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Saturday, 28 May 2011

Parliament Pair - Ringing

May 28th

Good news in the fact that not only have the juveniles been ringed, 2 males and a female, the camera position has also been moved, the footage is now a lot better with adults coming and going being observed. As I write this at 3.30pm, I have just been watching the Tiercel feeding the juveniles.

The footage is great and shows how all 3 juveniles are given an equal share, when they have had enough they simply reverse up or turn there back. They are now getting very big , exercising small wings is becoming very important now as they grow towards full size.

Old camera position - young now getting very big.Photo Nathalie Mahieu
For those not aware of fledging Peregrines on there 1st flight, they have a habit of grounding, in particular on days with not a breath of wind, they need this to give them uplift on there maiden flight. Last year at least 5 people covered the site at different times of the day from dawn to dusk, although 1 or 2 of the juveniles came down low, they eventually found there way back up after a day or 2, hunger is a great motivator. This year will be no different and a watch will start around fledging time, probably around the 2nd week in June.

I have picked up a few juveniles over the years that have grounded as have members of the London Peregrine Partnership, we have returned them to high points near the nest, without assistance many will fall prey to urban foxes or become road casualties. In the wilder rural areas many juveniles are lost on grounding and the mortality rate is around 30%.

With the new camera position, it will also give us an insight on prey species, although predominately feral pigeon in London, this time of year produces hordes of juvenile Starlings, I was at a site this morning and the Tiercel bought in 2.

Falcon bringing in prey at another site.

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