Sunday, 2 January 2022

HNY to our peregrine pair & blog followers

 As the new year dawns, our peregrines will be beginning to sense the oncoming breeding season and, should the mild weather continue, it might be worth checking the webcams for any signs of display.
Let us know if you see any!

Derby Cathedral as seen from the old Assembly Rooms car park

Meanwhile, Derbyshire Wildlife Trust, which manages this project, is advertising for a one year Engagement Trainee post to help with this project but mainly to try to protect peregrine nest sites elsewhere in the county, for example, nests in disused quarries which are very vulnerable to the theft of eggs and especially chicks for sale to the lucrative Middle East market.

To find out more see:

The Project Team

Monday, 29 November 2021

 A touch of snow this morning in Derby (29th November) - but peregrine life seems unaffected with the nest platform being on the East facing side of the tower.....
Screenshot courtesy of Kate in Devon.

The Project Team

Saturday, 7 August 2021

Hen Harrier Day 2021

Today August 7th is Hen Harrier Day 2021.
You can watch the programme that went out this morning, hosted by Chris Packham and Megan McCubbin here:
Hen Harrier Day 2021 | Hosted by Chris Packham & Megan McCubbin - YouTube 

Hen harriers, peregrines, goshawks, red kites, golden eagles, buzzards and other raptors are still being killed illegally on the moorlands of the UK and the perpetrators are getting away with it.
This summer just a single pair of hen harriers nested in the Peak District - see:
Four rare hen harrier chicks fledge in Derbyshire | Derbyshire Wildlife Trust 

We suspect that some of our young peregrines from Derby will have wandered up onto our moorlands and met an untimely death up this issue does affect us here in urban Derby.
Do please watch the programme!

And also watch the webinar that went out on 1st August on the same subject:
Hen Harrier Day Online - 1st August - YouTube .
This one was aimed at families and features David Lindo with a clip by Diane Gould of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust.

The Project Team

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