I was hoping to call this first Peregrine blog of the 2015 season “egg sighting news”, but it’s been relatively quiet in the box up till now, just sleeping there overnight and preparing an impressive scrape, with the action so far happening outside the box, as a third Peregrine has been seen in the area over the past few days. (Sorry if this is reading like a football report.)
However, tonight (Thu 19 Mar) the female is standing over the “scrape” rather than settling down to sleep, so maybe an egg is immanent.
By day the resident pair of adults have been trying to see off the intruder, but without too much aggression, so Nick Dixon suspects that the third bird may be last year’s surviving female juvenile. If she has failed to find her own territory and mate, this returning behaviour is not uncommon; the resident birds will recognise their offspring and not attack, but the female may see her as competition, hence the lack of welcome.
So an interesting development just as we are expecting the first egg around the time of the equinox and eclipse. It would be great to get sight of a leg ring to back up our suspicions, but asking a lot of any observer or photographer. We think the resident female is in her seventh breeding season here, so probably not ready to be displaced.
After a couple of different technical issues from last year, the live streaming of the nest box camera to the church website peregrine page, https://www.stmichaelsmountdinham.org.uk/peregrine-falcons/
was brought back online on Tuesday 17th March. It has needed a couple of early morning restarts but is otherwise functioning well. (Live streaming costs us about £5 per day, totalling some £600 over the breeding season, so any donations via the MyDonate facility on the website, or otherwise, would be most appreciated.)
Last year’s Peregrine diary can be found in the website blogs for March to June 2014, or with https://www.stmichaelsmountdinham.org.uk/tag/peregrine-falcons/
Meanwhile at St Michael’s we are also getting ready for the solemn and joyful activities with which we Christians recount the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus. Information on Services from Passion Sunday through to Easter (5th April) and beyond is also on the website.