Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Mystery eggs cause extreme eggcitement

Alerted by devoted American web cam watcher, Isabelle B. Leevitornot, Derby peregrine project workers were amazed to see two more eggs suddenly appear overnight in the nest, less than 24 hours since a second egg was laid.
Screengrab of the four eggs which are attracting international attention
Nick Brown for the project said:
"Female peregrines take two day or more days to form an egg. Since she only laid the second egg mid-morning yesterday (Monday 31st March), she cannot possibly have produced these two new eggs without outside assistance. The only possibility is that both the male and an intruding, mystery third bird have each laid an egg, probably trying to make up time on peregrines elsewhere in the UK which are all well ahead of Derby, with most already sitting on four eggs by now.
Nick said:
"Obviously this is very eggciting news and quite unprecedented  - though a similar thing happened once before in Egsville USA. This would be the first occurrence in the UK and in Europe too.
We know that some species of male fish can change sex and lay eggs, so it's not entirely impossible that peregrines could do likewise. And it would also prove that the strange intruding third bird was a female."
The members of the project team are scouring the literature now to try to validate these observations and find other cases.
Nick Brown
April 1st 2014
Ps Egged on by the opportunity this provides to further our scientific knowledge, Nick Moyes is abseiling down from the top of the tower now to remove the two extra eggs for analysis - so if you log on and only see two eggs, that will be the reason. There is only one day in the year when such activity is permitted under government lie-cence. And today is the day.


Green Class said...

The peregrine has layed two or three eggs but another female has also layed an egg. We think it is crazy to have one female and a another female has gone in the same scrape. The male has bin sitting on eggs. What will happen to the extra eggs? We are exited about all the eggs. The female peregrine might think they are all her eggs.

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

Hi Green Class. So glad you read our very odd post about the eggs. We don't want to confuse anyone, so do ask your teacher to check the date today.

It is important to understand that just because something is on the internet, there may be times when you have to ask "Is this really a true story?". Perhaps you could discuss in class what you think of this one. Let us know what you all decide.

Nick M and Nick B
1st April 2014

AnnieF. said...

@Nick B. You've been very naughty confusing Green Class like that!

Avril Dunn said...

I noticed that the mystery eggs are a slightly more chocolate brown than the ones laid by the Derby female.

Nick B said...

Very sorry Green Class.....we promise we won't do it again!
And do make sure you read and understand Nick M's comment about not always believing what you read - and the fact that the date is 1st April!
It is a valuable lesson actually....even if you and your teacher may be a bit annoyed that you were 'fooled'!
Nick B

Julie said...

I think you insult our intelligence Mr B :-) But nice try!!!

Green Class said...

we can't belive you tricked us!
That was very naughty of you.
We have seen to eggs now! They
are a redish brown colour!

Phoebe said...

I only just logged on and read the news!

Haha nice one!

Phoebe said...

For the school children. There are a few ways to check out if what you read is really true. One is to click on the picture of the eggs and look at the date on the top, in this case the picture was taken in 2009 but was still April 1st. Another is to check out the place mentioned in USA, this one is Egsville, there is no such place.

Something for you to ponder.

Lorraine said...

Well, I've just tuned in and you can imagine how the 4 egg post was right up my street!

At first sight my jaw dropped, then I inspected my new glasses and thought "I should have gone to Specsavers" I then went through the run of CHOL, LOL before a new one emerged... HOL ( howled out loud! )

Enjoyed the "yoke" very much you perishers !

Caroline said...

Yep, I fell for the yokey joke for about 30 seconds too and then remembered the other message I had earlier today about scientists mapping Genome of the Garden Gnome with the help of Sherlock Gnomes... though we could do with Sherlock solving the mystery of the third peregrine visiting Derby ;)

MaryT said...

That was a brilliant April Fool joke. Had me believing it just for a little while!!

Anonymous said...

I believed it for a while because i didn't read it properly, you naughty people you, v.good, easily conned, not quite with it today older person, lol, ( ;

Lorraine said...

Haven't seen anything out of the ordinary on the Cams today. Egg sitting and change-over's etc., all going smoothly with both birds content and on track.

Phoebe said...

It has been a quiet day today. But tonight the falcon is on the prowl! A nice clear view of her on the tower top. She is looking around quite a lot. She may well go hunting for late night supper. The tiercel as always doing his bit on the eggs.