Monday, 7 June 2021

An empty nest

 It looks as if our two remaining juveniles have fledged earlier this morning (7th June). Thanks to those of you who posted comments earlier.
A check yesterday morning showed the two on the nest and the two parents above them, calmly sitting watching so we felt sure the third chick would have still been on the top of the tower.
We will try to get reports from the spot during the day but if one comes to ground someone will report it for sure. The police have been alerted so that if a member of the public reports seeing one we will get a call. Similarly, the Cathedral staff are aware of the situation.

Photo taken two days ago by 

If you have enjoyed watching these wonderful birds this year and haven't done so yet, please make a donation by clicking on the 'Donate' tab on the blog. Or click here . Many thanks.

The Project Team

Saturday, 5 June 2021

More pre-fledging photos

Dave Farmer (of took some great photos of the remaining juveniles today (we can hardly call them chicks now can we?). There was plenty of wing flapping going on apparently!
Here are some:

That's a very big wing stretch! Photo: Dave Farmer (

Just a few bits of fluff to remove and I'm off! Photo: 

Best of pals it seems.....Photo: 

The project team

Thursday, 3 June 2021

Ready, steady, go

 The three youngsters are on the verge of fact one of them (044) was either pushed off the platform, fell off or tried to fly off on Tuesday. It's rescue is related in the previous blog post - please scroll down to read about it.


Today (3 June) photographer Dave Farmer took these great photos of one of the two youngsters remaining in the nest platform. Antony Pooles also visited the cathedral today and commented that it was running along the edge of the platform and flapping its wings. So it should make its maiden flight in the next couple of days.
Thanks to Dave and Antony for your help/photos:

Photo by 

Web cam watchers will probably be the first to notice that two becomes one in the platform but beware...sometimes a youngster can climb up out of view of our cameras.....
If one does come to ground someone will notice it and report it to the cathedral or the police and they will give us a call and we will catch it and return it to the top of the tower.
hopefully they will fledge safely.....and the one on the top will be successful second time around!

The Project Team

Ps. There's a link to the recent webinar on the previous blog post reached by scrolling down....

Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Quickest peregrine rescue ever (and a link to the recent webinar)!

It's not often that a peregrine chicks waits patiently to be rescued. But that's how it looked to us last night.

Around 6pm yesterday, an eagle-eyed webcam watcher reported one of our peregrine chicks had fallen from the nest platform, above the cathedral's nave roof. The news soon filtered through to the Project Team and we contacted the only people who could give us access to Derby Cathedral after hours - the bell-ringers. 

As luck would have it, when we called our contact they were all in the middle of an online virtual bell-ringing session. One of them, George, kindly offered to cycle in to town to open up the Cathedral Tower.

20 minutes later we were inside the  Clock Room. where we discovered the fallen chick had managed to flutter up to the window, and was effectively 'looking in'. On opening it, she remained in place and, with the help of a handy broom found nearby and placed strategically behind here, she was prompted inside and down into a large cardboard box.

She was a female, ringed 044, and looked healthy and strong, with hardly a sign of down on her, and both her wings seemed OK. Our choices were to take her to a falconer or vet to care for her, or release her onto the top of the cathedral tower, into the (hopeful) care of the adults who raised her. With her advanced development, we decided her best chances were to be left on the top of the tower for her parents to feed and to encourage to fly.

We carried her to the top of the Cathedral, where George gently tipped the box sideways to encourage her out. She seemed reluctant to leave, and then stood there hissing gently at us if we got too close.

NickB encouraged her to move, and we were pleased to watch her flap her way across the tower top. Her wings seemed strong, and so we left 044 alone to be tended by her parents. 

Our thanks to George, and our apologies  to all the bell-ringers for interrupting their virtual training session.

If you missed last week's hour-long webinar all about the project you can now watch it on Youtube at your leisure.
The link is 

Saturday, 29 May 2021

Growing up fast!

 The three chicks are developing their feathers and losing their white fluff. Before long they will be as big and as heavy as their parents and they will be exercising their wings too!
This video by Wendy Bartter was made on 30th May:

And Dave Farmer took this photo on 27th of one of the chicks looking out on the big wide world beyond its nest:

A chick views the world beyond its nest. Photo: 

BTW, Thursday's webinar was attended by almost 100 people and probably more since several people will have viewed it using one registration.
It seemed to go well and will be available on the wildlife trust's Youtube channel sometime next week.
For those who missed it, a link will appear here on this blog when one is available.

Meanwhile if you have been enjoying watching the web cams this year you might consider supporting the project by making a donation towards its costs?
Apart from 2012-15 when we had a lottery grant, the project has been entirely funded by kind donations from web cam watchers and people visiting the Watch Points (though there won't be any of those this summer due to covid). 
Check down the right hand side of this blog and click on 'Donations' for a secure way to make a donation directly to the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. All monies are ring fenced just for this project.

Many thanks.

The Project Team

Monday, 24 May 2021

Webinar about this project

This Thursday evening (27th May) at 7.30 pm there will be an online talk (webinar) about the Derby Cathedral Peregrine Project since its inception back in 2006.

Topics to be covered include how rare peregrines were and why, how the nest platform and cameras were installed, how the peregrines adopted the new 'des res' quickly, the extensive media coverage, the Watch Points, how the birds have faired over the years, how and why the chicks are ringed, what the birds feed on and finally the on-going problems that peregrines face elsewhere.

It is free but you do have to register for it here.

You don't need zoom installed on your device. Just click on 'open in browser' and that's it!

The Platform Going up!

100 folk have registered already. There is no limit on numbers.
You'll receive an email before it starts reminding you about it and giving the link.

Our newish male Peregrine. Photo: g.d.fotos

We look forward to seeing you soon!

The Project Team

To read about the ringing of the chicks last week, please scroll down this blog.


Tuesday, 18 May 2021

Ringing the chicks completed successfully

 Using a (rare) sunny and dry morning today, the three chicks were ringed by licenced ringer Dave Budworth and Chloe Pritchard. 


            The female falcon circles round but soon lands on Jurys Inn to watch proceedings!

Nick Moyes abseiled down from the top of the tower to the nest platform, put the chicks in a rucksack which he then lowered to the nave roof.

                 Nick Moyes prepares to abseil down from the top. Photo: Kayleigh Wright

The chicks were taken inside where they were ringed and weighed.

The two bigger chicks, weighing in at around 900 grams are likely to be females while the smaller bird, at 800 grams is likely to be a male.

The chicks in the red rucksack are lowered down prior to ringing
                                         Note the abseiler at the nest platform above......

                                    Chick prior to ringing. Photo Kayleigh Wright

                              DWT Trainee Kayleigh Wright holds a chick while its sibling is ringed.

                                    A chick waits quietly before being ringed

                    An orange colour ring is fixed on the left leg.....note the size of the feet and talons!

Prey remains found included a blackbird, starling, lapwing and jackdaw among others.......

WEBINAR 27th MAY: to register for the free webinar about this project next Thursday evening (27th at 7.30) go to  

The Peregrine Project Team
Note: The project is financed solely by private donations. If you are enjoying watching the web cams please consider making a contribution, small or large, to our (albeit relatively small) project costs. There's a link on the blog home page. Every donation will be acknowledged by one of the team.