Daily Commentary

Here is a diary of the Leicester Peregrines activities. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

Jim Graham: jsgraham83@aol.com

NOVEMBER

15 November – The male arrives at 4:15 and stands on the platform looking over the city moving to the ledge at 5:00. He flies off at 7:20 being replaced by the female 10 minutes later. She is off at 7:45 and he returns at 7:55 with a full crop leaving at 8:35. The male returns at 12:20, goes into the box and is followed immediately by the female. There is calling and posturing. After a few minutes the male sits on the ledge. The female makes a scrape, moves some stones around and then joins her mate on the opposite ledge. They fly off in unison at 13:45. The male is back an hour later with an item of prey but leaves on the arrival of the female a few moments later. The female goes into the box and spends some time making scrapes. At 14:50 the juvenile arrives. The female is in her hunched posture and stares at the juvenile that surprisingly is not making any begging calls. He sits on the ledge looking out. After a few minutes he walks towards the female and calls but she stands firm and does not move. He goes back to the ledge. The juvenile flies off and the female walks onto the ledge and looks out. She is joined by the adult male at 15:10. They remain there until the female leaves at 16:00 followed by the male at 16:50. There is no further activity today.

14 November – The male arrives at 6:25, leaves briefly at 7:20 and is joined by the female a few minutes later. There is posturing and calling. The female sits on the ledge whilst the male takes a short flight. On his return he goes into the box before flying off at 7:50. The female leaves at 8:10. They return in unison at 8:30, the female sits on the ledge and the male in the box but takes a short flight 5 minutes later before leaving at 8:40. He is back briefly at 9:25 and again at 9:30. The female takes a short flight at 10:00 and both birds return at 10:05, the male leaving after a few moments. He is back at 10:20. The female goes into the box and makes a scrape and moves some stones before returning to the ledge. The male sits on the opposite ledge until flying off at 10:55. He is back at 11:05, flying off 30 minutes later. The female remains on the ledge and is joined again by the male at 12:45 taking a brief flight a few minutes later. Both birds fly off at 13:00 but the male returns after a few moments and is off and back again, calling agitatedly. He sits on the platform looking out but leaves again at 13:05 returning after a few minutes. Yet another short flight is taken at 13:10 and is off at 13:15. Returning at 13:25 he is off after a few minutes and back at 13:40. At 14:00 he leaves for 15 minutes. It is the female that returns at 14:25 and leaves at 14:30. The male is back at 15:05 with the female returning 10 minutes later and goes into the box before settling on the ledge. The male sits in the box behind the columns. At 15:35 they both leave with the male returning 10 minutes later remaining until 17:30. There is no further activity today.

13 November – The female arrives at 1:00 and promptly falls asleep when she is awoken by the arrival of the male. There is posturing and quiet calling. After a few moments, the female picks up the prey stashed behind a column and walks onto the platform with it – the male leaves. She plucks at the item and the male is back briefly at 6:10 but leaves on the arrival of the juvenile that leaves immediately! The female continues to pluck the prey (which in daylight looks to be a Green Sandpiper) and the male is back at 6:25 but is forced off the ledge by the female. After plucking, she does not appear to be making any attempt to eat the prey but holds on to it whilst looking out over the city. The male is back at 7:20 and goes into the box. She holds on to her prey, protectively. She leaves with her prey at 7:25. The male makes a short flight at 7:30 and sits on the ledge. The female rejoins him at 9:00. At 10:25, the female decides she wants the other side of the ledge and the male flies off returning to the opposite side – a wise decision. The remain there until 12:00 when they fly off in unison. The male is back a few minutes later leaving after an hour. He returns at 13:15 and sits on the ledge until 14:30 when he flies off. The female returns at 15:25 and remains on the ledge falling asleep at 17:05. She is awake again at 18:40, has a preen, looks for stashed prey (there is none) then flies off into the night. She returns at 19:45 with a fresh prey item which she starts to pluck then flies off with 5 minutes later. There is no further activity this evening.

12 November – The male arrives at 5:25 remaining on the ledge until 6:35 when he takes a short flight. He calls quietly for a few moments on his return. He is replaced by the female at 6:55. She swaps ledges at 7:05 and the male arrives 5 minutes later going into the box. There is calling between the pair. He flies off at 7:15 but is back a few minutes later but is off again at 7:20 followed by the female at 7:25. The male returns at 7:45 takes a quick flight at 8:00 and is then joined by the female who goes into the box. She makes a scrape in the stones and there is some calling between the pair. The male sits on the platform with his back to the female who then moves onto the ledge and the male flies off. He is back 5 minutes later and goes into the box ‘hiding’ behind the central columns before leaving ay 8:25. He returns at 8:55 and sits on the opposite ledge to the female venturing into the box at 9:25 where he calls quietly before returning to the ledge. He takes a short flight at 10:00 and again at 10:40. He is off again at 10:50 quickly followed by the female. The return together 5 minutes later and go into the box calling and posturing. The female scrapes in the stones before returning to the ledge whilst the male sits on the platform. He flies off for a few minutes at 11:05. Something catches their eyes and the fly off in unison at 11:25. The male is back at 11:30 but takes another short flight 10 minutes later. He is off for another short flight at 12:45. He leaves at 12:55. The female returns at 13:10 and sits on the ledge. At 13:50 she walks onto the platform, picks at the stones, walks into the box before returning to the ledge. She flies off at 14:33. There is no further activity today.

11 November – The male arrives at 5:15 moving into the box at 5:45 and back 15 minutes later. He flies off at 6:55 but is back a few minutes later followed by the juvenile calling. The adult soon leaves with the juvenile quickly following. The juvenile is back for a few moments at 7:45. The male returns at 8:25 and goes into the box and then onto the platform looking over the city. He picks at a few scraps lying around before flying off at 9:10 to be replaced by the female. The male is back at 9:40 and the female goes into the box. There is calling and posturing for a few moments, then the female moves to the ledge before flying off. The male swaps ledges at 10:15 and moves into the box at 10:20 upon the arrival of the female returning to the ledge after a few minutes. He takes a short flight at 11:15 and flies off at 12:15 followed by the female 5 minutes later. The male is back 10 minutes later and is soon joined by the female. The male flies off briefly at 12:30 and leaves at 12:45. He is back at 13:10 until 13:35 and is soon followed by the female. He returns at 14:30 and goes into the box 15 minutes later on the arrival of the female. She then moves into the box and there is a brief moment of posturing and calling before he returns to the ledge. The female remains in the box moving a few stones and scraping returning to the ledge at 14:50. The male leaves 5 minutes later. He is back at 16:40 and both adults go into the box where there is posturing and calling. The male flies off after 5 minutes and the female moves to the ledge. She flies off at 17:00 and the male arrives a few moments later calling and is joined by his mate. She sits on the ledge whilst he ‘hides’ behind the central columns before moving top the ledge at 17:45. He flies off at 18:25 and she leaves at 19:35 but returns 15 minutes later with a prey item which she plucks and eats before flying off with the remains at 20:00. There is no further activity this evening.

10 November – The male arrives at 5:20, flying off at 6:00 being replaced by the female. The male returns at 6:30, leaves 15 minutes later and is back at 7:00. Both adults remain on the ledge until 8:30 when the female changes sides and forces the male into the box before moving to the opposite ledge. He flies off at 9:00 returning at 10:05 taking a short flight at 10:10. He goes into the box at 10:45 not returning to the ledge until 12:15, flying off 5 minutes later. He is back at 12:25 and goes into the box calling. The female replaces him in the box and he sits on the platform. She creates a few scrapes in the stones before returning to the ledge. He moves to the ledge at 13:25. The female flies off at 13:50 and the male goes into the box calling. The female is back at 14:00 and they sit on opposite ledges. She flies off at 15:20 and he follows 5 minutes later. He returns at 16:25, goes into the box, then onto the ledge at 17:00, flying off 20 minutes later. There is no further activity today.

9 November – The male arrives at 5:50 and sits on the platform looking out. The female arrives at 6:50 and goes into the box. After a few minutes of calling, she goes and sits on the ledge. The male flies off 5 minutes later. He lands briefly at 7:10 then returns at 7:15 as the female flies off. He goes into the shelter of the box at 7:20 and is on the ledge at 7:45 flying off 10 minutes later. The female arrives with prey at 8:00. She already has a full crop and this looks like the remnants of her meal. She makes no attempt to eat until 8:15 and stops after 10 minutes. She stashes the remains in the back of the box in an area not used before. The male arrives at 8:50 goes into the box, picks up the prey and flies off with it. At 9:05 the male arrives with the prey followed by the juvenile. Both parents fly off leaving the juvenile with the meal. It appears the juvenile is still partially reliant on the adults for food. A few moments later, the male does a fly past. The juvenile finishes eating at 9:30 and sits on the ledge, flying off 5 minutes later. He is back at 12:50 and picks at the prey for 10 minutes before settling on the ledge. The male is back at 13:10 and picks up a discarded wing from a previous meal. The juvenile is calling loudly but leaves at 13:15. The male retrieves the remains left by the juvenile and finishes it off before sitting on the ledge at 13:35. The female returns at 14:45 and the male goes into the box. She has a full crop. After a few minutes calling they change places until she sits on the opposite ledge 10 minutes later. However, the male leaves after a few moments and is quickly followed by the female although she is soon back. The male arrives soon after and then a few moments later the juvenile tries to land on the female but she fends it off. The two adults go into the box and there is posturing and calling. The female then picks at the wing the male was working on earlier and the male sits on the ledge. At 16:20, the male goes into the box and is joined by the female a few moments later. The male then moves to the ledge until he is knocked off by the arrival of the juvenile at 16:35. The male is then back on the opposite ledge and the juvenile walks into the box forcing the female out who knocks the male from the ledge. The juvenile returns to the ledge and there is calling between it and the female. The female flies off after a few minutes, the juvenile following soon after. The male is back at 16:40 but leaves after 10 minutes. The female returns  a few moments later and is joined by the male who sits on the ledge whilst the female goes into the box moving to the ledge at 17:15. The female changes ledge at 17:50 forcing the male into the box before deciding to leave. The female remains until 22:20. The final action for the evening.

8 November – The rogue male remains until 3:40 when he flies off. The resident male is on the platform at 6:45 and is joined by the female a few minutes later. There is calling and posturing as she goes into the box. He looks out and she walks to the ledge. He sits in the box with the columns between them. At 6:55 she suddenly takes off and he runs to the ledge and looks out over the city. He follows a few moments later. He is back at 7:40 and sits on the ledge. At 9:00 the female arrives and goes into the box. They call quietly and she moves to the ledge. At 10:00 she takes a quick flight and on her return he goes into the box. There is calling and posturing and he ‘hides’ behind the column then is back on the ledge 10 minutes later. He flies off at 10:35 and she leaves at 11:00. The female is back at 11:25 and he immediately joins her. She goes into the box and calls loudly whilst he sits on the ledge. After a few minutes she sits on the opposite ledge. He flies off returning a few minutes later and goes into the box and stands behind the column. She swaps sides and he remains in the box, flying off at 12:00. She leaves 35 minutes later and is back at 15:45 with a full crop. The male arrives at 16:50 and goes into the box. There is lots of calling. He flies off at 17:00 whilst she falls asleep and remains until 19:40.

7 November – The male arrives at 4:45, remaining until 6:30 when he flies off. He returns at 7:15 but is gone 5 minutes later. He is back again at 11:05 and goes into the box calling before returning to the ledge and leaving at 11:30. The female arrives 10 minutes later with a full crop and sits on the ledge. At 11:50 she goes into the box for a few moments and calls, then returns to the ledge still calling. She is looking out over the city. She changes sides at 12:00 and it is very windy. She is blown off the ledge on a couple of occasions. The male is back calling at 12:45 and the female goes into the box calling before they both fly off together a few moments later. They were looking around intently prior to taking off – an intruder in the area? The female returns at 13:25 calling again she walks onto the platform, then returns to the ledge, swapping sides a few moments later. The male arrives at 13:40 there is posturing and calling quietly. He flies off after 10 minutes returning at 14:05. Both adults remain on the ledge until 16:40 when the male leaves. The female does not leave until 19:50. What appears to be the rogue male is on the ledge for a few minutes at 22:35. He returns after a short flight then remains until midnight at  least.

6 November – The male arrives at 5:05 and sits on the ledge. He remains until 6:35 when he flies off. He is back 10 minutes later and is joined by the female. There is calling and posturing and he goes into the box. After a few moments they change places and he goes onto the ledge. She then walks to the opposite ledge and he flies off. He returns at 8:05 and he goes into the box before walking onto the platform and picking at a few scraps of prey that have been left. The female flies off at 8:10, the male following after 5 minutes. He is back at 8:20 and goes into the box before returning to the ledge looking out over the city. He is back in the box and 9:00, it is breezy but a little more sheltered there but moves onto the ledge at 9:10 until he is displaced by the female at 9:30 and he flies off. He is back an hour later. They leave simultaneously at 10:45 heading in the same direction. The female returns at 12:15. The male is back at 14:50 and the female goes into the box with him on the ledge. The swap places after a few minutes and he takes a short flight at 14:55 but flies off 5 minutes later. The male returns at 16:15 and the female goes into the box. She moves some stones around and makes a scrape before returning to the ledge and he goes into the box. She flies off at 16:30 and he goes to the ledge and follows her 5 minutes later. There is no further activity this evening.

5 November – The male arrives at 3:55 and sits on the ledge. At 4:10 he notices the remains of the Woodcock on the platform and walks towards it and picks it up and starts eating. At 4:30 he has finished and is back on the ledge. At 4:50 he moves to the middle of the platform and then the opposite ledge. He runs into the box on the arrival of the female at 5:10. There is calling and posturing and she leaves 5 minutes later, he returns to the ledge. He takes a short flight at 6:20 and again at 7:10. He flies off at 7:25 returning at 7:45 with a full crop. He takes off at 8:10 and is back at 8:30. He is off again at 8:55. There is then a gap of over 3 hours before he returns at 12:05 but leaves after just a few minutes. He is back again at 16:50 leaving 10 minutes later. There is no further activity today.

4 November – the juvenile remains until 5:20 when he flies off. The male arrives at 7:00 with an item of prey. There is nothing left by 7:15 an he sits on the ledge with a full crop. He remains alone on the ledge until the female arrives at 10:45. He goes into the box calling whilst she settles on the ledge. After a few minutes they swap places and there is a lot of calling and posturing. The female decides she wants the position on the ledge and the male runs into the box. He appears to ‘hide’ behind the central column remaining there until 12:15 when he takes a short flight and returns to the ledge. He picks a few scraps that are lying around. Both adults remain on the ledge until 13:40 when first the male and then the female fly off. The male is back with an item of prey (a Redwing) 15 minutes later. He leaves with it at 14:10 returning with the same item at 30 minutes later. No sooner has he landed than the juvenile arrives, snatches the item from him and the adult flies off. Strangely, after taking a few pecks at the prey, he ignores it and goes and sits on the opposite ledge. His crop does not look full and at 14:45 he flies off. There is no further activity today.

3 November – The male arrives at 6:20 and is joined by the female a few minutes later. She goes into the box and there is calling and posturing. She then collects a piece of prey from the stash and the male flies off. When she has finished, there is a little left over and she stashes the remnants and sits on the ledge until 6:50 when she flies off. She is replaced by the male 5 minutes later and he goes into the box returning to the ledge 5 minutes later. At 7:25 he decides the stashed meal needs eating and starts feeding on it (in day light it appears to be a Fieldfare). He stashes the remains in the opposite corner and sits on the ledge. He moves into the box on the arrival of the female at 10:25 there is calling and posturing. After a few minutes they swap places and he then takes a short flight. She goes onto the ledge and he returns. She drags the remnants of the Woodcock along the platform as they swap ledges. They both sit there, looking over the city. At 10:50 they both take off in haste in the same direction. He is back within a few moments and stares out over the city. At 11:00 he loses interest and picks up the stashed Fieldfare and starts eating. He leaves on the return of the female at 11:15. The male is back at 12:30 and bounces into the box calling. The female is more interested in the Woodcock remains and moves to the opposite ledge before flying off at 12:35. The male goes onto the platform looking out and then sits on the ledge at 13:05. He goes back into the box 30 minutes later on the return of the female. She remains on the ledge when he flies off at 13:40 returning 5 minutes later. She leaves at 14:50 followed by the male a few moments later when the juvenile arrives. The juvenile immediately chases after the male. He is back on the ledge at 14:55 and is joined by the female 5 minutes later. She takes a short flight at 15:50 returning to the ledge. The male leaves at 16:00 but is back after 5 minutes. He then walks into the box calling and remains there until the female leaves at 16:45. He stands on the platform looking out, then sits on the ledge until 17:00 when he flies off. The female returns in the dark at 22:30 with an item of prey (another Fieldfare) and starts to pluck it. However, after a few minutes she flies off with it. There is a lot of fireworks going off in the background. At 23:00, the male arrives but does not manage to land as he is pursued by the juvenile that remains on the ledge until midnight at least.

2 November – The female is still on the ledge at 1:25 when the male arrives with prey (another Woodcock). She leaves 10 minutes later whilst he continues to feed. At 2:05 he stashes the remains by a column and sits on the ledge and falls asleep. He is still there at dawn when he swaps ledges at 7:10 with the sun in his face. When the female arrives at 8:10 he goes into the box whilst she picks at the remains of his meal. He flies off after a few minutes and she looks out over the city. At 8:15 she flies off with the remains of the meal. The male is back at 9:10 and sits on the ledge looking out. He picks at a few scraps on the platform before sitting on the ledge. The female arrives at 10:10 and the male goes into the box. There is calling and posturing and the female replaces the male in the box. He goes onto the platform looking out. After a couple of minutes they swap positions. The male flies off at 10:25 returning for a few moments at 10:50. The juvenile arrives at 11:15 and calls at the female who then flies off. The juvenile follows 10 minutes later. The male is back at 13:10 leaving 20 minutes later. He returns at 13:45 with a Blue Tit as prey. The snack does not last long and he is off at 14:15. The female returns at 16:25 and remains on the ledge until 19:20. There is no further activity.

Photo 2 November: the tail feather of a Woodcock

1 November – The male arrives at 4:45 and takes a short flight at 5:30. He is off at 6:10 and the female arrives at 6:20 but she leaves as soon as the juvenile flies in. The juvenile flies off at 6:45 and the male returns at 7:10 but is off after just 5 minutes. At 8:10 the female arrives and is immediately joined by the male who goes into the box. There is calling and posturing. The female picks up the remains of the previous day’s meal and takes it to the ledge and starts eating it. The male picks up the head of the Woodcock that was still on the platform and eats that before flying off at 8:15. The female stops eating and goes to the opposite ledge leaving at 8:45. The juvenile is back at 9:00 and eyes up the remains left by the female. He drags it onto the platform and starts eating and leaves at 9:25. The adult male is back at 9:40 and is off again at 10:20. At 11:25 the female arrives followed by the juvenile calling. She goes into the box and he follows calling. The female runs out of the box onto the ledge, the juvenilely remaining in the box calling before sitting on the opposite ledge after a few minutes – still calling! He eventually gives up at 11:45 and flies off, the female remaining for another 10 minutes. The male is back at 13:05 sits on the ledge, walks into the box then settles on the opposite ledge at 13:15. He takes a short flight at 15:40 and goes into the box as the female arrives. There is calling and posturing and when the female goes into the box the male goes onto the platform before facing up to the female in the box. After a few moments he sits on the platform facing away from her whilst she males a scrape. She then goes onto the ledge whilst the male sits in the scrape. There is quiet calling and chipping before they settle down. The male flies off at 16:00. The female remains until 16:55 when she leaves. At 21:20, in the dark, a male bird arrives with prey but on closer inspection there is a second (half-sized) ring on the bird. This would appear to be the male that I found on the Abbey Pumping Station chimney on 29 October. This is the first time a rouge bird has been on the platform and the events of the next few days will be extremely interesting! He plucks and eats the prey and has finished by 21:30. He sits on the ledge until 21:50 when he flies off. The female arrives at 22:35 with prey of her own and she stands on the ledge and plucks it. After 5 minutes she carries it to the opposite side and continues plucking. When she has finished eating, she sits on the ledge at 22:50. She remains there until midnight at least.

Photo 1 November: note the half-sized ring on the right leg of this male. Most probably the bird seen on the Abbey Pumping Station chimney 2 days earlier.

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