Friday 16th of April 2021
Thanks to today's volunteers for this blog: Val and Nick, Graham, Debbie and Stephanie.
8.58 As I switch on the Falcon is screeching on the edge of the box and immediately takes off. There is a lot more screeching from her off-camera, with the sound of the Tiercel in the distance. 8.59 AS the church bells chime nine, there is more shouting from both Peregrines. As I switch to the other view, the Tiercel is sitting atop a turret with prey in his left talon, but not showing any real interest in it. 9.01 He stretches his wings. He calls and the Falcon responds. 9.02 The Falcon is calling vigorously, but the Tiercel is unresponsive. 9.04 The Tiercel has his wings stretched in front of him – he appears to be enjoying the sunshine. 9.05 He occasionally turns his head – maybe attracted by the movement of a gull that can be seen flying in the background. 9.06 The Falcon is calling again. 9.08 Breakfast time! He starts to pluck the prey, holding it with his right talon, but it turns out he isn’t actually hungry so he doesn’t eat it. 9.09 A gust of wind nearly has him off balance. Suddenly he flies off with the prey. 9.11 The camera pans round all the turrets, giving a view of the sea with blue sky and fluffy clouds. 9.29 Dong! 9.38 Peregrines calling but no sign of them on either camera. 9.40 Again, invisible Peregrines calling. 9.48 Distant calling. 9.57 Distant calling. 9.59 The bells chime ten. No sign of either Peregrine, but there is a lot of calling nearby. 10.01 More loud screeching. 10.02 A second Peregrine can be heard further away. 10.03 They are calling to each other. 10.04 It sounds as if there is a Peregrine calling close to the nest box, but they are both remaining stubbornly out of view! 10.07 The screeching has continued almost ceaselessly – the sound from the speakers is really spooking my dog!! 10.10 They have continued to call intermittently. 10.12 Gull calling – it makes a change from the Peregrines. 10.13 The Peregrines are still calling. 10.16 After a few minutes’ rest, a Peregrine calls again. 10.17- 10.18 All quiet. 10.19 A bit of screeching. 10.21-10.32 And some more. 10.33-10.43 Not a sound to be heard. 10.44 A Peregrine’s call can be heard. 10.46 More calling. 10.47 Clucking and screeching. The Tiercel lands on the nest platform and makes his way to the scrape with a few clucks and squeaks. 10.48 He does a bit of house-keeping – moving a few bits of gravel, and then does a bi of scraping, facing away from the camera. Surely that scrape is deep enough now? 10.49 He is messing about with the gravel – possible eating it? He faces the front of the box and does a bit more scraping. 10.50 Then a bit more gravel rearrangement. Gradually turning clockwise so that he is now facing north. 10.51 Now facing the front of the platform, he looks quite fluffed up. He walks to the front of the platform, sits on the edge and has a shake before tucking his left talon up into his feathers. 10.52 He is watching the world go by. 10.53 Not much for him to see, might as well have a doze – his left eye closes. 10.54 Watching again, occasionally turning his head. 10.59 The clock strikes 11. The Peregrine sits there impassively.
11.00, Good morning all, now taking over from Val + Nick with Henry perched on the front of the nest box. Thanks to Julia and Brendon for the id.
11.10, A beautiful day in Cromer with dogs barking in the background
11.18, Henry awakens has a quick nosey around before falling asleep
11.22, Henry awakens moves to the back of the box to his scrape and starts taking in stones for his digestion, finishes then moves back to the front of the nest box and starts preening his chest feathers, whilst the church bells strike on the half hour
11.36, Henry wide awake becomes very aware of what's going on around him making me believe that Poppy was around
11.56, He begins cleaning his talons, then start to maintain his scrape as the bells toll at midday
12.14, Henry shows of his flexibility by preening his back feathers
12.17, At last Poppy arrives lots of Courtship between the two of them with Poppy's backside facing the camera
12.18, Henry leaves, with Poppy holding onto the fort
12.24, thanks to Julia letting us know that Henry was on the fleur de lis eating prey
12.30, as the bell strikes on the half hour, Poppy sits halfway in the nest box preening, then moves further back to her scrape. She's not very settled as she sits upright having a good look around
12.36, at last Poppy settles down, wings stretched out wide taking in the beautiful Cromer sunshine
12.46, Poppy still spread eagled, still enjoying the sun
12.57, Poppy had enough of sun bathing, starts maintaining her scrape
13.00, end of shift, handing over to Debbie
1.00 Poppy in the scrape, wings outstretched to cool off or absorb the sun, she pecks at gravel and is facing away from the camera
1.06 Poppy is pecking at and preening the feathers on her back
1.14 She has turned around and is in the scrape but facing the camera and the sun
1.17 Lots of gravel pecking
1.19 She is settled in the scrape
1.26 Poppy comes to the front of the nest box
1.28 Poppy flies off......now there are no peregrines to observe
1.29 Calling off camera
1.52 Calling off camera
1.55 Lots of calling off camera
2.00 Henry arrives at the nest box, squeaks, scrapes, and pecks at gravel
2.03 He comes to the front of the box and shakes
2.08 He preens in full sun looking relaxed
2.23 Henry is half asleep
2.23 Camera scans to find Poppy on a church ledge, she is still and half asleep too
2.38 Poppy preens
2.45 Henry calls and goes to scrape, rearranges gravel
2.49 Both birds react slightly to noisy low-level aircraft, ie alert and watching
2.50 Henry preens
2.59 Poppy stretches / Henry calls
3pm Female at front of nestbox, dozing, watching and occasionally calling.
3.07 Still at the front of the box, calling briefly then dozing.
3.14 Still not moving, just dozing in the sun.
3.18 Woken by noisy gulls and calls again.
3.19 Stretches each leg in turn and then left wing before calling again.
3.21 Looking around and calling.
3.22 Preening chest feathers, then leaves.
3.40 Returns to box, standing in the centre and pecking at stones. Turning, crouching and pushing stones backwards with feet
3.41 Preens back, then front.
3.42 Stands more upright facing front, still in centre of the box.
3.43 Turns to face back. More stone moving to deepen depression.
3.44 Standing and facing front right.
3.45 Preening feathers on left, now turning head over right shoulder and preening back,
3.48 Still preening
3.50 Sitting quietly in the centre facing front.
3.51 Picking at stones, turning to back of box, moving stones with feet again and settling in hollow facing right
3.55 In hollow and dozing in shaded area.
3.59 Tiercel heard calling outside.
4.03 Tiercel sttill calling, female still resting.
4.06 Female alert but still in hollow.
4.07 Dozing again.
4.08 Pecking at stones in front of her.
4.09 Gets up, facing front still pecking at stones. Turnes to peck stones on left side of box
4.10 Goes to front left of box and looks out. Stays there.
4.12 Preening, still in front left of box.
4.20 Still preening in the sunny front left of box.
4.23 Sitting quietly, still in front left. Female leaves.
4.44 Tiercel standing at right of box looking at hollow. Turns in the hollow and sits.
4.45 Turns towards back standing on hollow.
4.46 Comes to front and looks around standing on front ledge.
4.52 Still in the same position watching out or dozing in turn.
5pm Still on lookout duty.