Friday, 21 March 2014

A Welcome to Teachers...and news about our new School Resources Boxes!

With a big teacher Eco-conference taking place today (21st) in Derbyshire, organised by the county council, we are very pleased to welcome new teachers to this project - both to the blog and the web cams. We think the project is a great resource for schools and are keen for many more to get involved. Email us at peregrines@derbyshirewt.co.uk if you would like more information about what we do and what we can offer schools. (See below for an update about other sites' eggs).
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For almost a year now, Ian Layton, our Engagement Officer, has been working with a small group of teachers and the county council's environmental studies services manager, Georgina Greaves, to prepare a number of resource boxes for loaning to schools both in Derbyshire and in Derby City.
These are now ready and are FREE for local schools - indeed several have been 'booked' already.
Any teacher wanting to find out more about how to loan a box should email environmentalstudies@derbyshire.gov.uk  PROVIDED their school is outside Derby city but inside the county. If you are in Derby city please email peregrines@derbyshirewt.co.uk to enquire about the boxes for use with city schools.
A resource box displayed....
Each box contains:

  • a plastic peregrine, 
  • a replica egg, 
  • a squeaky toy peregrine (with a totally life-like call), 
  • teacher work sheets, 
  • laminated photos of the birds, their nesting season and their prey 
  • three CDs and a DVD about the birds.

Already a few schools have taken advantage of the project, its web cams and blog to teach children across the whole curriculum - and to engage them with our brilliant birds.
This by Ellen from Becket School in Derby
One infant school regularly allows its children (under supervision) to make comments to the blog about what they have been seeing on the web cams (we had one from Green Class at Brigg Infants only the other day!). And the children there and at other schools regularly draw peregrines and learn and write about them too.
From Holmesfield Infants in Dronfield
So, what's not to like? Do get in touch as soon as you can to secure a box for your school!
A local school visits a Watch Point.....

Nick B and Ian Layton (Peregrines and People Engagement Officer)
Ps. If you want someone from the project to visit your school (for a negotiable fee) please get in touch to discuss the details.

Egg Update 21st March: as we wait for our first egg in Derby, we can report that eggs have been laid a several other urban peregrine nests. The first egg was laid at a site in London and  already this pair has a full clutch and incubation has begun. Now there are also  eggs at Aylesbury, Sheffield, Norwich, Nottingham to name but four! 
The Aylesbury nest courtesy of sueperegrino

In Derby our first ever egg was laid on 23rd March 2009 so our pair are a bit later than many others. But last year, by laying late and avoiding the unseasonal snow, the Derby birds gained a definite advantage. So early laying isn't necessarily a 'good' thing......more on this topic later.


Useful teaching video: this new video, focusing on peregrines in the SW of England, provides a useful introduction and might suit teachers wanting to put our city birds in a historical context:
  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=76uMd4vtJSU (with apologies for the earlier error).

Ps. The hits counter has been reset by Nick M to record the number of hits since 1st January 2014....roughly 32,000 so far. (2.6million since we went online in 2007!) More about the project stats in a future post!

41 comments:

Sue Peregrino said...

Welcome, Derbyshire teachers. You're here at such an exciting time. The eggs should start arriving any day now, wouldn't it be great if today was the day! First thing this morning, one bird (the female? please somebody tell me which and how to tell the difference) is standing like a statue on the edge of the platform.

Phoebe said...

Welcome all the new teachers and children, if you haven't been here before you ar in for a real treat.

@ Sue Peregrino
I think you could be right the falcon looks like she means business today. She is in the scrape digging and re-arranging the stones and circling. I am convinced it will be an early egg for the pair. My initial thought were the 27th.

Kate said...

Indeed a huge welcome to Teachers and children, how wonderful that you all want to become involved with the Peregrine and Wildlife, that is so important to us all.
The Derby project Team really do go beyond their care in looking after these Birds in the Wild, and hope you will enjoy the egglaying and continued progress, we will look forward to your comments.
Enjoy!!!!!

Linda Emmans said...

Has anyone else got a changes view on camera 2? Instead of 4 pictures there's only one. Am I doing something wrong. Mum to be has been on the ledge and circling on the nest for a while now. Hope she lays her eggs soon. The Nottingham Mum doesn't look amused at being watched. She seems to be sitting on her eggs with face to the wall! :-)
Linda

Nick B (DWT) said...

Hi Linda: the change of view was deliberate (we can't show both I'm afraid) because we hope that folk may see the birds on the ledge above the nest where in past years, mating has been observed (poor birds, no privacy at all!).
They don't usually mate on the nest itself so we thought we'd have a change of view.
If people strongly prefer the quad view then I'm sure they'll let us know.
Nick B (DWT)

Kate said...

Thanks for update Nick.
Falcon on the edge of the tray at the moment.
Are you working on Cam Three??
As I see a list but no Pic....

Lorraine said...

The falcon was on the tower all night last night and is settled on the scrape ledge at tune-out tonight. There is no doubt that she is spending a great deal of her time close to the nest area lately. She often appears a bit ruffled, with her feathers slightly bristled, as if a little uncomfortable. Perhaps these are all good indicators that an egg will be produced any day now.

Lorraine said...

The mother is absent from the Notts scrape just now, so can clearly see there are now three eggs in her nest !

Nick B (DWT) said...

Hi Kate: re. the strange screen you saw - yes, work is going on behind the scenes to get the necessary IT sorted out. This is not something that the project team is doing, rather it is the council and its IT provider SERCO on whom we depend.
Obviously we hope that they will be able to get things back up and running asap so that we can reconnect to the live streaming and audio feeds but we are in their hands. We are sure they are doing their utmost to get us going again and, remember, this is a free service to us which has worked very well since 2007 when the first cameras were fitted.....
Nick B (DWT)

Nick B (DWT) said...

A fine, if cold, Saturday morning in Derby with a big football match today between Derby and Notts Forest (the falcons might just be able to hear the crowd who knows!)
If you should see mating occur on the ledge above the nest do please let us know by posting a comment.
mating occurs frequently in the period before and during egg laying - and often on that top ledge.
Nick B (DWT)

Caroline said...

Just seen both falcons at different spots on the cathedral in the sunshine via the different cameras - the thrill never goes away! My love of birds goes back to childhood so the work you are doing in schools is magnificent. Thank you to everyone in the project, Council and Serco for your hard work one way or another. Exciting times ahead! All the best.

Caroline said...

I was so excited to see the birds again, I commented before reading that there are eggs at Aylesbury already. You must be thrilled Sueperegrino!

Craig said...

Morning Derby, long time no type to.

Looks like your camera time is ahead by about 8 minutes.

13:29 Falcon standing on the edge of the scrape looking out over Derby, nice view I admit. Looks slightly breezy.

13:33 Tercel turns up with some food, Falcon tucks in. Can't tell what it is, rather small, could just be part of a bird?

13:36 Falcon takes her meal to the edge of the box.

13:38 Falcon flies off with her meal. There appears to be a bird hiding at the rear of the tower, not sure which one, didn't change cameras in time to see it fully.

Nottingham's Falcon is laying on some little eggs, earlier than Derby again this year, not been keeping a close eye on them, how many eggs do they have now? Last time I checked they had 2.

13:56 looks like the Tercel has arrive back at the scrape, keeps looking up the tower, Falcon must be up there.

14:01 He has moved on to the scrape, digging.


14:08 Looks like I've got to make tracks, catch you later. P.s. Its raining over her in Nottingham (as you may see from the camera) hope its not on its way to you.

Phoebe said...

@ Craig, welcome back!

Thanks for the update today. Notts has 3 eggs as far as I am aware.

We have the tiercel I think it is? sat on the scrape edge. The falcon is not in view.

Lorraine said...

Craig - I can confirm that Notts had THREE eggs on view at 2.18am this morning.

C'mon Derby Mum - catch up soon !

Phoebe said...

The falcon is in the scrape sitting quite still.

I think because the scrape cam has been moved higher we see more foreshortening so harder to tell which bird is which at the moment. We will undoubtedly get used to it.

Now she is sat on the ledge.

Linda Emmans said...

That nest looks very well prepared and ready this morning. Linda

Paul. said...

I had the privilege of being online when the Nottingham falcon laid her first egg.March 16th 12.35am...It took all of 10 seconds.

Phoebe said...

The falcon just landed on the scrape, tiercel was in the hollow, more head bowing then the Tiercel flew off and the falcon is now scraping at the hollow. She looks in egg laying mode!

Phoebe said...

Oh that was a false alarm. Falcon is now sat on the ledge.

Caroline said...

Preening this afternoon and now feeding on the edge of the scrape.

Kate said...

Just checked in and she certainly sitting in position for egg laying.
So will tonight be the night????

Phoebe said...

I think the first egg is imminent!

Anonymous said...

Hi Phoebe
Certainly agree cam 2 we should be able to see soon, thought a few mins ago she had layed, but not quite.

Anonymous said...

Hi Phoebe, watching but can't tell if she has laid an egg. The clock is moving but she is not. Wish there was a live stream.

Kate said...

Nail biting moments, ahead, yes such a pity full set of cams not working, but we are so fortunate to have a closer cam on stream two at this moment.
Our Two Nicks work so hard in trying to accommodate the WWW..
Will have to wait for morning to see any updates.
Sorry My reply earlier to Phoebe cam out as anonymous.
Kate

Phoebe said...

Hi Kate

Very nail biting but this happens every year. Because they are later than most gets us on the edge of our seats not knowing when it will be. She is looking ready to lay so maybe an egg by morning. Don't think she had laid yet.

Peregrine Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Yes, it's looking exciting this evening, isn't it? Hopefully I've given you the best view possible under the circumstances. And it does look like she's been getting ready to lay since 8pm this evening.

We still have two completely separate IT issues to resolve before the live a/v streams come back. I'm not directly in control of either of these, as they both require the Council's IT team involvement. But we were working on one of them on Friday, and are awaiting approval from a monthly firewall security meeting for the second.

But I do apologise for not getting these resolved earlier on in the year. Unfortunately I have been completely tied up in recent months with family illness & bereavement, and was also heavily involved in a campaign to save a Local Nature Reserve from development. I am very grateful to Nick Brown for taking some of the load off my shoulders.

As there are probably quite a few new teachers watching our webcams, I guess they might score me as 'could do better' I'll try!
Nick Moyes
Derby Cathedral Peregrine Project

Mo cole said...

Nick you are first class.... Mo and Pete x

Caroline said...

So sorry to hear that you've had a difficult time, Nick M. All the best. I'd give Gold Stars to all the volunteers! We've still got an excellent view considering the fire. She's disappeared again but could be egg-citing... sorry, I know that these puns have all been done before but it remains special every year...

Linda Emmans said...

Nick I'm sorry too. I hope things are looking better for you now. I think you all do fantastically well. Btw looking now and no eggs at almost 10pm. Linda

Nick B (DWT) said...

Here are the egg laying dates at Derby:
2006 - first year - no cameras so no date for that year tho' we know it was late April sometime.
2007- 3/4
2008 - 28/3
2009 - 23/3 (earliest ever)
2010 - 24/3
2011 - 2/4
2012 - 29/3
2013 - 3/4
2014 - ?
Every year she has laid four eggs apart from the first year when she laid three.
Nick B (DWT)

Phoebe said...

Nick B thanks for the previous dates.

She was certainly trying out the hollow for size earlier, but a cold night in store so maybe she will wait 'til sunrise.

That picture is better, well it was just... The focus is much sharper. Who is that?

Nick Moyes, you do have done this project proud. Sorry to hear of your difficult times. Thanks for still helping here. You are a star!

Kate said...

Morning all
Doh!! empty scrape this morning.She was certainly having a good try last evening, like any of us who have children can empathise with her, as we know that feeling so well,when the due date is imminent ( is it time?)Ha!!! all will be revealed soon am sure.
Nick M, you do absolutely sterling work in trying to juggle as you are involved with, and when personal issues add to your load, you still think the viewing public, and Nick B you are a wonderful reliable part of the equation,Thank you and Bless you both.
Kate

Kate said...

Typical,when I switched back to Cam, lovely missus back in laying mode,
Kate

Kate said...

around 07.52 Teircel on the ledge and missus on the scrape..

soon though they both fly off. grr!!
'why are weeee waiting ' ha!!!!
Kate

Caroline said...

A 'no egg yet' morning but the sunshine and shadows show the depth of the hollow well. Nick's list of dates is a reminder that this project and others like it enable important data to be collected - and often thanks to sharp-eyed people here too. Speaking of data, it is amazing to read on the blog that the webcams have had 2.6 million hits - Nick & Nick must wonder at times what they began!

Peregrine Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Just a note to inform you that Webcam Stream 3 is working again this morning, though may be a bit flaky for a while.
Our thanks to Mark from SERCO for sorting this out, and we hope to have Stream 4 live fairly soon, too, once the necessary firewall change has been made.

Caroline said...

Just seen mating on the corbel below the scrape! Got a not v good screen grab which I'll try and upload although perhaps others here got a better shot just now? I was thinking that thanks to people's help here, not only have I learnt how to get screen grabs but I know that when the falcon is sitting on the corner corbel and keeps levelling her body then she might be encouraging a visit from the tiercel. If Nick hadn't mentioned that mating often occurs between egg-laying then I might not have been looking out for it. Others here are more skilled observers but isn't it wonderful how much we all learn by watching? Thank you Derby Peregrine Project :)

Kate said...

Thank you once again Nick M and Mark from Serco, purely for info,Stream Three was buffering for ages then the message sorry having difficulty etc.
It must be so difficult trying to keep everything running tickety boo, but honestly appreciate everyone's effort( including our Birds)
Kate

Kate said...

really trying this morning, round and round with checking underneath