You can see where folk are watching from by scrolling down the blog until you see a world map on the right hand side. Double click on the map and each red dot shows where people are watching. there's also a list of the most recent hit locations and another of all the countries we've been 'hit' by. A good way to spend a few moments as we wait for the first signs of hatching...and a lesson in geography for any youngsters too.
Update 1st May: Wendy Bartter captured this screenshot of the male with the four eggs last night about 8pm:
|Male with the eggs captured last night by Wendy Bartter|
to whom many thanks.
As we approach the time when we hope the eggs will hatch, we'll probably see our female get more and more fidgety as she begins to hear the chicks calling inside their egg shells. Perhaps she knows that hatching is getting close anyway....
We would expect the first egg to hatch early next week...but exactly when remains to be seen of course.
The egg shells either get partly eaten or eventually just crushed by parental feet. They disappear quite quickly.
Meanwhile chicks at other urban nests have hatched already and are growing day by day.
Wendy Bartter captured some remarkable behaviour in the urban nest at Sheffield which is well worth watching. See here. Thanks Wendy for sharing.
My hunch is that this could be the first time this behaviour has been captured on film anywhere in the world - but time will tell. I'm awaiting to hear from some peregrine experts to whom I've sent the link so let's see what they say.
Meanwhile Kate in Devon sent this link to an incident in Devon some years ago - see here.
Sadly the chick in this case didn't survive but the parent made a valiant attempt to rescue it for sure.
Hopefully this very unpleasant cold weather will have passed before our chicks hatch though our birds are such good parents they won't allow any chicks to get cold. The forecast suggests it will be warmer in Derby by Monday. It needs to be, especially for smaller birds which must be struggling to keep their eggs or nestlings warm and fed or to look after already fledged young.
And what about the recently arrived migrant birds like swallows and warblers which depend on a supply of insects? They can stand short spells of cold weather but this one has gone on too long already!
Nick B (DWT)
Ps. If you live near Derby, don't forget to buy your tickets for David Lindo's talk on Urban Wildlife in the Cathedral on June 8th as part of Derby Book Festival. Details are here.
David will include a section on our Derby falcons who he came to see a few years ago. He dedicates a few pages in his book to his visit to Derby on which he was accompanied by Nick Moyes and me. For more on his book, Tales from Urban Jungles, see here.