Wednesday, 21 May 2014

WatchPoints and Chick-Ringing 2014

The 2014 Watch Points start this Saturday, 24th May.
This year Ian Layton and his band of keen volunteers are also running quite a number of Watchpoints during the weekday for booked parties.
The following dates have so far been scheduled. Others may be added later. Check the WatchPoint Tab at the top of our homepage for changes to these details.

SAT MAY 24th      PUBLIC WATCH

SAT MAY 31st  PUBLIC WATCH POINT
           
SAT JUNE 7th   PUBLIC WATCH POINT 
                           (Incl visit from Bosnian YP) 

SAT JUNE 14th  PUBLIC WATCH POINT

SAT JUNE 21st  PUBLIC WATCH POINT

SAT JUNE 28th PUBLIC WATCH POINT 

SAT JULY 5th   PUBLIC WATCH POINT


All Watchpoints are free and start around 10.30am on Derby's Cathedral Green, and usually run until about 1pm or later if there's lots of activity. They may not run  if the weather is foul.

Derbyshire Wildlife Trust volunteers with telescopes will be on hand to talk to anyone wanting to see or learn more about the city's amazing peregrines.

The Green is the pleasant, grassy area at the rear of Derby Cathedral which gives excellent views of the peregrine nest platform. See Map

Watch Points are entirely free, though if you enjoy your time with us (and viewing the birds online), a donation is always welcome! The Lottery grant that we have helps us pay for the project but we are still required to raise over £1000 each year ourselves as match funding.

Ringing the Chicks
The webcams may look a little bit odd for a while tomorrow evening as we are scheduled to ring the three surviving peregrine chicks. This involves an abseil from the top of the tower down to the nest platform. The chicks will then be carefully placed into a bag and gently lowered to Anthony, waiting on the nave roof below. Ant is a licenced ringer who has put coloured rings on the legs of all our chicks (except for one year) since they first nested here back in 2006. As always, we inform the police in advance, lest a keen webcam watcher somewhere thinks they should report suspicious activity at the nest.
If all goes well, the chicks should be back in the nest within twenty minutes or so. It's a real privilege to be able to pick up the young birds and lower them down for ringing, and then return them unharmed to their nest again. As always we're pleased to welcome a few invited guests in to watch the ringing first hand. This year, amongst others, we welcome Mark on behalf of SERCO who generously provide the real technical support of ensuring our webcams are configured correctly to the internet, and Simon who will be off-duty, but is one of Derbyshire Constabulary's Wildlife Liaison Officers with a keen interest in Derby's amazing peregrines.  




19 comments:

Jo said...

Is there a rough time in place for the ringing this evening? I enjoyed watching last year!

AnnieF. said...

Just caught the end of a noisy feed - little one managed to filch a morsel from between parent's claws, then begged for more & got it. Largest flapped its wings meaningfully, then staggered off to the far (slate) side; middle one turned to the wall & squirted, just missing the remaining food. Titch flapped its wings, fell flat on its face. Tried again, same result. Afternoon nap now, I think (them, not me ... or maybe ...).

Lorraine said...

Oh Annie, that was a great post - very funny and the chuckle did me good!
Hope to catch the ringing of the chicks which I understand will be sometime later today.

Kate said...

Well Mama certainly herding the chicks into the corner, does she sense something?????

christinr said...

Hi nick is ringing going ahead with weather as it is? From Christine

Lorraine said...

Just rushed home and really chuffed I haven't missed the ringing. Hope the cams allow us a peek at the procedure. It won't be until the chicks are in the hand that their actual size will amaze us - I expect even little "Titch" will look big !

Tracey Bell said...

Watching the starting process of ringing the chicks. Its all go. not sure if its mum or dad bird but she is aware of whats going on and is not happy. Fasinating to watch.

Lorraine said...

19.00 - Think it's started - falcon showing sign of something going on above her.

Linda said...

3 very indignant chicks returned to the scrape safely ringed. The brave man who returned them was very gentle.

Tracey Bell said...

WOW!!! the ringing of the chicks was brilliant to watch. Thanks Nick for the conversation and i did smile and say "Cheese" when you took the picture of the webcam. Hehehe. Glad chicks are back all safe now and mum had retuned.

Anonymous said...

Mum straight back on the scrape but not amused

Linda said...

Very unamused. she seems to be looking around not sure if its for danger - ie the guys who abseiled down or for Dad. Chicks are subdued and tucked up in the corner now. Be interested to see if they are boys or girls.

AnnieF. said...

Both adults are with the chicks, making sure they're ok & looking up & around in case of any more intruders. A successful ringing, well done chaps!

AnnieF. said...

Ah, a feed. That'll settle them down for the evening.

Anonymous said...

But the little chick didn't get any!

Julia said...

Enjoyed watching the ringing but felt a little nervous at the same time. Relieved after both parents had returned and chicks had had a feed and settled down. Do wish they wouldnt eat feet though

Lorraine said...

It was so exciting my heart was racing, not only for the chicks, but also for the nerve required by Nick!
Well done and many thanks to him.



















Julia said...

Yes Lorraine Nick was brilliant. Loved his " say cheese " moment

Anonymous said...

Why was the collecting bag such a bright frightening colour?
Would the colour be a problem to the chicks? The huge staring human face on it made by the fancy labels,, surely wasn't very nice!
Nick was so tender with the babies.
An amazing experience for us all. Thank you for taking us up there.