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Sunday, 29 January 2012

Parliament January 28th

First visit of the year, I ended up rushing a bit even on a Saturday to make the dawn start, I made it in the end and located both birds roosting together on the Middle Tower at 7.30am, it was bloody cold, about 1 above but the sky was clear and promised a good day, this soon changed.
I was optimistic that I might get some hunting, especially after observing the Tiercels body actions, lots of head movement and position shifting. This proved correct when he launched himself north wards and left at speed, the light was still not good, I suspect he was trying to take a feral leaving roost. He returned about 3 minutes later, prey less but again adopted a similar position on Middle Tower. After 2 minutes he again left at speed, the same direction and I waited in the gathering light.
Even before I saw him returning I knew he had something just going by the Falcons reaction, she started to call repeatedly and her body actions took on an anxious stance as she ‘danced on the spot’.
He came into view with a feral and landed on Victoria Tower, she in the meantime had flown to the Tower and consequently took the prey straight off him, normal peregrine behaviour from the dominant female.
He adopted a nearby position to wait for the scraps, from his stance he had no intention of hunting again.

Tiercel waiting

I watched them both until the Falcon finished feeding at 8.34am, instead of relinquishing what remained of the prey she stashed it, the Tiercel did not go and feed, perhaps he was not hungry as yet.

Falcon about to stash prey



The pair at the stash site

Both then flew a couple of circuits around the Palace before landing near to each other, from behaviour it appeared both were going to ‘lay-up’ and so it proved.
Later in the morning I checked the new nest box, they have not entered it as yet, there has been no disturbance to the substrate, and neither are there any new talon marks on the landing ledge. I am now pretty sure that the previous talon marks on the ledge were made by one of last years juveniles getting curious. Next month will give more information, as it stands on behaviour; I suspect they will go straight over to the other nest site. The main thing is that they breed successfully where ever it may be, if they go to the other nest site they will be back in early July.



The pair ' laying up'

For good measure and showing that the Tiercel was showing territorial behaviour to Parliament a Carrion Crow was attacked and driven off, who knows?

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