Norwich News Items

Norwich Peregrines Nest Activity Log- 29/05/20

May 29, 2020 Norwich Peregrine Blog Zoe Smith
Sunny day. Wind 13km/hr. Temperature 15 degrees 09.00. Chicks were fed at 07.30 with what looked like a pigeon.They are now all awake and all of them are busy preening. They are now loosing a great deal of their down as they preen. This can be seen blowing…

Norwich Peregrines Nest Activity Log- 28/05/20

May 28, 2020 Norwich Peregrine Blog Zoe Smith
Weather: A beautiful, cloudless late May morning, warming up rapidly. 7.30 ish Chicks were fed. 11:00 - We begin this morning with the four chicks, looking enormous now, lined up at the front of the box. The three nearest the camera are in the shade, the one…

Norwich Peregrines Nest Activity Log- 27/05/20

May 27, 2020 Norwich Peregrine Blog Zoe Smith
7:19 The first view of the day is of the four chicks lying around the platform. No sun at this point. 7:20 A head comes up…. ….then everybody stirs as the Tiercel arrives with food. 7:23 All going well on the feeding, although TC is quite literally in the…

Norwich Peregrines Nest Activity Log- 10/05/20

7:26       First view of the day, and GA is mid-feed, vigorously pulling meat from the kill to give to the chicks.   At one point, she gives a piece to one chick, but is still attached to the rest of a leg, so the chick briefly has a foot sticking out of its mouth.   It has to drop it as too large to manage!

7:30       GA decides that the chicks have had enough for now, so takes the remains onto the parapet.

…..and then she is gone, taking the remains away to pick over for herself perhaps, or maybe to store for later.

7:32       This morning the chicks are huddled together for warmth.   Significant contrast in the temperature from yesterday.

7:34       GA returns without food, so it has evidently been put in the larder for later.   GA has a quick go round her talons to remove fragments, before joining the chicks in the far corner of the platform.

7:38       A top view suggests that even GA has trouble providing cover for the fast growing chicks.

8:56       Big contrast from yesterday, as GA huddles down with the chicks to shelter them from the stiff breeze. Very handy that we have our own “windsock” in the form of a feather stuck on the end of the camera support!   Quite a hazy morning too.

9:00       The breeze is giving GA quite a crest, blowing her feathers up from behind her head.   She must be watching one-eyed, as the nearer one is closed but her head is moving about.

9:03       GA is suddenly alert and calling loudly.   The Tiercel arrives with food, and a brief tug-of-war follows as GA “takes” the offering.   The Tiercel leaves again while GA continues calling loudly.   There is a glorious brief moment when the Tiercel is visible in silhouette in the background, as he soars on the breeze.

9:05       GA continues to call for some time, directing her gaze up at the spire, so perhaps the Tiercel has gone to perch on high.

9:13       Having grabbed the food with such eagerness, GA seems disinterested, and just stands guard over it and the chicks.

9:17       One chick can be seen in the background, doing some preening.

9:18       GA is looking around, but not apparently tracking anything.   A sharp look round and up at the spire.

9:20       For a moment it looked like GA was taking an interest in the food, but it just seems to have been a glance and nothing more.

9:21       GA calling again, slightly half-heartedly.

9:23       More grooming by one of the chicks.

9:26       GA begins to pick at the carcass, then moves over to the chicks, calling to them to give them food.

9:27       The chicks have responded to GA’s calls to feed, and she now has four in a line.

9:38       GA discontinues feeding the chicks, takes up the remnants, and leaves the platform.   The overhead view shows bulging crops on the chicks standing at the front of the group.

               This gives a new meaning to the term “crop circles”!

9:40       Judging by the crop, that’s one well fed chick!

9:44        GA suddenly begins rapid calls and takes to the parapet.   After a few moments of watching, she returns to standing over the chicks.

9:46       The rapid calls strike up again, as GA is watching the sky.   Possible intruder?

9:47       GA has the chicks penned into the far corner of the platform, sheltering from the stiff breeze.   The sun is not particularly strong at the moment.

10:10     GA continues to cover the chicks in the far corner.   The breeze is strong enough, and gusty enough to be audible over the background noise.

10:14     A chick emerges from behind its mother to lay out in the pale sunlight.   The Tiercel can just be heard calling somewhere off camera.   The sound seems to be moving so perhaps he is circling the spire just out of camera range.   Difficult to be sure, as the background noise has recently become more intrusive.

10:20     GA is mostly relaxed with eyes closed, but just occasionally opens both eyes and has a quick look round.

10:35     GA shuffles in position.   It is becoming increasingly blustery, and the sky is beginning to look quite overcast.   Considering how breezy it is, there does seem to be quite a haze this morning.   The one brave chick has retreated to be sheltered by Mum.

10:55     GA more alert, looking around, but not calling.

10:57     The wind has become very strong now, whistling quite loudly around the pipework and brackets.

11:00     The session ends with GA huddling the chicks into the far corner of the platform.

Weather- cool, windy, overcast. Some rain. Wind - north easterly

11.00am GA on nest tucked up the corner. Cant see the chicks! Bit different to yesterday when they were manoeuvring themselves into the shade.

11.02am Male arrives. GA is yelling at him. He has brought a small piece of prey with him. ? a wing. He pecks small bits off and feeds the chicks under GA who isn't budging. Suspect he has brought this from the larder.

11.06am The male leaves.

11.09am She shuffles around protecting the chicks.

11.30am Something attracts her attention overhead.

11.40am She starts calling at whatever it is.

11.41am More loud calling then the male brings in a kill. It is a small bird possibly a starling fledgeling. 

11.45am He feeds them behind GA. Three quarters of an hour and I still haven't seen the chicks!

11.46am He leaves the nest. He looks as if he is enjoying the strong wind.

11.49am. GA wanders over to the camera. I see the chicks at last! She soon returns to them.

12.30pm More overhead calling

12.41pm More calling.

12.42pm She gets up still calling, sits on the ledge for a while then leaves. The chicks are huddled up together in the corner.

12.43pm. The male returns. He is looking straight down the camera.

12.44pm. He moves round then plonks himself right in front of the camera.

12.46pm GA returns yelling at him. She is empty handed but picks up the remnants of the old kill and feeds bits to the chicks.

12.49pm She walks towards the camera looking for more discarded titbits. She feeds on one bit herself.

12.50pm She returns to the chicks.

12.55pm The nearest chick does a projectile poo!

13.00pm End of shift.

13:00 GA tucked in n/e corner of nest box facing the cathedral wall with head turned over shoulder. Chicks awake and shuffling about. 

13:16 GA preens

13:30 chick nearest camera gets up and stretches wings

13:35 chicks shuffling about 

13:41 one chick exposed slightly and preens. GA dozing with head facing over shoulder

13:42 GA calls out/screams. Tiercel returns to nest and pecks the pebbles and leaves again

13:43 GA makes a noise again and looks directly up the spire and is very alert

13:47 GA looks about 

13:49 GA half stands and calls out

13:50 GA leaves chicks unattended. One of the defecates

13:51 Tiercel returns

13:53 Screaming off screen. GA returns with prey (large) and the tiercel leaves. GA proceeds to feed the chicks till about 14:04

14:04 GA moves slightly anticlockwise and attempts to feed the chicks again but settles down to brood

It's very cold and blustery. Raining too. GA keeps her head down for the most to ensure the chicks are covered as much as possible. 

14:28 GA looks up briefly

14:38 GA looks up briefly again

14:44 GA shuffles. One chick is slightly exposed - head protruding from underneath. 

Weather: A real autumnal feel to the afternoon; grey skies, rain and an extremely blustery wind.

15:00 - GA is currently huddled over the chicks in the NE corner of the box, sheltering her family from the wind and rain. The sound of the wind whistling can be heard over the microphone.

15:30 - GA looks around occasionally but otherwise she hasn't moved.

15:41 - GA calls and looks towards the camera. For the first time on this shift that we've had a proper view of one of the chicks as it tries to squirm out from under its mother. However, GA knows best and the chick is gently but firmly tucked back under her breast. Her movement also reveals the remains of the last meal tucked beneath her.

15:54 - GA has a stretch thus revealing the pile of down otherwise known as the family. She gazes intently out of the front of the box.

16:01 - One of the chicks can be seen yawning. GA is still sheltering them even though the rain has eased or even stopped. However, as she is standing we can see the faces of the chicks.

16:03 - GA leaves the chicks and jumps up onto the front of the box, where she sits, the wind ruffling her feathers. The chicks huddle together to keep warm.

16:06 - GA comes back into the box and picks up the prey item that she'd been sitting on. She tries some for herself and then begins to feed the chicks.

16:16 - GA is working really hard to extract the final morsels from the carcass.

16:18 - Feeding time is over so GA settles back over the chicks in the NE corner of the box, her head tucked right into the corner.

16:20 - It's taken GA a good two minutes to get the chicks settled beneath her but at last she seems settled.

16:28 - GA begins her keening cry and on cue the tiercel arrives carrying prey. He brings it over to her head and appears to try and feed her. GA continues her shrill call. The male takes the prey into the middle of the box where he feeds himself. GA remains sitting tight on the chicks.

16:31 - The tiercel leaves the box with the prey item. It obviously wasn't required, the chicks having been fed only twenty minutes ago. GA watches him go.

17:00 - And so today we leave GA sheltering her family from the wind that continues to whip around the spire. More tomorrow!

Thank you to todays volunteers; Peter Ducker, Kathy Blake, Carola Wayne, Colin Smith and Brendon Ollett.