Saturday, 7 June 2014

Getting closer....

As June progresses, so our three chicks get ever nearer the moment that they will launch themselves from the platform and become airborne for the very first time.
However, even though the most advanced of the three has lost 90% of its white fluff, it will be some time yet before fledging occurs.
Before then we can expect days of flapping by our trio......they need to exercise and strengthen their wing muscles before putting them to use.
There will be times when it becomes difficult to see that there are still three chicks on the platform and no doubt we'll get worried emails advising us that one of them has certainly fledged.
Usually the 'fledged bird' suddenly reappears, walking down from some high-up vantage point out of reach of the web cams! However, we will be keen to get reports when, finally, one does indeed fly off from the platform and make its maiden flight should anyone happen to see that.
In four of the previous eight years it has been necessary for us to rescue birds that had come down to the ground. The heavier female chicks are more prone to this than the smaller and lighter males - though one of the latter appeared outside a local pub one morning looking very much as if it was trying to get in!
We took him back to the top of the tower for a second attempt at flying - and he was fine.
Was this young male after a drink or breakfast?
Soon boxed up, he was ready for a second attempt from the tower top
In 2011, a female came down and landed on a ledge on a brick wall nearby. She was quite difficult to catch from the top of a ladder!
What's that guy doing trying to grab my legs?
Meanwhile, while many peregrine nests elsewhere in the UK are now deserted, we have quite a few days left to enjoy watching our chicks.
Our Watch Point events are well underway, organised by Ian Layton. The public ones take place each Saturday morning until the end of June (though today's was rather a washout).
A very local school can walk to the Watch Point
and will be coming again next week
During the week Ian has arranged for several groups to come along to see the birds and, in some cases, enjoy a presentation about them as well.
So this is a busy's all hands to the pump!

New Book - a new book called Urban Peregrines by Ed Drewitt has just been published and we'll be reviewing it on the blog soon. If you just can't wait to buy a copy, you can do so via Pelagic Publishing - .
Get the street-wise title design?

Ed has been very helpful to this project almost since its inception. He's particularly adept at identifying even the smallest and most indistiguished feather for us! His website is at .

Nick B (Derbyshire Wildlife Trust)


kate said...

Thanks Nick
After reading this new blog,
my heart in my mouth as one of the chicks living life dangerously on the edge CHOL:):)
Put On Flikr

Norma Duce said...

Sorry everyone only just worked out how to do screen shots and upload them! But at least some memories!

Lorraine said...

Know what you mean Kate, but they seem to have found control of their huge legs now and have a sense of balance, very funny to watch sometimes and nicely captured in your flickr pics :)

I see the latest update holds no clue as to the sex of the largest chick that was ringed - anyone know?

Lorraine said...

Nice memory images Norma and a good reminder of just how amazingly rapid the transformation of the chicks has been, all in a matter of weeks.

All asleep in the scrape presently.

Jean said...

Watching with heart in mouth as the 2 oldest chicks flap, jump and run around both sides of the scrape. They are also regularly perching along the edges and jumping back into the scrape . The youngest chick looks quite bewildered by it all !!! : )

Kate Bunting said...

Just returned from my annual visit to the Scottish islands - Orkney this time - and can't believe how the chicks have changed in just over a week.
One of our group leaders, a peregrine expert, identified a remote dot in the sky as one. He swears they look as if they're wearing a V-necked Fair Isle jumper!

Julia said...

After watching the chicks hatch and watching them grow I finally took a walk down to the cathedral today. Could see one chick perched on the edge of scrape and could see the falcon a little below the scrape. After a while she flew off then about 10 minutes later flew back and around cathedral making a hell of a racket but what a pleasure to see. Hope to get to the watch on saturday.

Anonymous said...

6.40am Only two juvies in scrape, not sure if one in distance is the third one, or parent- if so hope third juvie is o.k.

Anonymous said...

20.33 Stream 2 bottom right hand picture fledged juvie in shot below scrape then in shot on bottom left hand picture. Definitely fledged juvie 2 others still in scrape 1 adult in shot near drain pipe and the other has just flown off into the distance from scrape.