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  • Writer's pictureChris

Tuesday 19th May 2020

9.00 All three chicks in the corner of the nestbox looking very full

10.51 First sign of an adult bird. The female comes into the nestbox and checks on the chicks but doesn't bring in any prey

10.54 The Falcon doesn't stay in long  and leaves the chicks

11:00 The three chicks are huddled on their own at the back of the nest box in the left hand corner. Their heads are tucked in and they doze.

11.10 The chick at the back sits up and stretches. It is no 48.

11.14 48 settles down again.

11.26 48 sits up at the back again, wide awake.

11.28 49, at the front, is awake now and sits up, then settles down again. 47 on the left side is woken up and sits up and grooms.

11.33 All 3 chicks are sat up. 47 then settles on front left, 48 at the back, and 49 grooms sitting up.

11.38 49 tries to settle, wakes up 47. They both sit grooming.

11.40 47 settles, 49 still sat up.

11.42 49 wakes 47 again. They both groom.

11.43 They settle down. 49 still awake, but huddled over other two.

11.50 They all finally settle and doze.

12.01 48 at the back awake and sits up grooming. 47 at front sits up. 49 still trying to sleep on right.

12.05 47 settles back down. 48 crashes down over the other two, waking 47 again, who sits up.

12.07 All 3 settle down. 48 has turned to face back left corner with 49. 47 at front lying down but awake.

12.17 47 turns and huddles over other two.

12.46 48 at back stretches and sits up and grooms.

12.47 All 3 up. 48 defecates out front. They huddle.

12.52 49 defecates. They all sit up.

12.53 They huddle. 49 is at the back, 48 to the left as 47 pushes through them to the back corner. 49 moves to the centre back, then moves back.

12.55 All three are sat up, stretching and flapping wings. They jostle in the corner.

13.01 Shift now starting, all 3 chicks getting restless.  13.19 Two chicks fast asleep, other one having a good preen. 

13.22 All fast asleep, so peaceful. 

13.36 Both parents arrive together. Tiercel quickly departs, leaving the female feeding her chicks. 

13.40 Female plucking away, feathers galore in the nest box. 

13.41 Chick takes huge piece from mum, finds it hard swallowing it. 

13.43 Middle chick takes to much. 

13.47 Right hand chick, certainly is hungry.

13.48 Feeding time over, female departs, leaving the chicks home alone. 

13.52 Chicks disappear in the shade, out of the afternoon sun. 

14.16 Can see the chicks are gradually getting their flight feathers.

14.27 All quiet on the western front, with the chicks stuck away in the back of the box. 

15.00 End of shift, been very quiet since their last feed at 13.48. Two chicks just woke up. 

15.29 Looking intently out of the box

15.32 Tiercel brings food 

15.38 One chick briefly tries to hold a piece of food in its foot to tear bits off, view quickly obscured by tiercel.

15.43 One chick consumes a leg and foot whole

15.44 Tiercel plucks carcass more   

15.48 Feeding again

15.52 One chick still being fed

15.56 Tiercel feeding himself, different chick comes back for more

16.00 Tiercel removes remains, chicks alone 

16.01 Tiercel returns, picks up bits on the gravel to offer to chicks, eats a leg and foot himself  (photo)

16.04 Tiercel leaves again 

16.08 Chicks dozing

16.30 All dozing still 

16.50 Chicks waking 

16.54 Live feed vanished for a minute at this point

17.00 Chicks dozing and preening  

17.06 1 of 2 joined the other one.

17.11 Quite a lot of preening going on, on and off. I think it was 49 (female) who was alert for a lot of the time during the hour  looking out of the box

17.12 Same bird was standing straight up. Very alert.

17.18 All three together now in top right corner. At one point all 3 peering out.

17. 20 One calling. Bit of shuffling.

17.25 Stayed in this position with a more shuffling and 49 still very much on the alert

17.35 Very amusing watching 49 (I think) following the movement of a fly.

17.40 - 18.00 Very little action during this time.

Thank you to Mike Harmer, Nick Kimber, Graham Long, Stephanie Witham and Sue Wells for todays blog

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