2018 – The Story

Video Snippets & Photos from 2018 Below:

11 July 2018 – Video: The bonding continues.

Video – The Bonding Continues: Even though the young are still dependent on the adults, almost immediately after the juveniles’ fledging, the adults were reasserting their bond. They frequently visit the nest box and have been seen scraping although there is no chance of a second brood this year. Below is a short section of an eight minute ‘stand-off’ where the female (at the back of the box) hardly moves in all this time and the male eventually flies off.

20 June 2018 – Photo: The juveniles.

Photo – Here’s Looking at You: The two juveniles pictured on the roof of St. Martins House on 20 June. They were very vocal most of the morning waiting to be fed. P7D is on the left.

20 June – Photo: The male brings in a Swift for the juvenile.

Photo – A Swift breakfast: On reviewing the tapes for 20 June, I noticed that the adult male had brought in a Swift – not the easiest prey to catch. This is not the best of screengrabs but you can clearly see the outline of a Swift being carried away by a juvenile.

18 June – Photo: The juveniles are seen around St Martins Square.

Photo – Juveniles are around the Cathedral: A quick trip into Leicester on the 18th to try and located the juveniles to confirm they both fledged successfully. P7D (above) was found quickly but PCF was a little more difficult. Eventually he was found hiding behind a large chimney pot, sheltering from the wind.

16 June 2018 – Video: The second juvenile leaves.

Video – Second Flight: The remaining juvenile manages his first flight in less dramatic fashion.

15 June 2018 – Photo: Juvenile P7D is found to have landed safely on a nearby roof.

Picture – Safe Landing: Juvenile found sitting preening on a nearby roof:

15 June – Video: P7D’s first flight in half speed.

Video – First Flight: Even more dramatic at half speed!

15 June 2018 – Video: P7D takes the first flight.

Video: First Flight: Not the most graceful of take offs.

7 June 2018 – Video: the juveniles strengthen their wing muscles.

Video – Wing Flapping: A short piece of wing flapping by the young at 8 times speed. They then settle down on the platform looking out over the city.

4 June 2018 – Video: P7D steals the Goldfinch from the male and will not let go.

Video – P7D Steals the Gold: The male arrives with a Goldfinch which is quickly snatched from him by the female chick P7D who takes it to the back of the box. She then runs away from the adult female and after a brief chase is allowed to pluck and eat it for herself. Think Keystone Cops/Benny Hill….

4 June 2018 – Video: whilst looking over the city, P7D is spooked by something and runs into the box.

Video – Chick is Spooked: Whilst sitting on the ledge preening, P7D looks up and notices something in the sky above her. She is obviously spooked as she scuttles into the back of the box where she remains, hardly moving, for the next 90 minutes.

2 June 2018 – Video: the juveniles start to stretch and flap their wings.

Video – Flap Fest: Both chicks are finding their wings and at every opportunity build up their strength.

31 May 2018 – Video: P7D feeds itself for the first time unaided.

Video – P7D Feeds Herself: For the first time, one of the chicks (P7D) finds a piece of prey, traps it in her talons and picks at it, eating the small pieces – feeding herself.

24 May 2018 – Photo: the two juvenile have been colour-ringed under licence. Both birds have been provisionally sexed. On the left is PCF, a male and his larger sister P7D on the right. Photo (c) Garry Barker.

The juveniles with their colour-rings. On the left is PCF, provisionally sexed as a male and his larger sister P7D on the right – also provisionally sexed. Photo (c) Garry Barker.

Our regular watchers will have noticed that the chicks are now sporting a little ‘bling’. They have been ringed under licence, including colour-rings. This will help us to identify them as individuals and follow their progress not only whilst at the Cathedral but when they eventually disperse and hopefully raise families of their own. Many thanks to Garry Barker and his team.

29 May 2018 – Video: getting ready to fly.

Video – Getting Ready to Fly: For the first time when wing flapping, P7D jumps into the air. She is getting stronger and more confident by the day. PCF imitates his sister.

29 May – Photo: the pin feathers on P7D are now visible.

Photo – Pin Feathers: For the first time P7D’s wing pin feathers are starting to show well.

25 May 2018 -Video: juveniles wing flapping.

Video – Wing Flapping: Wing stretching and flapping is becoming more common on a daily basis. This is P7D.

24 May 2018 – video: the female brings her chicks together out of the wind.

Video – Tough Love: The female again wants to get her chicks together to shelter them from the wind. One of the chicks has other ideas and refuses to go and gets dragged by the scruff of the neck – again!

22 May 2018 – Video: P7D does not want to go with mum.

Video – “But I Don’t Want To”: The female wants to get the chicks into the scrape where she can shelter them. However, one of the chicks has other ideas and refuses to go despite being dragged by the scruff of the neck! The female eventually gives up and ignores the chicks turning her back on it for over an hour!

21 May 2018 – Video: the juveniles starts to explore.

Video – Chicks go Walkabout: The chicks are finding their (rather large) feet and walking about the box, pecking at the stones, playing with feathers and looking for food.

Video – Chicks Eat Shell: The female pushes the empty egg shell towards the chicks who peck at it and one picks it up. Is she teaching them not to waste the calcium content or does she know that it is good for them?

17 May 2018 – Video: Synchronised Feeding.

Video – Synchronised Feeding: The male and the female side-by-side feeding the chicks. The male refused to give up his prey to the female.

17 May 2018 – Video: First Steps.

Video – First Steps: the largest chick walks across the scrape to get fed by the male – the longest distance either has managed so far.

17 May 2018 – Video: Wing flapping.

Video – Wing Flapping: the largest chick has found its wings and starts to exercise them.

17 May 2018 – Video: the male refuses to give the female his prey.

Video – I’ll Take My Prey Away: The female allows the male to feed the chicks but when she tries to take it from him, he takes off with it!

16 May 2018 – Photo: the first signs of proper developing wings.

Photo – Mum I’ve got Wings: All of a sudden the larger of the 2 chicks has the makings of wings. There might even be pin feathers starting to appear.

16 May 2018 – Photo: large appetites.

Photo – I’m Still Hungry: Despite having a very full crop, the largest of the 2 chicks is still hungry and wants to be fed.

16 May 2018 – Video: the male feeds the chicks watched by the female.

Video – I Want to Feed the Chicks: The male tries to feed the chicks under the watchful eye of the female before he is forced out.

15 May 2018 – Video: the male tries to steal an easy meal.

Video – Where do you think you’re going with that?: The male sneaks in to take the food that is stashed by the right hand column. The female see it happen and soon retrieves it.

15 May 2018 – Video: the female stops the male feeding the chicks.

Video – Tug-of-War 2: The male wants to feed the chicks but the female has other ideas!

15 May 2018 – Video: the male feeds the chicks and the female.

Video – Male Feeds Chicks: The male brings in an item of food and under the watchful eye of the female feeds some to the chicks, brooding beneath her, and the female too.

12 May 2018 – Video: the male brings in food but does not want to give it to the female.

Video – Tug-of-War: The male brings in food that he wants to feed the chicks but has a tug-of-war with the female and leaves with it!

11 May 2018 – Video: the male feeds the female.

Video – Male Feeds Female: Watch as the male brings in a small prey item (Starling) and tries to feed it delicately to the female before she takes it off him.

11 May 2018 – Video: the female is not happy with the male feeding the chicks.

Video – Mother is in Charge: The male is feeding the chicks with scraps. The female arrives and is not best pleased, she forces him out of the box. Watch her reaction at 18:05:37. I like how the chicks are sitting in a line with the unhatched egg at the front!

9 May 2018 – Video: chicks being fed in the middle of the night.
7 May 2018 – Video: the second chick hatches.
6 May 2018 – Video: the male takes his turn to feed the chick.
6 May 2018 – Video: The first meal.