• Peregrinator

Cromer Peregrines Activity Blog, Special Edition- 28/04/2022

08:55 Good morning! Pretty exciting overnight, as the first chick hatched at a little after 8pm last night!

Within a couple of minutes, the Falcon began nibbling at the eggshell.

Blink and you miss it moment around 12:16am,

Then at 2:09am the Falcon moves the eggs around, and the hole in the second egg is visible for a brief moment:-

At 4:19 the Falcon takes a major piece of eggshell and eats it.

Early morning, shortly before 6am, the chick and eggs are left uncovered.

After a minute or so, the Tiercel comes in to take over.

Tiercel leaves and the Falcon feeds!

Brief spell on the nest for the Tiercel, then the Falcon returns to resume brooding/incubating.

08:57 At this point the Falcon is in place, largely relaxed and allowing her eye to drift shut. There is a bit of breeze which wafts a stray feather in the foreground. This comes from the prey she brought in for the chick’s first feed at about 6:14am.

9:04 The Falcon looks up, and appears to call a few times, then settles back again. Then she is looking up again, so perhaps the Tiercel is perched nearby. No calling this time.

9:09 She still seems very alert and looking around, Nothing visible on the inset screen.

9:15 The Falcon does a bit of preening of the inside of her wing.

9:19 Her head comes up again, and she stares out across the roof of the church. She yawns!

9:23 The Falcon is very alert, then she gets up and after a few seconds, moves off and leaves the chick in charge of the other two eggs!

9:25 The Tiercel comes in and gathers the brood together. He settles down, but gives occasional chirps , and continues to look out from the platform.

9:30 He continues to fidget as he struggles to provide cover, the usual problem for the Tiercel due to his size. The Falcon arrives with prey, and so the Tiercel leaves her to feed the chick.

9:31 The second egg shows the hole in the shell, and watching the live footage, the second chick can be seen moving inside.

9:37 Done feeding the chick, Mum takes the prey to the left side of the platform, and continues to feed, before taking the prey away and flying off. The Tiercel returns to resume brooding and incubating.

9:40 The Tiercel sits facing the camera, and appears to give occasional calls. His right eye closes for seconds at a time.

9:44 He seems very relaxed, with eyes closing almost alternately, then a shuffle which puts the two eggs under him at the front, with the hole very apparent in the left of the two. Presumably the chick is safely tucked at the back! His occasional chirps are possibly to the chicks.

9:47 Another shuffle round, and now the Tiercel is facing away from the camera. He continues to give occasional chirps.

9:52 The Tiercel is checking out a few stones. He is alert again and begins calling, so perhaps the Falcon is nearby.

10:01 The Falcon returns, scuffing the chick around as she gets herself settled! This time the chick is near the front, head forward. She has a second go at getting settled, then picks at one or two stones. She keeps shuffling and rotating, to finish facing away from the camera, and now the chick is at the back again!

10:07 She continues to struggle to get settled, and comes to rest facing the camera again. She looks intently at the stones, or she might be asleep I suppose! After a restless night, it would be no surprise!

10:26 The Falcon looks up briefly, then settles with her right eye shut. Then she is alert again, but soon relaxes again. Odd to see the one-eyed tracking going on!

10:31 She shuffles round to face East, and looks intently at stones. She has found a remnant of eggshell, which she picks at to recover calcium from the shell.

10:41 The Falcon revisits the fragment of eggshell. As she holds it up, it is just possible to see the chick underneath her. She has another shuffle, and turns away from the camera, facing North-East.

10:50 Another shuffle. The Falcon tucks her head down and appears to look underneath to check on the eggs. Still restless, she stands and moves round to face West before sitting again.

11:00 This session ends with the Falcon energetically picking at stones. Still one chick, but a second egg has a reasonable hole in it, through which some movement has been seen. To oblige us, the Falcon stands right up, to let us see!

11.00 Falcon has been on the nest since 10am. She is facing the camera and a breeze is flapping three white fluffy feathers stuck in the gravel.

11.07 Her eyes are looking upward, she's on edge, she gets off the eggs/ chick

11.08 She flies off. The chick sleeps between the two eggs. In the egg that has pipped you can see movement.

11.09 Tiercel flies in

11.10 He is chirruping and nestling into the nest. He settles facing the camera

11.19 Falcon returns, he flies off immediately. She settles facing left with blood on her beak from the meal she has just eaten

11.21 She shuffles and faces away. The white tips to her tail feathers show really well

11.42 She looks behind

12.09 She looks behind and then he lands into the box. He doesn't stop long and flies off

12.11 She looks about; her beak is still bloody.

12.14 She looks about

12.26 She shuffles and resettles facing right

12.29 She tucks her head into her right wing to snooze

12.35 She preens under her wing and then returns to snooze with her head tucked under the same wing

12.42 She is disturbed by something but then resettles

12.44 Her eyes look upward and she is following some movement

12.51 She is very alert, sitting up straight and looking about

12.52 She is less curious and anxious.

12.53 She rests

13.00 Falcon incubating. Had a brief check of the chick and eggs and shuffled herself down on them. a few small feathers from a recent feed are fluttering on the gravel.

13.07 She picks up and eats one of the feathers.

13.08 She checks the chick and eggs again and small pieces of shell become visible.

13.16 Tiercel arrives on platform and falcon leaves immediately. He is not finding it easy to cover the eggs and brood the chick.

13.19 The chick only has its head and upper body under the male so can be seen wriggling.

13.22 He tries again to cover it and eventually uses his beak to push it further under and settles down after a few minutes.

13.36 The falcon returns with what looks like recent kill. The Tiercel is initially reluctant to move but then he goes and she starts to feed the chick.

13.41 The falcon takes the kill and leaves. The chick is visible in the nest with the two eggs.

13.43 The tiercel returns and spends several minutes settling on the eggs and chick. 13.53 The falcon returns and the tiercel leaves. She settles down to brood and incubate, checking every few minutes. 13.59 Falcon starts pecking gravel. 14.01 She repositions the eggs and turns to face the back of the box briefly before returning to face the front again. She picks up a piece of shell but drops it. 14.15 She is briefly alert and watchful. 14.31 Resumes pecking the gravel for a few minutes. 14.36 She repositions the eggs and turns to face the front of the box again, providing a brief view of the enlarging hole in the second egg.

15.33 The second chick hatches! you can watch it happen here:

3.25 Chick is showing and a piece of shell visible

3.28 The shell is being eaten by the adult Female

It is so wonderful to see.

3.42 eating rest of the shell and seemed to move the chick around

3.58 some movement and doing some tidying up of gravel

4.09 Kill brought in and changeover, feeding chicks quite large chunks which the first chick is managing to swallow

16.14 the chicks are feeding well so amazing to see the 2nd chick eating so soon

16 15 chicks both in view eyes shut, not surprising after the amount of food they ate. Carcass has been removed

16 25 a bit of shuffling around

16 27 eating more of the shell

16 30 Calling out for mate, perhaps

16 31 has settled down

16 40 changeover

16 53 eating rest of shell

Thanks to todays volunteers- Debbie, Peter and Jan and Barbara.

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