British wildlife heavyweights hail the arrival of our chicks

As you will already know, our peregrine chicks (or eyasses as they are technically known) hatched this week. For those of you who missed it, here is a video of the fourth chick on its way out…


Since then we’ve had some really positive comments about our work from three of the UK’s most prominent names in wildlife television.

Here are some of their comments:

“I was delighted to hear that the eggs in Nottingham’s famous city centre peregrine nest have hatched.  With thousands of people viewing the family each day, the webcam gives people an amazing opportunity to see these wonderful creatures at close quarters. Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust has been working with Nottingham Trent University to protect these birds for years but the webcams help bring its work directly into people’s homes and places of work.  I’ve heard that when Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust posts an update about the birds on its website, the city grinds to halt as everyone stops what they are doing so they can watch the webcam! This project is a great example of how The Wildlife Trusts protect wildlife on people’s doorsteps.”
Bill Oddie, Author, Naturalist and TV Presenter

“Congratulations on the new arrivals.  I’ve been checking the website every morning and it was a great thrill to see the first chick. I wish them all well.”
Tony Soper, Co-founder of the BBC Natural History Unit www.tonysoper.com

“Superb! Such great pictures.”
Chris Packham, Naturalist and TV Presenter (sent from his Twitter account)

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82 Responses to British wildlife heavyweights hail the arrival of our chicks

  1. It was so lovely to see that as when I first noticed the fourth chick had hatched would have not been long after this action which I missed. So seeing this recording was lovely to watch. Thank you.

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  2. lisa waby says:

    Will you be reporting the numbers of the racing pigeon rings that are in the nest to the RPRA when the chicks have gone so that the owners know what has happend to there birds?

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    • daventu says:

      Hi there, thanks for your comment. Yes, any rings found at the end of the year are logged here – http://www.rpra.org/StraysReportingForm/tabid/105/Default.aspx.

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      • jim shaw says:

        I bet you don,t report them, because of the amount they are taking

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      • The Zuffler says:

        I hope you inform us of the amount of racing pigeon rings found within the nest. This should go some way in dispelling the myth that racing pigeons are constantly taken by these birds. As a falconer I once informed a racing pigeon trainer he was releasing his pigeons next to where I fly (not for one instance thinking my falcon would take one – in straight line flight the racing pigeon is much faster, but I don’t want confrontation). His attitude was very flippant to say the least and continued (and still does) release his pigeons next to where I train my falcons.

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      • The Zuffler says:

        I would also like to point out, as a falconer, I love nothing more than to see these wonderful birds in there own habitat, wherever they make home.

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      • jim shaw says:

        jc and chris morley, you clearly understand nothing about wildlife and need to be educated in nature, balances are not created by a false nest in exposed position so the chicks can die
        or by wiping out indigenous bird populations in favour of a raptor.
        if you knew anything about the peregrine you would no it is the fastest bird in the world when hunting, so your ridiculous comments on weeding out the worst racing pigeons is banal at the least, perhaps if we protect the golden eagle to the same extent and they start taking small dogs, and babies out of their prams yopu can come out with the same statements.

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    • GeoffT says:

      What makes you think that the falcons take so many ringed racing pigeons? It’s not as though there are enough dull lazy birds flapping around the Council House and Market Square to feast on. I can practically pick them up with my hands. If I kept racing pigeons I’d imagine this would be an occupational hazard.

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      • jim shaw says:

        Occupational hazard, just yesterday they devoured 2, racing pigeons, live on your webcam, in the space of 3 hours.
        They are devastating the past times of many people, not even originating from this country and over protected. Funny how people panic if an eagle owl, which was a native to this country, turns up as they prey on peregrines and sparrowhawks, and the loving RSPB go out of their way to stop them, nesting here.
        Just recently a RSPB survey, pointed at the diminishing starling numbers and song birds. It is these darlings that are diminishing the numbers.
        Also I can count 3 pigeon rings in the nest, not counting the 2 carcasses they flew off with yesterday.

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      • lfc says:

        These raptors among others are responsible for the ever decreasing decline in our songbirds in this country. The reason why it is documented how many racing pigeons are killed is because people are watching this webcam and you can quite clearly see the pigeon rings. It isn’t an “occupational hazard” to pigeon racers to have their birds killed having paid in some circumstances a great deal of money for them. When will people wake up to the fact that these raptors need to be controlled they are not an endangered species anymore. What are we waiting for oh yes until there are no songbirds left!!!!!!! Then people will be saying oh you don’t see many blackbirds,thrush anymore. I wonder why?
        SAVE OUR SONGBIRDS

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      • chris morley says:

        here here mate ,racing pidgeons that get caught by birds of prey cant be very good at racing its like everything in nature they are just weeding out the rubbish so the good stuff flourishes its only when we interfere that things get out of hand the birds are restoring the natural balance good on em

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      • jc says:

        Pigeons and songbirds again…

        If it’s songbirds you want, move to the Peak District somewhere. Trust me, there are tons of them. It’s not as if they’re going to die out any time soon.

        If you race pigeons and one of them gets picked up by a falcon, they’ve done you a favour. The thing was clearly too slow. Not going to win any races that one, is it?

        Look, in all seriousness, the falcons have adapted to live in a city because people have done their best to, and damn near, wiped them out. We don’t have any right to decide the fate of any species (and I’m including things like pandas here. Time wasters.) and it’s a good thing the falcons got the protection they needed. What people are doing now, quite rightly, is letting them live their lives as naturally as possible (the presence of that camera makes no difference to them, I think that’s obvious).

        If that means a bit less noise of a morning, who are we to decide whether or not that’s a bad thing? A (supposedly) pleasant noise vs life or death? Sounds, at best, pretty selfish if not breathtakingly arrogant from where I’m stood. Songbirds aren’t going to die out, that’s just a basic misunderstanding of nature. No prey = no falcons = an abundance of insects that the songbirds would eat = annoyed human beings. It won’t happen. A balance will, inevitably, be struck and manage itself.

        And if that means a few less pigeons on market square, fine by me…

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  3. PamUK says:

    Logged on in the middle of a feeding session. The two larger chicks were being fed but it was hard to watch the other two being crushed between their siblings. I didn’t see the little ones get any food at all and the smallest had a hard time even lifting his head up let alone open his beak.

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  4. Fiona says:

    Interestingly I thought similar for about 30 seconds then the parent bird very tenderly sought out the smallest chick and fed it a ‘huge’ piece of meat! discovering it was too big the adult then chopped it up and fed it piece by piece to the little one. These are experienced parent birds and at times like that it really shows!

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  5. PamUK says:

    Another feed at 3.30pm and still little Tiny got nothing while I watched. Those two big ones had fully extended crops but did not back off from taking more food. Did all the chicks survive and fledge last year?

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    • daventu says:

      Hi Pam – yes, all fledged successfully last year. As Erin said in his previous post, the chicks may develop at different speeds as they compete for food.

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  6. Pam Birley. says:

    Thanks Dave….good to know they all survived last year, fingers crossed for this year too.

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  7. SueAtt says:

    Watched a feed just after 5pm and so relieved to see that all 4 chicks were fed this time – even little ‘George’ managed to get his head up and push his way in!

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  8. Penny says:

    I was wondering why our Falcons do not have names. I have been watching some Italian Falcons (whilst we were waiting for ‘our’ eggs to hatch, because they already had chicks) and they all have names – Aria and Vento, Alice and Virgilio, etc. The chicks are also given names when they are ringed. Perhaps, Dave, you could answer this question for me?

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    • daventu says:

      Hi Penny – our four chicks were named last year, William, Kate, Isaac and Newton! Keep an eye on the blog for some interesting news regarding naming this year’s brood!

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      • Penny says:

        Thanks Dave for your very prompt reply and I am delighted to hear that the chicks will be given names! Love the names of last year’s chicks too – has any news been heard of them since they flew the nest?

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      • daventu says:

        All the chicks were ringed but we can’t say for certain where they have made their new home – unless you find one with its ring of course. I do know that the wildlife trust are considering using a new monitoring system in the future that might make it easier to track chicks after they leave the nest

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  9. freda says:

    Is the heavy rain a problem for the birds and their chicks? Presumably their adult feathers have a resistance of some kind to a soaking? Will the rain affect their hunting and provision of food to the chicks?

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  10. Christine says:

    Just seen Dad ring some food to the nest at 6.35pm but it doesn’t look like Mum wanted to give them any and has covered them all up again, maybe saving it for later ?

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    • Ian Fretwell says:

      I watched half an hour earlier and mum had given them lots of food she had bought to the nest, so when she had the second lot from dad she just pushed it underneath her! ; -0)

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  11. PamUK says:

    All the chicks got a share of the feed this morning at 10.15 am. Windy at the nest. Glad to hear the chicks will be named. I have been pestering for names to be given to the Rutland Water ospreys but the staff adamantly stick to just those confusing numbers and when there is no numbered ring then identification of a particular bird is very long-winded. Looking forward to seeing the peregrine names 🙂

    Like

  12. Christine says:

    Have just seen another feed at 5.30pm but the little one didn’t seem to get much although both parents doing the feed, at one point one of the parents ‘pinched’ the other one’s meat to give to the chicks, do you think the parents are regulating how much the little one gets because he is not as developed as the older one’s ? He has grown though so must be getting something ?

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  13. Fiona says:

    Given the storm and rain blasting across the region today, and the knowledge that these guys exist in extreme climate conditions, how long can they maintain this bad weather parenting. The bird on the nest is now soaked to the skin and shivering. Not seen the other bird all morning….

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  14. Stephen says:

    Worryingly I can now see a part of a chick sticking out from under the female and it’s not moving.

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  15. Christine says:

    2.10pm, Oh dear this doesn’t look good, is that the little one I can see poking out from under the left wing ?I hope that the female has plenty of oil in her feathers, has anyone seen the male or a feed today ?

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  16. Sam Rice says:

    For next year to the powers that be please make a cover for this box,its dreadful to see the falcon taking such a hammering with the weather we are having at the moment. She is soaked to the skin at the moment doing her best to cover the chicks in such awful conditions….give her a break make a cover.

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    • jaredntu says:

      We will have a full review of this year’s falcon project at the end of the season. But it’s worth noting that relatively this has been a very successful nesting site over the past few years – it’s just hard to cater for weather as awful as it was yesterday.

      Like

  17. anderson666 says:

    Just following up with what Fiona has said, it’s mid afternoon now Sunday, have i missed a feed here, has the other bird brought anything in, it looks the same as this morning with a very wet parent there, but i’m a little concerned at what looks like a chick out in the rain and no clear movement from it.

    Like

  18. Christine says:

    Well it’s now 4.15pm – sunday, the female is soaking wet and hasn’t moved, I’m hoping the white ‘fluff’ I can see is a prey item from earlier and not the youngest chick, whatever it is it is lifeless, wish the rain would stop for them

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  19. SueAtt says:

    I’ve been watching on and off all day – not seen Mr P at all. Mrs P moved a little at around 1pm and one of the chicks slid out from beneath her wing and hasn’t moved since, so I can only assume, sadly, that we have lost one. Was worried about the others, but Mum moved slightly a few minutes ago and I think I could see movement underneath her – hopefully! Not sure if Mum or chicks have had any food today, unless Dad has been whilst I was not watching. This is terrible, hope the rain stops before nightfall.

    Like

  20. Sam says:

    Do we have our first fertality for the Notts peregrines?it could have been so easily avoided with just a bit of thought on the design of the box?

    Like

  21. Carl says:

    Was there as much bad weather last year like there is today?

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    • jaredntu says:

      Not to our knowledge. There’s always bad weather, but yesterday was severe – especially so early in the lives of the chicks.

      Like

  22. Fiona says:

    The rain has at last stopped but it looks like they may have lost a chick, has anyone seen the partner today?

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  23. Hannah says:

    Has anybody else noticed that one of the chicks seem to be totally still and maybe dead? More to the point i think i can only see two chicks moving around?:s

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  24. Ian Fretwell says:

    jUAST LOOKED AT 6.35 PM sUNDAY IM SURE ONE OF THS CHICKS LOOKS DEAD, ITS BEEN RAINING NON STOP ALL DAY ! sorry about the caps ; -0) hope im wrong!

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  25. Karen says:

    So shocked to log on just now and see mum looking so bedraggled. When she left there was one chck dead, one dying one ok and the other one…? can’t see at the moment….

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  26. Christine says:

    6.50pm will someone please let me know what is happening ? It looks like the young one is dead, I can only see one chick calling for food as ther are no parents on the nest,

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  27. twitcher says:

    not the dad all day! One looks dead to me with another one very weak!

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  28. Christine says:

    Am very sad tonight as I fear the little one has lost the battle – God Bless little one x

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  29. I’ve heard two chicks are dead and the third one dying. If they loose all the chicks will they breed again this year?

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  30. Diane says:

    Has one or two of the chicks died, i haven’t seen them fed for ages and when mum left the nest only one chick seemed to be on full form?

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  31. Caroline says:

    Oh dear I think at least one of the chicks has died..this rain and cold weather was too much for the little thing…very sad.

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  32. Christine says:

    I know it’s not good but I think we are all desperate for news, will someone be updating the blog today ? My heart goes out to the peregrines and all the team who have been involved

    Like

  33. Shirley Stirland says:

    looking like the worse news for the chicks,no sign of the male and mum unable to leave chicks at all in this weather,very sad,hopefully whatever has happened to the male had no human element 😦

    Like

  34. Caroline says:

    Camera’s not working today …wanted to see if the 3 remaining chicks were alright.

    Like

  35. julie907 says:

    Morning, I like many followed events unfolding yesterday and am utterly devastated at what has happened. Just waiting to hear some official news on the situation and desperately hoping something good comes out of this. Poor mum and dad and little ones 😦

    Like

  36. Mo Cole says:

    so so sorry….. rip little chicks……x

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  37. Rob says:

    Checked the cams this morning no feed?
    I was watching the nest yesterday brooding bird and one chick looked very wet. I hope the parent is sensible enough not to try flying with wet feathers.

    Anyone have news?

    Like

  38. Sarah says:

    Whats happened to the camera?

    Like

  39. StellaCorfu says:

    Have been really worried about them this week end. The weather looked horrendous and the birds were drenched. One chick wasn’t quite under the wing at one time and I just hoped it wasn’t getting soaked too. Glad to see the sun is shining this morning and all 4 seem to have survived.

    Like

  40. Caroline says:

    Oh dear another chick looks bad…very sad if we only have one chick this year…never mind hope the adults keep safe so we can have more chicks next year.
    Don’t worry about what you are showing to the world…IT’S LIFE…it normally goes on without anyone seeing it. Life isn’t a Disney film where every thing comes right in the end, sad though it is.

    Like

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