News Items

September 17, 2019
Latest News Super User

New Wetland Area at Sculthorpe

The new wetland area is taking shaping. Photos: (C) Martin Hayward-Smith
August 06, 2019
Latest News Super User

Sculthorpe Moor Closure

The Sculthorpe Moor Nature Reserve and Visitor Centre will be CLOSED this SATURDAY 10 AUGUST from MIDDAY for a private function for our fabulous volunteers
July 02, 2019
Shot Marsh Harrier
Latest News Su Gough

Horror as rare Marsh Harrier shot next to Sculthorpe reserve

On 21 June a dog walker came across a critically injured male Marsh Harrier on the boundary of the Trust’s nature reserve at Sculthorpe Moor near Fakenham in Norfolk. Sadly, the finder was unable to get to the bird to rescue but did take a photograph which…

Fire brigade called to nest site - false alarm

Jul 02, 2019 783
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Last night the fire brigade were called to the Hawk and Owl Trust Peregrine nesting…

Bright future ahead as nationally important nature reserve more than triples in size.

Jun 24, 2019 948
Sculthorpe moor oak fen by Andy Thompson
The ink is barely dry, but today Hawk and Owl Trust are celebrating watching the…

Barn Owl Live Update

Jun 23, 2019 834
Barn Owl Update Sunday 23rd June 2019. 3 eggs hatched so far, and 3 remaining. The male…

Serendipity Garden Project

Jun 18, 2019 369
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Just a few of our amazing volunteers busy with the 'Serendipity Gardening Project' at…

Wet weather affecting breeding season. In some places...

Jun 17, 2019 827
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In south and eastern Britain last week the heavens opened, and it seemed like the rain…

Norwich Peregrines: all 3 chicks fledge

Jun 07, 2019 1816
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Today, 7th June 2019, at about 20 minutes past midday the third, and final, chick fledged…

Volunteers Week 2019

Jun 06, 2019 385
Flora Surveying
What do a warm welcome, Barn Owls raising chicks in nest boxes, cleared ditches,…

First 2019 Peregrine chick at Norwich fledges.

Jun 02, 2019 1079
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At 10.40am this morning the first of the chicks at the Norwich cathedral Peregrine nest…

Bath Peregrine chick 'TX' returned successfully.

Jun 01, 2019 519
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Bath Peregrine chick, colour-ringed ‘TX’, which left the nest box backwards on 18 May…

Bath Peregrines update - one chick fledges.

May 24, 2019 691
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Bath Peregrines latest: Female TV fledged on the evening of 24 May 2019 and spent the…

chickYesterday (13 May 2019) the three Peregrine chicks at Norwich cathedral were ringed by fully-trained licenced bird ringers, who have been granted special access to the nest of a Schedule 1 protected species – without which it is illegal to approach the nest of Peregrines.

After being carefully removed from the nest, the chicks are taken inside and measured, checked and weighed before a lightweight, individually numbered metal ring is placed on their leg. Once each has been ringed and their details – biometrics – recorded they are replaced in the nest together.

Handling the chicks like this allows us the opportunity to check their health and the biometrics will reveal the likely sex of each chick, although it is never 100% accurate.

During the ringing process the parents were nearby and aware of what was happening. As in previous years the male seemed unconcerned and the female, who has not experienced ringing of her chicks before, flew around and called, but quickly settled as soon as the chicks were returned. Food was brought in and the family were feeding normally very shortly after the ringers had left the cathedral spire.

The ring is the equivalent of us wearing a bracelet or wrist watch and the birds ignore them, but they do allow individual identification should the bird ever been found in the future. In addition to the metal BTO rings, we also fix lightweight plastic ‘Darvic’ colour rings, each with a unique combination of colour and 2-letter code. These allow individual identification of the bird without the need to capture or handle them in any way – much as the resident female Peregrine at Norwich is ringed with a blue Darvic ring with the letters ‘GA’ inscribed on it. This has revealed that she is the same bird that was ringed as a chick at Bath in 2013, and that several of her siblings have also been resighted in various locations around the country.

This year the chicks measured as two females and one male. The two females were colour ringed with orange YL and YS and the male with orange L7. We look forward to finding out where the three Norwich chicks this year end up, whilst all the while adding to scientists’ knowledge of the birds, their dispersal and survival patterns.

Photo by Chris Skipper