19 June 2010,
Well, it's all been happening in the last few weeks!
As you know from the last post, we lost one of the four original chicks around 23 May. On Saturday 29 May it was a rainy day and so we limited the event to the Museum. Then, at about 12.20 a lady rushed into the Museum to say that some people outside near City Hall had found a chick on the pavement and were "kicking" it to make it fly off. James and I rushed outside to see what was going on and there was a chick on the road, surrounded by people. It obviously had jumped the nest a bit too early, as it couldn't fly yet.
So we contacted Adrian Williams, local falconer who we're consulting with, who came down to check it over. He said it was fine, just a bit underweight. James and Adrian took the chick back to City Hall roof where the chick was placed just under the clock tower. By the bank holiday Monday, the bird had made it back onto the tower, but not to the nest.
In the week or two after we have only ever seen two juvenile birds at one time, so it looks as if the third one did not get enough food from its parents and was out-competed by its siblings. Sad news.
However, the remaining two are now flying! They're coming up against their own challenges as the gulls try to mob them as they practice their flying skills, but it doesn't seem to be deterring them from making significant progress. They're beginning to look quite adept, so do come down and see us soon, as we'll be seeing some aerial acrobatics as the young birds get taught their hunting skills by the adults.
25 May 2010,
One of the peregrine chicks has died. We are now down to three chicks in the nest.
Staff, and our peregrine-cam visitors, noticed yesterday that there were only two chicks in the nest. So our first thought was that we had lost two!
Luckily the third chick returned to the nest in the evening after having been on a journey around the clock tower ledge.
Today the RSPB project officer has spent the day looking for the fourth chick, but to no avail. It seems unlikely that the chick is still alive.
One possible explanation is that the chick was the weakest of the four, and that the hot weather over the last few days has been too much for it to cope.
The three remaining chicks look very healthy and have a very good chance of surviving, particularly as the weather seems to be getting cooler.
24 May 2010,
Last week our Museum photographer took some stunning pictures of the peregrines from the Museum's roof. We hired a 600mm F4 lens with a 2x converter to enable us to zoom in to the nest.
Here are some images of the 4 chicks and the parents feeding the chicks.
11 May 2010,
Some superb views of the adults feeding the 4 chicks today.
After last year's disappointment having 4 chicks this year is fantastic and they all look very healthy.
They are growing rapidly so keep watching to see how they are doing.
29 April 2010,
It's official - the Peregrines on the Clock Tower have successfully produced young - the first since 2008. On Thursday 22 April at 2.40pm the female bird Stacey was seen at the nest with a fresh kill, carefully distributing pieces of it in the nest - but annoyingly we couldn't actually see any chicks.
However, our suspicions were confirmed over the next few days as we saw a white fluffy head appear in the nest....then another on Tuesday 27 April, then finally one more today! Today the male seemed to be doing a good job of bringing lots of food for the chicks, before taking a well earned rest right on the top of the tower - the rain wasn't going to spoil his kip!
The chicks are expected to fledge in late May, but will remain at the nest for several months, relying on their parents for food while they learn how to fly and hunt. As the parents teach their young the awesome flying and hunting skills that peregrines are renowned for, it will mean fantastic aerial displays and some amazing views for us down on the ground.
- All entries
- Collections & Research
- Community Engagement
- First World War
- Museums, Exhibitions and Events
- The Shop Blog