Thursday, 14 January 2021

Peregrine art and an update

Update 23 January: Antony Pooles, one of our Watch Point volunteers, passes the Cathedral regularly on foot on his way to work. Yesterday he send us this report:

"Today I witnessed a really nice interaction between the Cathedral pair and a Buzzard.

Both birds have been very faithful to the Cathedral of late and seem to be spending more time on it than on the Jury's  Inn signs (which is not surprising with breeding season just around the corner).
The female was on the tower this afternoon but I found the male on the tall, Chester Green police station aerial as I walked home along on the old Nottingham Road.
He was soon in flight towards Chaddesden and I presumed he was off hunting but in actual fact he had spotted a Buzzard drifting over from the Racecourse ground. 

The male was calling vociferously and began to stoop at the Buzzard and within a few seconds was joined by the female. For a couple of minutes the pair took turns in bombing the larger raptor who was forced to flip over and show his talons to the Peregrines on several occasions. 

The whole dogfight was brilliant to watch with the Buzzard eventually speeding back the way it had come, leaving the falcons to soar together for a short while. 

                                       A peregrine dives on a buzzard which has flipped
                                      over to defend itself. This photo was taken at Derby
                                         Cathedral several years 
ago by Jon Salloway.

While some Peregrines (such as the Exeter pair) will kill trespassing Buzzards, happily our pair were just content to show it who's boss this time!"


A really awful day here in Derbyshire today (14th January 2021)  - grey, cold and either wet or snowy depending how far north you were.

Lockdown prevents us going to see what the peregrines are doing but I suspect they would be hunkered down somewhere out of the prevailing weather.

So, maybe it's time to take a look at the work of a few wildlife artists who have painted or drawn peregrines.

Esther Tyson lives in the county though she spends a lot of time away painting in Scotland etc.
She is a prominent member of the wonderful Society of Wildlife Artists (SWLA):
Introduction | Society of Wildlife Artists ( 

Peregrine with large chick Esther Tyson

Peregrine with prey by Esther Tyson SWLA

To see more of Esther's work go to Esther Tyson ma rca 

For a very different style, here's an example of the work of Andrew Haslen showing a peregrine on a sea cliff

Peregrine by Andrew Haslen

There's more about Andrew here: SWLA – The Society of Wildlife Artists

And finally, an outstanding woodcut by Colin See-Paynton, an artist based in Wales showing a peregrine mantling over its prey:

And if you want to read possibly the best nature writing about this falcon then get hold of a copy of 

Meanwhile, despite the lockdown, we are making some progress re. connectivity of the Derby Cathedral webcams having finally discovered who has the key to the street furniture where the connectivity cables are this space (again)......

The Project Team


Phoebe said...

Wonderful peregrine art!

Wendy Bartter said...

Hi there team, any luck with live streaming yet or is lockdown putting a kibosh on plans? Take care

Wendy Bartter said...

First egg for Kingston Peregrines @ 09.51 today.. front runners!