's going on at the nest without using up vast amounts of bandwidth with video downloads.

We would have been at this point over a year ago had not circumstances been different - but it's not relevant to go into that here.

We will keep everyone informed of progress as best we can.

Phoebe said...

Thanks for that info Nick M, that is fabulous news! I hope it might be up and running before this season is out. Thanks again for all the hard work!

Phoebe said...

I hope you don't mind me posting this butI have just looked at Notts peregrines and the falcon looks suspiciously like she in in egg laying posture?

Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Of course we don't mind you posting. (As long as it's not too off-topic)
I think you could well be right.
N.

Phoebe said...

Thanks Nick, she could be just cooling the egg but she has been a long time in that position.

I can't wait for ours to start! I think they will be earlier than last year.

Joy said...

Thanks for enlightening me on whats happening I do hope it will be up and running before the finish of this season. We do appreciate all the hard work which goes into this

Hilary, B'ham said...

Fantastic news about Serco and other sponsors getting involved. Sounds like we are getting seriously "high tech". Hope they all know how much we appreciate their support.

Craig said...

Notts have got 2... not sure when the second was laid. Come on Derby. A reminder of last year, Notts had the early start then and both pairs had 4.

Mo Cole Belper said...

Nottingham 2 Derby 0....come on Derby....... x

Audrey (London) said...

Unless I am hallucinating??? is that an egg I see (9.06p.m.). All systems go.........!!

Nick B (DWT) said...

Andrey - sorry, no egg as far as I can see this morning...the gravel is bare as yet! It will happen though...give her time.....
Nick B (DWT)

Phoebe said...

Hehe someone had the same thoughts as me just then. It is getting closer, maybe we will have a Mothering sunday surprise!

Joy said...

No peregrins, the last two days when I have looked I haven't seen a peregrin, hope they are still around.

Nick B (DWT) said...

They certainly are around Joy,no worries.
I saw them both when I walked past on Friday and I saw one on the platform this morning on the nest web cam. When it rains the male often hides away in that little hole in the stonework above the nest.
The Notts birds are older than ours so it's not surprising that they lay a bit earlier.
Nick B (DWT)

Craig said...

09.02 Head bowing courtship on the wall below the scrape.
09.04 Courtship over.

Keith Gilliver said...

Looks like Nottingham 3 Derby 0

Keith Gilliver

Phoebe said...

All seems quiet at the moment. Something I saw on the Notts cam the other day was a mating? I didn't realise that between egg laying they would still do mating?

I have only seen one of 'our' birds today. I am sure it will all start very soon.

jan t said...

Nottingham 3 Derby 0 Norwich 0 Jan (suffolk)ion

Phoebe said...

A nice view of both peregrines to be seen, one on the tower top the other on the scrape.

the scrape close up camera seems to have frozen.

Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Thanks Phoebe
I was just tweeting that the two birds were visible on the webcams - but hadn't noticed the close-up camera had frozen.
'fraid that's my fault - I was fiddling with the video server settings. I'll nip off now and do a reboot, which I hope should solve it.

Nick M.