Thursday, 17 July 2014

Thank you Tony, thank you Ian, thank you all

With our birds safely fledged, it's a good time to thank a few people:
Tony Grantham. Tony was the Head Verger at the Cathedral when we started this project 2005/6). He resigned his post a couple of years ago to spend more time working with his wife, Dawn, on their thriving business importing and selling cutting machines.
Tony was a fantastic help to Nick M and me in those early days. Once he saw the birds himself, he became entirely hooked on them. He opened so many doors for us, both literally and metaphorically, that I doubt the project would have happened at all had he not been there to smooth its passage.
Thanks Tony for all you did for us - without you we'd be nowhere!
Tony helps out when a juvenile comes to ground
Ian Layton
Ian came on the scene early last year when he was appointed as People and Peregrines Engagement Officer for two summers, funded by our HLF lottery grant. Like Tony, Ian quickly adopted the birds and the project. He has made a huge difference both to our engagement of people and to the Watch Points themselves.
Just now we are trying to identify enough money to offer Ian the chance to work with us again in summer 2015. Meanwhile of course, Ian has to earn a living and that may mean he becomes unavailable next summer if he gets a permanent job somewhere. Time will tell.
We'd love to have him back if we can get him - he's been a pleasure to work with!
The likely lad

Our Watch Point volunteers
As usual, our trusty volunteers have turned up come rain, come shine, to help on Cathedral Green. Standing there for three hours and more can be very tiring - so they all deserve our thanks! This year they've been helped by our excellent Rolls-Royce team of graduates and apprentices. More on them later since they continue to work with us until the autumn.
Ian with sight-impaired children from a local school
School at a special Watch Point

Our donors
We have thanked each donor individually as we always do - but they deserve our special thanks because, without them, the project would have floundered long ago. Even with our lottery grant we still need our own income every year since the grant is not 100%. It requires 'match finding' to the tune of over £1000 each year.
If you would like to make a donation - please see the tab at the top of the blog home page which gives advice about how to do it. It is very simple!

Our partners
While the wildlife trust carried the bulk of the work, we would be no where without our partners. The Cathedral staff have been wonderful again, helping in all sorts of ways behind the scenes. We must particularly mention John Armitage, a great help to Ian especially, and Jackie Croft, Cathedral Administrator and Development Manager. Jackie is leaving Derby soon and we will miss her. She helped with the recruitment of Ian and in many different ways has been very supportive of our project. Thanks Jackie, we wish you well for the future!
The Grade One listed tower, now almost 500 years old!
Thanks also to the vergers who tolerated our incursions on their territory throughout the Watch Point season. Special thanks also to verger Matt who stayed late on bird ringing night so as to lock up behind us - much appreciated!
Final thanks to the cathedral office staff (Kim, Irene and Lucille) who booked rooms for us, handled enquiries and much more.
Thanks to Antony Messenger for ringing the chicks for us, as he has done every year since 2006.
Thanks to Serco and the city council's IT team for keeping the cameras up and running. An excellent job you've done! Thanks also to Melanie at Cathedral Quarter for her ideas and support, especially to the RR team.

Our web cam watchers and blog commentators
Last but by no means least, our virtual 'community of watchers and commentators; we'd be so much the poorer without all of you. 280,000 hits since January testifies to the way you've become addicted to our special birds. And over 800 comments so far this year shows how you have chipped in with observations and comments, keeping us on our toes and helping us too by keeping watch when we couldn't.
Brilliant work!

No doubt we've missed a few people....apologies in advance.....but it has been yet another good season and we look forward now to 2015, our tenth anniversary...provided the adult pair play ball and stick around! On that subject, do keep tuning in because our birds will be visible from time to time. We will keep the blog going all year...unlike so many other peregrine sites.
Two juveniles by Colin Pass

Nick Moyes/Nick Brown
Ps Don't forget the Hen Harrier Day Rally on 10th August 'up county'. Details as ever of Mark Avery's blog ...though you may have to hunt about a bit to find the latest updates, posted every Monday at 6pm.


Project Member (Derby Cathedral) said...

I would like to thank both Nicks for their tremendous work on this project and for all they have taught me, not only about the Peregrines, but also about the natural world.
It has been a privilege to work alongside them. Long may the project continue - depending of course on the Peregrines!!!!

Lorraine said...

Here here, and so say all of us!
Just don't know how it would all come together without the two Nicks for sure.

From reading the last few Derby residents post's, I'm glad to hear confirmation that the juvies are now getting more experienced in accepting mid air catches. They'll soon be moving off to find their own territory I guess, but secretly hope we will have another 'hanger-on' just like last year, who may delight us a while longer yet, with it's occasional presence on the tower!

Incidentally, I saw that City Jay again, only this time it had another Jay with it, They were having a loud scrap with a young Magpie on the pavement - the Magpie was giving it's all, but then finally succumbed and gave up the territory! The Jays have obviously laid claim to the small wooded area under the railway bridge, so hope to see them often from now on.

Lorraine said...

Lovely to see one of the youngsters had settled by the near gargoyle during the wee early hours, looking plump and healthy.

Green Class said...

thank you for leting us waching the perenine folcons.Year 2 love them it will be owr last time to wach them in green class.we love waching them and we saw a adlt peregnine falcon this morrning.we liked the chicks because they were verry fluffy.we liked waching them.we liked waching them wen they fleged.

Peregrine Project Member (Nick M.) said...

Hello Green Class. Thank you for watching the peregrine falcons this year. We are glad you loved seeing them grow. We loved reading your comments.

Enjoy your summer holidays. Don't forget to look for ways to give wildlife a better home in your own garden. Why not make a bug hotel, or get Mum or Dad to put up a bird feeder or bird box? It'll be all nice and ready for next year's nesting season?

It's hot out there, so don't forget that birds need water in the garden, too.

Have a great holiday!

Nick Moyes

Lorraine said...

Three of the peregrine family om the tower as the midnight hour approaches.

Helen said...

Lovely view of a sleepy juvenile on the tower cam this evening.

Lorraine said...

The family, true to form, are all making the odd appearance on the Cam's home base scrape and tower ledges. As always, ever fascinating and adorable, with youngsters looking bright and healthy and parents looking sleek and fit.

Think it's the tiercel on the scrape presently - just chilling out and looking gorgeous as per, casting a beady eye over his City.

Phoebe said...

Lovely to see a juvie eating in the scrape looking like it owns it!

Phoebe said...

both adults are on the corbels below and the juvies is looking down at them whilst eating on the ledge.

Lorraine said...

Hi Phoebe - nice to see your name again and trust you're now well recovered etc.,


May tune in later to see if there are any visitors on the tower during the later hours.

Phoebe said...

Hi Lorraine - it will be a few more months yet until a normal life - getting there slowly.

I have been watching the cams most of the time. It seems one of the juvies is a home-lover and may stay around for longer than normal, time will tell.

I see two birds on the top, the shoulder of the nearest looks like a juvie.

Lorraine said...

Gently does it Phoebe. All best wishes during recovery and rooting with you toward the date of achievement. Go easy and keep your "pecker" up !!

Talking of which, there's a peri been sitting on the scrape for a while now, during the sunset. Very still and facing outward, so not able to see much of the chest feathers, but think it's probably the falcon.

Phoebe said...

Thanks Lorraine, the day will come.

The falcon is on the scrape now so probably was the same one earlier.