Friday, 7 May 2021

A bundle of fluff!

 What appears to be a bundle of fluff is actually three newly hatched peregrine falcon chicks!

Here is a clip of their dad CR keeping an eye on them.

It's usually the female who does the brooding while the male brings in prey, so it is actually rather unusal to see dad doing this. 


 

Hatching

 All three eggs have now hatched!

Hatching took place on the 3rd and 4th of May.

Here is a video of CR brooding them, and you can see the chick just emerging from the egg nearest the camera.


 

Saturday, 24 April 2021

On the radio!

 I've been on the radio!

BBC Radio Gloucestershire got in touch for an interview, and I was happy to oblige.

You can hear it at HERE

Go to 45 minutes into the programme for my bit!

(It should remain available for a few weeks.)


You will hear from the programme that we now have three eggs.

Here is a photo of a changeover.

Hopefully, I'll be able to obtain some videos soon.

Friday, 9 April 2021

Incubation

 Incubation is well under way.

Here is Bella looking after her four eggs.

Only about 3 weeks to go now...


Monday, 5 April 2021

FOUR!!!

 There are now four eggs being incubated!

This is more than in any previous year, and if all goes well, it's going to be very crowded on the nesting tray in a few weeks time.

Here is Bella leving the tray on Easter Day revealing what she has been sitting on.


The times and dates that each egg was laid are :-

Egg #1 = 12:40 on 26/3/21

Egg #2 = 22:30 on 28/3/21

Egg #3 = 06:30 on 31/3/21

Egg #4 = 01:00 on 4/4/21

Saturday, 27 March 2021

Breeding season 2021 under way!

 The first egg of the 2021 breeding season has been laid, on or about the 26th March. This makes it the earliest that an egg has appeared on the Abbey tower.

 

If things follow the same way as in previous years, we can expect three eggs, laid about 2-3 days apart. Incubation is about 29-32 days from the day the last (or penultimate) egg is laid, so this will put hatching at about May 1st.

 Watch this space!

Friday, 5 March 2021

Bella getting comfortable

 Things are looking very promising for the 2021 breeding season.


Here is the female Bella on the nesting tray. After a little bit of scraping with her feet, she lay down and moved a few stones around.

Saturday, 20 February 2021

The WiFi link is operational.

 

As in previous years, I've set up a live video feed so that anybody in the churchyard to the east of the Abbey can watch the activity on the peregrine nesting tray.

As of March 26th, the peregrines are sitting on some eggs, and by the beginning of May, these should have hatched.
 
While the birds are sitting on the tray they are usually out of sight, so this is the only good way to see them.

(Note that the video is not available on the internet as there is no connection up the tower.)

Here are the setup instructions which have been tested on an Android phone and an iPad. Hopefully they will work for you too!
 
*** If you can get it to work on an i-phone, please let me know in the comments below. ***

With an internet connection (eg at home), go to the Google Play store (Android) or the App Store (iPad). Search for and install the application called KViewPro.

Now standing in the churchyard between the Abbey and the Gander Lane car park where you can see the nesting tray, search for and connect to the WiFi network called “Falcons”. The password is “peregrine”.

Now run the KViewPro application, choose "config" (or "device") and create a new device and set it up manually as follows :-

Device Name = tower
Login Type = IP/DOMAIN
IP Address = 192.168.2.2
Media Port = 9000
User Name = guest
Password = peregrine

Then select channel 1 and maximise the screen to get the best picture.

A word of caution.
These are wild birds who catch and kill other birds for food. Therefore there may be scenes which some may find upsetting. 

Donations.
If you want to donate to the project, please click HERE.
Remember to put the word "Peregrine" in the comments box!

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Both birds getting the tray ready

 The new gravel has been in place for just a few days, and both birds have been seen making a "scrape" in the stones.


 

Here are the male (CR) and then the female both getting it ready for the forthcoming breeding season.

(Apologies for the lack of sound. Hopefully this will be sorted out before too long.)


Friday, 12 February 2021

New Gravel!

 The nesting tray has been serviced!


 Today, the tray was taken back inside the tower and cleaned. After it was poked back through the louvres, it was provided with a brand new layer of gravel. The lack of gravel was probably the reason that last year's breeding season ended in failure.

Hopes are high for 2021. Both birds have been seen on the tower, indeed the male was on the tray just a few minutes before it was serviced.

Sunday, 31 January 2021

Peregrine update

 The lockdown has meant that getting material for this blog is not all that easy. I was able to nip out this morning for a short cycle ride in the winter sunshine.

Both birds were on the Abbey tower occasionally calling to each other.

Lets hope for a succesdsful breeding season this year.

 



Saturday, 21 November 2020

Two birds sighted!


 It's been difficult recently to get any photos of the peregrines from the video camera in the tower, however this morning I was lucky enough to be passing with my camera.

There are TWO peregrines in this photo - can you spot them?

 

In case you can't see them, here they are circled.

The female Bella is above on the lead drainage channel, and the male CR is at the bottom left on the stone ledge.

 

Sunday, 30 August 2020

A pair of peregrines

 Opportunities to see what the video camera has captured over the lockdown period have been very few and far between, but I did manage to recover the recorder this morning.

On reviewing the videos, it was nice to see that both Bella and CR were still very much in evidence and as you can see from this video clip, they are getting on just fine!


 Unfortunately, the sound isn't working, and the camera is too far back at the moment, cropping the top and bottom of the video. I need to get it properly set up again sometime...

Tuesday, 19 May 2020

Not this year....

The adult birds are still incubating, but it's now too late for the single egg to hatch.

It's now around 40 days, and it should have hatched after 32 days or so.


Sadly it must be infertile, as were eggs in 2018 and 2019. 

So I'm afraid that there won't be any peregrine chicks this year.

Saturday, 9 May 2020

Not long now


By my calculations, the egg should be hatching within a day or so.


Whilst on our cycle ride today, we were lucky to see a changeover of incubation duties with Bella leaving and CR starting his stint.

The above image is a screenshot on my phone from the live Wi-Fi video link.

Tuesday, 5 May 2020

An update

Having obtained special permission to go up the tower last week, the Wi-Fi link from the live camera was reinstated.

Here is a screenshot of the video taken tonight on my phone.


If you want to watch the video yourself, the instructions are the same as last year.

Click HERE for details.

Having studied the video footage, there is just one egg being incubated and it is due to hatch sometime around 8th-10th May, ie shortly!

Tuesday, 21 April 2020

Incubating!

While CR was bathing in the evening sunshine...


... his mate Bella was on the cold side of the Abbey tower....

... INCUBATING!

Friday, 27 March 2020

Lock-down up-dates

We may be on lock-down, but the peregrines are carrying on with their lives regardless!

Updates from the video camera in the tower will be very few and far between from now on, so the only pictures will be from the churchyard below.

Here is a lovely photo taken by Jay Banbrooke of CR in flight on the left and Bella standing on the top of the tower.


I will try to keep this page as up to date as possible, but in the circumstances this will be difficult.

Thursday, 5 March 2020

In case you were wondering....

How are our peregrines getting on so far in 2020?


Just fine!

I put some more gravel in the tray the other day, but they've already lost some of it overboard.

Thursday, 23 January 2020

An Evening with Iolo Williams

The GRMG have been fantastic in their support of the peregrines at Tewkesbury Abbey.

They are organising this event on February 19th at Cheltenham Town Hall.
Please support them too!


Tuesday, 24 December 2019

Happy Christmas!

I've put a bit of gravel on the tray to make the peregrines feel at home for Christmas!

It will need topping up with some more gravel once the birds have stopped throwing it over the edge!

It's a bit early for a proper courtship display, but this shows that they are getting on well together.


Everything is looking good for the 2020 breeding season.

Sunday, 22 December 2019

Where's all the gravel gone?

Peregrines don't make a nest like many birds. They simply make a scrape in whatever material there is.

To this end, I put some gravel (actually smooth sided shingle from a local garden centre) in the tray. 

Last year's spent gravel was removed some months ago, but I haven't replenished it as we were hoping to replace this old wooden tray. Unfortunately due to circumstances beyond my control, the new tray will have to wait for another year.

Here is the male Christopher Robin (CR) wondering where the gravel has gone!


Don't worry, it will all be back in a few days!

Sunday, 8 December 2019

Midwinter courtship


This is usually a very quiet time of the year for the peregrines, so it was really great to see both birds on the nesting tray displaying to each other.


Plans to replace this old tray in time for the 2020 breeding season have had to be postponed. This means that the tray will now need servicing and new gravel added. Hopefully this will be done over the next few weeks.

Thursday, 7 November 2019

A busy few days!

After a few very quiet weeks, the last few days have suddenly seen a good variety of birds visiting the nesting tray.

Here is a Great Tit...

...and a Pied Wagtail.

And here is a special visitor...
A Black Redstart.

This is quite a rare bird, with only about 400 birds in the country, according to the RSPB web site. It's not the first time one has been seen at the Abbey at this time of the year, but it is a privilege to see such a lovely little bird feeding on insects on the tray.

And the Abbey's peregrines are still in evidence too. Here is Bellatrix, the female.

Let's hope she doesn't get to see the Black Redstart....!

Sunday, 27 October 2019

Still around

Both peregrines are around, which at this time of year is a really good sign for next year's breeding season.

Here is a clip of the female Bellatrix landing on the nesting tray, calling to the male CR who is out of sight to the camera.


The reason there isn't any gravel in the tray is that we are (hopefully) going to replace it before the breeding season gets under way. If it doesn't happen this year, then it will definitely happen next!

This is going to cost around £500 in total. Details of how to contribute will be published shortly. Watch this space!