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Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Sunday and Charring X Hospital

Sunday February 3rd

I went back at dawn to the site where we fitted the new Nestbox on Friday, as I said in my previous post I am optimistic for this site, hopefully the peregrines fill the same way and will not totally ignore it.Anyone who has been involved in wild urban peregrines will know that they are far from predictable, sometimes the obvious solutions to a better nest site can and are sometimes ignored even if you think it is ideal.

But by and large they usually accept Nest Trays and Boxes, as Nathalie recently mentioned on Twitter it is not always straight away. In the last week I have placed 2 Nestboxes and a Tray, will they take to them, much depends on what other options they have available in the way of ledges and niches.

On Sunday I watched the pair from dawn having not seen how the nestbox looks visually from the outside, although they never went in it, both Tiercel and Falcon both flew in front of it, it is on a ledge they use and obviously this ledge now looks different. The Tiercel in particular was very curious, hanging in the wind and passing the ledge a number of times, legs were down, I suspect he knew I was watching, just wasn’t going to make it that easy. Watch this space…..

Charring X Hospital

On Wednesday 6th I headed over to Nathalie’s site which she monitors after we arranged with Industrial Abseiling and Charring X Hospital to access the ledge, clean the balcony and replace the substrate.
Having already used the Company to place a tray at another London site on Monday, I have to say they did an excellent job on both sites, on the balcony at Charring X work was watched by both peregrines sitting over on Novotel.
I am glad to say that the cameras will again be working this year tying in with Barnes Wetlands, the HD images provided by Simons Wildlife Whisperer site and Huw Edwards’s icode site providing the cameras were stunning last year. Much of this was down to Nathalie putting in a lot of time editing the video.

The lads from Industrial Abseiling getting ready

The ledge on arrival was flooded, the drain on the ledge is slightly raised, probably about 20mm, consequently water lays on the Balcony and does not drain off unless it goes higher than 20mm, below it the water just lays there until it is dried out by the sun. 

A water logged ledge

The lads firstly got rid of most of the ‘natural’ debris that accumulates on a peregrine nest site and then proceeded to sweep most of the water away. After this they removed all the old substrate from the box and replaced with new, additionally giving her a new scrape central to the box and under the camera. 

Clearing the ledge

Water  and debris removed

New substrate and scrape

The camera again will shortly be up and running once all the technical stuff is finished, some peregrines sites in London are already showing signs that they may lay early, hopefully a good year again. 

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