Welcome back!

Nigel Smith holding one of the 2011 falcon babies

With a mild spell in the weather at the end of January, our resident pair of falcons were seen to be inspecting the nest site. You can already see where they have made a scraping in the gravel in the nesting box.

We have cleaned out the box and surrounding area, we have also added a few additions to the recording set-up which will hopefully improve our monitoring of them.

We received a number of emails from people who had been monitoring the growth of the chicks and had asked us about the actual size of the parents and chicks, so this year, after taking advice from Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust we have included a “ watch me grow” chart at the rear of the nest box. This has measurements on it so that you can compare the size of the falcons with an average ruler at home or in class. So thanks to the schools and individuals who emailed  suggesting this.

We have also increased and upgraded the cameras, so this year we are broadcasting in high definition!   We also have an infra red light overlooking the nest (this was after several email suggestions)  so we even should be able to see what’s happening at night.

Our second camera is remote control, allowing us at NTU to move and zoom in on anything we think that may be of interest. This will be very useful in keeping track of the chicks when they become more mobile. They use the large guttering on the building where the nest box is situated as a “playground” and last year could be found tapping on the windows further down the building and viewing the humans inside!

We all look forward to having the privilege to view these exceptional creatures one again this year and in this blog you can expect to find ongoing commentary from us within the NTU team, as well as various members of the Wildlife Trust.

Nigel Smith
NTU Resources Manager

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14 Responses to Welcome back!

  1. penny says:

    WELCOME BACK. DO LAST YEARS BROOD NEST LOCALLY?

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    • rogdog77 says:

      Hi there –
      It is thought that after fledging, most chicks head south initially but their search for territories of their own could eventually take to any corner of Britain with suitable habitat. Although we do ring the chicks (specially marked rings are placed on their legs) these will only provide us with information if one of the chicks is turns up as a casualty and someone collects the ring and gets in touch. However, with 16 chicks reared successfully there could well be one or two living in the local area.
      Thanks
      Erin McDaid, Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

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  2. Nick Brown says:

    We ring the Derby Cathedral peregrine chicks with both a numbered metal BTO ring and a colour ring and have done so since 2007. The latter has a large, simple number on it so that if the bird is seen anywhere and the observer can read the number with a telescope (004 for example) and see the colour they can report the bird to the BTO and thus find out where it was raised and let us know. Maybe a good idea to do that with the Nottingham chicks?
    Nick B
    Ps No report of any of our Derby chicks to date but of course they suffer a high mortality rate in the early weeks after fledging.
    Reports are infrequent but I recall one fledgling raised in Brighton was later seen in Cambridge.

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    • rogdog77 says:

      The chicks in the nest on NTU’s Newton building are usually ringed using a standard BTO metal ring. In future we also plan to fit a tiny electronic transponder to the birds’ legs in addition to the BTO ring. These transponders can be tracked by the use of special electronic loops installed at nesting and roosting sites. By using automatic data loggers it is then possible to track the birds as they disperse from their nest sites and set up new breeding territories. As the number of sites with data loggers increases over time the data collected will help us learn more about the birds’ life span, distances of dispersal, productivity, site fidelity and recruitment in to a breeding population.

      Erin McDaid, Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust

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  3. stephen o connor says:

    did u take pigeon rings out of the nest last year. if so what kind of numbers.thanks stephen

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  4. Phil Henson says:

    Hello all
    This morning at around 09.30 one of the Falcons was sitting in a tree at the top of our garden in Basford
    My wife and I watched the bird for about 10 minutes during which it was turning it’s head through 180 degrees
    It then just flew away
    It was a fantastic site

    Phil

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  5. anon says:

    hi watched the falcons early this morning saw mrs p feed the strong chick with one of the dead ones not nice but nature i suppose then pleased to see mr p return -looks grim for the other chick hes so weak but hopefully now at least one should survive now both peregrines are back together.

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  6. tim tuckwood says:

    This snow is not looking good for the first egg.

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  7. Danny says:

    can i request the return of my racing pigeon ring and also my phone number ring that are currently in the bottom right hand of the nest box. clearly visable on camara 2. Also any other ring can be handed to me in order to return to others that have lost racers. thanks in advance

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    • gillyntu says:

      Hi Danny. We will not be able to disturb the nest box again until the chicks have fledged. At the end of the season the team from the Wildlife Trust will collect all rings found in and around the box and will log them with the Royal Racing Pigeon Association.

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  8. mo101 says:

    Just checked the nest this morning, 7am US time and it’s empty. Are they off camera, or did they fly away??

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