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  • Writer's pictureChris

Tuesday 2nd June

9.00 and the nextbox is completely empty! No the chicks haven't fledged yet they are just wondering from the nestbox (and the view of the camera) around the church roof. This is good and normal practice as it allows them to develop their wing muscles to increase the chance of successful fledging.

9.11 The first sight of one of the chick (unable to identify but it looks like one of the tiercels) scurrying across the apex of the roof, left to right.

9.18 49, the presumed female chick, now causally walks in from the left and into the nest box, when she seeks some shelter form the sun. She is soon joined by chick 47 at 9;23am

9.29 48, the more active of the male chicks, can be seen on the church roof, calling to either his siblings or parents

9.31 As 48 flutters down the church roof, his siblings sit at the front of the nestbox watching his antics.

9.48 Both chicks in the nestbox (47 and 49) are startled by something to their left - probably their sibling; 48.

10.18 47 joins his sister (49) laying down at the front of the nestbox.

10.29 48 appears from the left and comes into the nest box for the first time in my shift. He appears to be looking for scraps of food at the back of the box but there isn't anything there for him. With all three of the chicks together you can still see that the female (49) remains behind her brothers in terms of plumage development despite her noticeable size difference (she is larger than the males as are all female raptors).

10.32 49 leaves the brothers at the front of the box and sits facing the back right hand corner like a naughty child.

10.41 All three chicks are positioned in a huddle at the front of the nest box attentively watching, what I assume to be a parent bird flying around the church, similar to spectators at Wimbledon following a tennis ball back and forth.  

10.45 49 causes a commotion, gets up and rushes to the back of the box, awaking her brothers in the process. The two brothers (47 and 48) stand up to see what the fuss is all about but soon settle back down again and are soon rejoined by 49.

11.00 All 3 chicks are in the nest box. The 2 males are lying down at the front and the female (49) lies down in the centre of the box. 11.12 Female sits up again. 11.13 One of the males sits up stretching. The other male stretches wings still lying down. 11.18 Female chick stretches her wings and lies down again. The one male still stood wanders back and settles down next to his sister. 11.23 The 2nd male lying at front gets up and walks over other male to back of box. 2nd male jumps up, but settles again. 11.24 All 3 are up. The 2 males at the front of the box, the female behind. The 1st male lies down again. 11.36 2nd male lies down with 1st at front of box. Female lying down at back of box. An adult Peregrine can be seen climbing up far end of roof to the ridge, where it stands. 11.40 Adult moves halfway down roof at far end. Female chick sits up. 11.41 One of the males sits up. 11.47 2nd male stretches and lies down again. The other male walks around back of box, and finds part of a carcass with wing attached. He stands on it and plucks some feathers. 11.51 2nd male gets up and stands on front edge of box. The 1st male continues to feed, although there doesn’t look to be a large amount of meat. The other 2 watch and 1st male tries to join in unsuccessfully. 11.56 2nd male moves back to front edge of box. Female preening. 1st male continues to feed. 12.01 2nd male moves back and takes carcass from 1st. He takes it to the front of the box, back to camera and feeds. Female lies down between the two males. 12.04 1st male tries to get back unsuccessfully. 2nd male takes it to back of box to feed. 1st male now sat at front of box. 12.06 Female up. 2nd male continues to feed as he moves the remains around the box for sometime. 12.20 2nd male finishes with carcass, and moves to stand at the front of the box with the other male, looking out. Female lies down at back of box. 12.40 One of males moves to back of box, then runs back to front, but lies down. 12.44 2nd male moves back and lies down by female. Female sits up. 12.50 Female settles down, and 2nd male moves to lie with her in a huddle. The adult is still halfway down far end of roof, not having moved since 11:40.

13.00 Nice to see all three juveniles tucked up. With mum or dad looking on. 

13.23 48 just woke up, will his brother and sister still fast asleep. 

13.35 Sister awakens, sits there keeping an eye out. 

13.41 49 starts calling out. 

13.48 47 awakens, can see the difference in sizes now. 

14.08 Big sis telling one of her brothers off. 

14.19 All three being very well behaved at the moment. 

14.36 Mum or dad, just flew away from the end of the run way. Hopefully for food. 

14.56 Female arrives with prey for the juveniles. 

15.00 End of shift. 

15.06 Female still being fed, 2 males at the front of box 

15.11 One male chick returns to be fed  15.16 Tiercel still feeding the female chick 15.18 One male returns for more food 15.23 Tiercel now feeding himself 15.25 Tiercel leaves 15.27 All 3 chicks resting 15.33 All 3 now sleeping  15.53 Female preening at the back of box 15.57 All sleeping again 16.07 One male wakes up and starts preening 16.19 Female now awake, male resting again 16.24 The other male now wakes  16.32 One male at the front of the box 16.34 Both males awake, one exercising wings at the front of the box 16.37 Male now wing flapping on the ridge outside the box, the other 2 looking on 16.39 Female exercising wings in the box 16.41 The male outside now out of view in front of the box 16.42 Male now back on the ridge 16.43 Both males now outside  16.50 Female on the edge of box at the front, both males now down the right hand side of the roof with female watching 17.00 Female still on her own in the box

17.09 The one  chick settles down to rest at front of right hand side of box

17.13 No  change since 17.09.

17.16 A second chick appears and goes to the back of the box and feeds on carcass.  The other one remains at the front. No numbers visible.

17.28 Chick at front alert  and preening. Stretches wings.

17.29. Front bird approaches carcass but doesn’t attempt to eat.

17.31 Back bird leaves carcass and goes to front with a bit of the carcass. Other one is still.

17.34 One at front alert

17.35 2 left -  together left hand side of box. One asleep, one alert.

17.36 - 38 One alert.

17.39 3rd chick appears - Group together on l.h. side.

17.49. All 3 alert in box  -  still

17.57 2 preening 1 resting

17.59 One calling.

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

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