Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Getting to know you....and where you are!

Following our recent request for people to check the Clustrmap (see 'how to' below), we have had a few comments from people who have (or in one case, haven't) found their red dot on the map.
Yesterday we received this email from Carol C who lives in San Francisco, USA and she has kindly allowed us to let everyone read it:

Having read your post about getting in touch, I wanted to let you know that I am a fan in San Francisco California, USA. As an expat Brit originally from Southport, Lancs, I regularly view sites in the UK and very much enjoy feeling that I am in touch - at least in a cyber sense - with what I still think of as home.

I am a great fan of the Derby website. It is beautifully administered and so informative. I check in at least once a day in the "off" season and enjoy observing the occasional comings and goings of the beautiful falcons. I particularly look forward to seeing the video clips and reading the informative commentaries by your dedicated band of falcon experts.
The cathedral is truly lovely and it is my sincere intention to visit the next time I am home for a visit. Of course in the breeding and fledging season I keep a close watch on the activities of the pair and their offspring, usually in great glee over their activities, occasional in tears--as with this last season.
I am a veteran falcon watcher and keep in close touch with the Indiana falcon website (which I recommend at - however it is the Derby site that is closest to my heart. There is magic in the location, the un-named wildness of the birds and the camaraderie I feel knowing that there are many eyes and hearts in concert with mine. I even enjoy the visits when I see nothing but the lovely English sky and the odd comings and goings of people in what I believe you call "Amen Alley".
Many thanks to you all for the work you do. The many hours of pleasure, the vast store of knowledge you so generously share, the profound sense of awe that I feel each season as nature works her magic have added immeasurably to my life.
Carol C


Thanks also now to Adrian L who lives in Northern Colorado and who emailed to say that, like Carol C, he too is a expat who used to live in Burton on Trent and also in Derby for awhile. He says how much he enjoys watching the web cams and reading the blog. The web cams also allow him to see what the Derby area weather is like - he still has relatives living here!

How to see the Clustrmap: Do look at the blue Clustrmap image, well down on the left hand side of this blog page. Just click on the map to enlarge it  - like this.  Click again to zoom in to your own continent and, if you are following the blog from overseas where dots are widely spaced, you may be able to see the red dot which represents you! The UK map can be enlarged even further with another click, so you may find yourself here, too. The current month's map also shows how many blog readers come from the UK compared to further afield, whilst archived visitor maps from previous months shows just how popular our blog becomes during the peregrine breeding season. Of course, this map only shows readers of this blog. It doesn't count  webcam viewers, so you'll need to check the counter on our webcam pages for those figures.
Do please email us and let us know exactly where you are - or post a comment on the blog if you wish to remain anonymous.
Please send your email to

Note: If you read this blog from within a corporate network, there's a tiny chance that our visitor map could be greyed out and inaccessible to you. If this occurs, the problem will lie with your own company's web filtering program, as we found out here in Derby, though we managed to resolve this with the help of Derby's IT people, Websense, and the top man from Clustrmaps (thanks Marc).

The photo shows one of this year's juveniles and is by Andy Byron
Nick B (DWT)


Terry, Herts UK said...

Wow! Carol, you should post more often! :)

Helen said...

@Carol .... a lovely email, which I enjoyed reading very much, thank you.

Craig said...

Thank to Carol C for the link, the Derby webpage, of course, needs updating but I loved watching the Regency webcam vids.

I have e-mailed in but didn't receive a reply... but given that it was a funny Halloween e-card and nothing serious to the point, I'm not surprised :)

Craig, Nottingham

Erica said...

It's lovely to read the mail from overseas watchers and to see where in the world there are people keeping their eyes on Derby.

Phoebe said...

Hi everyone, I haven't been on for a while - lost my internet for a month. Not seen a peregrine for what seems like an age and they always elude me when I visit the cams. Hoping to see one soon.

Phoebe said...

Oh, and I have a bluetit roosting in my camera nestbox, comes in every night to sleep, he's an early sleeper and was in at 4:10pm today. A first for me as the boxes have only been up since February. Hoping there will be a nest.

Terry, Herts UK said...

"The latest figures for 2010 show that 16 birds of prey were poisoned in Scotland, including four golden eagles – the highest number for 20 years – five red kites, two peregrine falcons, one sparrowhawk and one sea eagle. Last year was the second worst on record, the RSPB said."

Scotland are about to introduce new powers, hopefully. Proposed new laws would make grouse moor owners liable for wildlife crimes committed on their estates.

The full article is here.

Anonymous said...

Anyone noticed that the subject of encouraging peregrines has made it into "The Archers"? Characters are objecting to the prospect of bird body parts in the churchyard...

Returning home (northern edge of Allestree) the other day I spotted a bird of prey (not a peregrine, obviously) rising up from the street with what looked like a collared dove in its talons.

Kate (Derby)

Project Member (Derby Museum) said...

The Archers
Following Kate (Derby)'s comment about The Archers programme on BBC Radio 4, you might be interested to learn that the Derby Cathedral Peregrine Project has actually been giving advice to The Archers editorial team over the last few months. - Just background information to help them develop their storyline. We've not mentioned anything as we were sworn to secrecy over this! (Nor can we tell you what the outcome of their deliberations will be)

If listeners could leave a comment telling us of the date of any epidose in which peregrine falcons at Ambridge Churchyard are mentioned, the rest of us can either listen again to the episode or read the online daily synopses here:

Nick M
Derby Museums and Art Gallery

AnnieF. said...

Super view of a peregrine (falcon) facing away from the tower cam, half-profile.

AnnieF. said...

I'm pretty sure it's the falcon, & she's had a thorough preen. It looks quite breezy up there today.

AnnieF. said...

There's one on the nestbox ledge, rhs, looking around.

Phoebe said...

I am not sure what it is I can see in the scrape towards the middle front - it looks like a small bird but whether it is alive and sleeping or dead prey ??

AnnieF. said...

There's a large lump of something in the nestbox, rhs. Can't see any feathers.

Nick B (DWT) said...

One peregrine on Jury's Inn yesterday morning (Sunday) - probably the falcon but her back was turned towards me.
No feathers or other prey remains found under the tower but a few weeks ago I did find the wing of a quail. We've had at least two quail as prey before. This tiny bird is a rarity in Derbyshire and indeed in the UK where it is a very occasional breeder - so it is interesting to find it turning up in Derby.
Further east, in Warsaw city for example, peregrines take many quail in autumn so perhaps the migration south of this species does indeed extend across to the UK but is almost entirely unseen by daytime bird watchers. I did see that one was captureed for ringing at Portland Bird Observatory recently but this is a very rare occurrence (there's a photo of the bird in the hand on their website).
Nick B (DWT)

Green Class said...

We can see a pergin on the platform
bending down eating its brekfast. It has bootful gray and whit fether but it looks a bit wet in the rain. we can see its yellow feet.

Project Member (Derby Museum) said...

Dear Green Class
Thank you for letting us know.

I looked at the cameras the moment you told us, but by then the adult bird had stopped feeding.

Do let everyone know if you see other interesting things. But don't let it stop you doing your other classwork, or I shall get in trouble with your teacher!
Yours sincerely
Nick Moyes
Derby Museum and Art Gallery

Joyce S in Derby said...

Looks like the cameras have frozen at 05:56 November 12th.

AnnieF. said...

Is that a dead bird in the front-right of the nestbox?

Nick B (DWT) said...

On Friday, both adult birds were sitting together on the Jurys Inn sign that faces east....good to know they are both still about.
I was showing them to a local taxidermist who had come to the museum to discuss with Nick M and me the dead juvenile female peregrine which collided with a glass plate on the top of a local block of flats in 2009.
We have some funds towards the cost of getting the bird 'set up' but still need more....any offers?
We would like to use the bird at talks, demonstrations/shows and for educational purposes.
The corpse, still with its numbered BTO and colour rings in place, was still in very good condition and should make an excellent display piece if we can muster the necessary money together.
Nick B

AnnieF. said...

I think I can just make out a peregrine up by the tower cam - its eye is gleaming in the dark.

Anonymous said...

Peregrine on the tower at half past midnight

Gio said...

I'm pretty sure we are many checking almost every day from Italy though we don't post often here. :))

Nick Brown (DWT) said...

Gio: good to know our Derby peregrines have some Italian fans!
Hope it is a bit warmer with you than up here in Derby where the temperature yesterday was minus 12 degrees! Slightly warmer today but not enough to melt the 30+ centimetres of snow!
Keep in touch eh?

Nick B (DWT)