Wednesday, 16 May 2018

The final egg and a 'heads up' on the Watch Points

It's clear than, after such a long gap between the third egg hatching and the failure of the fourth to do so, that it won't now hatch.
Whether the egg was infertile or a fully formed chick inside failed to break the eggshell open we don't know and clearly cannot get down to the nest to retrieve it to find out.
By the time we ring the chicks (when they are about 19-20 days old) it is likely the egg will have 'disappeared' - ie been accidentally broken and the shell fragments removed.
It is possible some eagle eyed observer might see what the egg contains at some stage. If you do please comment on the blog.
Failure of an egg to hatch has happened before: in 2007 two eggs failed to hatch and one failed in both 2015 and 2017.
Three chicks have died before they fledged but overall, this female of ours has been remarkably successful compared to sites elsewhere. Of 47 eggs laid up to and including 2017, she has raised 40 to the fledging stage.
This video showing the female preening while watching over her brood was made on 15th May by Wendy Bartter to whom, many thanks:



Watch Point events
As usual Derbyshire Wildlife Trust is organising a series of Watch Points on Cathedral Green once the chicks are big enough to be visible from the ground at the back of the cathedral where we assemble our telescopes.

This year, Matt Robinson has organised the volunteer rota and sought the necessary permissions to have a stand on the green which belongs to the city council.
More on Watch Points later but just to say that the first one is on Saturday May 26th May and then on every Saturday and Wednesday up to Saturday 7th July.
As usual we have a lovely band of volunteers to help everyone who comes along to see the birds and learn about their fascinating lives.

The Project Team

30 comments:

Peregrine Class said...

We've just seen the chicks without the male or female then 5 seconds later the male came and hugged the chicks then warmed them up.Another 5 seconds later the female came and told the male to go so the female could cuddle with the little chicks whilst the male gets food and the female cuddles with the chicks then they will swap over every 5 minutes

Anonymous said...

The Nottingham birds seem to be fighting a lost cause. Still incubating two eggs. Weren't they laid before the Derby birds?

Vicky said...

Right now she is moving up and down as tho on a wave of water. Little chicks sure do move a lot. Getting hungry probably.

Anne said...

I've been very lucky being able to watch the mother peregrine feeding her chicks. She is very fair by seemingly feeding each chick in turn. Amazing pictures on this lovely sunny morning.

Thanks to the team for letting us look into their family life.

Nick B said...

You (and everyone else) are very welcome Anne.
These are indeed very special birds and watching the details of their lives so intimately is a real treat for sure.
With over 4 million 'hits' to the web cams and blog since 2007 we have reached thousands of people over five continents with our birds and the story about them!
Clearly not all peregrines are as lucky as our birds since many suffer illegal persecution elsewhere (and not that far from Derby either!) and we do need to keep the wider picture about the many problems wildlife faces on this planet clearly in our minds as we watch this amazing spectacle unfold before our very eyes.
Nick B

The Project Team said...

Hi Peregrine Class
It is great that you are able to watch these birds bring up their chicks in school!
Maybe your teacher can give out the web link so you can watch at home with your family in the evenings and at the weekends too?
Keep watching!
You'll be amazed at how quickly the chicks grow and their feathers develop over the next few weeks.

Best wishes

The Project Team

Vicky said...

I believe it was dad standing over the chicks and preening. Then settled down over them. He checks them out too and they don't like it. Like a kid needing their hair brushed. They try to get away.

Wendy Bartter said...

Caught the end of a feed this morning, big prey & chicks look well filled up ..
.https://youtu.be/i0uMESQIvo4

Oak class, Derbyshire said...

We have just seen the chicks being fed. It was really exciting. We are surprised by what they ate, some of us thought they might eat slugs!
It was cool to see the adult pulling little bits of meat off the prey for the chicks!
We were very surprised when our teacher told us that peregrine falcons are the fastest animal in the world!

Vicky said...

They are having a feed right now and looks like 2 girls and a little boy. They sure do eat!

Heather said...

Both parents were on the scrape just now giving the chicks another feed. MrsP has flown off with remains of the carcass. Quite agree Vicky judging by their size I've changed my original guess and also think we have two females and one tiny little male. I've noticed he sometimes has to wait until the larger two have been fed but then his parents make sure be gets his fair share.

Vicky said...

Both parents on the scrape now and mom covering the chicks but even she is not able to cover completely as they are growing so fast. I remember a couple years ago when it was 2 girls and a little boy. He would stay close to mom even when he had his permanent feathers. A little mommy's boy. The girls look so huge compared to the boy. Love watching them.

kate said...

Morning all
Lovely and quiet on the scrape.

Just for info ( someone asked about our unhatched EGG)

SHEFFIELD has just done ringing and taken the unhatched away for analysis.
Looks like two male One Female to be confirmed.

Wendy Bartter said...

Littl'un getting filled up ...https://youtu.be/tp5fBsLXP3w

Heather said...

MrsP has obviously decided it's warm enough for the chicks to be left in a heap in the scrape as after a bit of preening she's now trying to get a decent night's sleep on the edge. Egg still not discarded, it'll be interesting to see if Sheffield's investigations into their unhatched egg throw any light on the situation.

Vicky said...

All is quiet, mom trying to sleep and the egg is up front and not covered at all. Will they be ringing the chicks this year?

kate said...

Hi Vicky and Heather
I certainly hope so... they always give us a warning and some lovely snap shots.

Beautiful morning,chicks will be wandering soon ... ooh! scary moments CHOL:):)

The Project Team said...

Hi All: we hope to ring the chicks this year and if we do and the egg is intact we will retrieve it and get it tested.
The Project Team

Anonymous said...

17.08pm - Nest completely empty except for unhatched egg? Where did they go?!

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vicky said...

Dad's sitting on the edge of the scrape and the wee ones are huddled together but the littlest one just can't get comfortable. Its funny because he disturbs the others.

Vicky said...

Dad was just eating some prey but only gave a bite or 2 to one of the chicks. It seemed like it was something they couldn't have. He swallowed a large piece that was left and now is wiping his beak against the metal. Maybe mom is out hunting up an evening snack for them.

Helen said...

All three chicks are looking very active this morning. The size difference between them is quite apparent now, although the smallest chick was determined to get his fair share of the food on offer. Their wing feathers are also starting to develop.

Helen said...

Looks like the egg might be partly broken as there is egg shell on the platform.

Alex Rock said...

Feeding time!

Vicky said...

Chicks are alone and resting. I bet mom or dad is not far away.

Wendy Bartter said...

A late feed sees littl'un doing well although gets blocked a bit at the end ...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ar6HKw3682k

Wendy Bartter said...

Saw that shell in my vid Helen, wondered where it came from? No good view of egg though!

Vicky said...

Little ones are sleeping and adult on the edge sleeping.

Heather said...

Early morning breakfast is served with tiny one right in front with one of his sisters, both had a really good feed. I don't think we need to worry about this little male he seems to have established himself in the pecking order so to speak! The other sister eventually had her share as well and MrsP flew off with remains of carcass. Egg still near chicks but can't tell if broken or not.