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-------------------------- Snow, 2012
Snow fledged safely Snow fledged - 43 days old Snow, Cilla Snow being weighed, measured Snow - Day 38 Snow - Day 24 Snow on the alert Beau and egg (pre-Snow) A regal Beau in residence Snow - Day 3
-------------------------- Narrambla, 2011
Narrambla still there 2 Narrambla still there Narrambla released 3 Narrambla released 2 Narrambla released Narrambla in care 2 Narrambla in care Narrambla 3 Narrambla 2 Narrambla 1

Cilla Kinross

Yurruga fledged at 0604 h this morning.   He is fine.  He flew for a bit, then landed on the ground near the base of the water tower.  Some some staff found him, rang me.  I caught him, checked him over then placed him in a tree nearby (actually visible from ledge cam).   He was fine and hopefully will get the strength to fly more strongly over the next few days.

Below is a picture of him in the tree, just now

Here are a couple of videos of the fledge.

 

 

 

 

 

Left to right: Diamond (female), Xavier (male), Yurruga (juvenile)

The website has been unavailable for much of this year, but here is a short update:

Three eggs were laid  on 31st August, 2nd and 5th September.   One egg hatched on 8th October.  The other two did not.  One egg did have a chick inside, as we could see movement, but it was probably not strong enough to break out.  These things happen, although very rarely, fortunately.  The other egg probably was not fertilised.   They are still in the box and I will collect them later and offer them to the Australian Museum.

So the chick that hatched is called Yurruga after a vote was held featuring 12 different names of weather phenomenon in the local Aboriginal language, Wiradjuri.  I’m still not sure, but I think it’s probably a female, as it appears on the picture above to be larger than Xavier.   She or he should fledge this weekend, I think, as most of the down has gone and the wing exercising has been more frequent.

Here is my most recent video of Yurruga at 37 days (today = 39).

The weather has been unseasonably cold and wet this year.  There have been days when there have been as few as one small prey brought in, but with just one chick, that has not been a problem and other days, the hunting has been very successful.

Diamond had an injury a few weeks, ago, probably from hunting, although we are not sure of course.

The future of this website is uncertain.  It was upgraded by the owner, Scott Banks, and was out of action, for a while.  The chat function is still not operating as far as I can tell.   I’ll keep you posted.   We may be able to design a new one and transfer some of the information across.)

The data collection phase of my current research project finished at the end of August 2021 and, aided by some of our very competent volunteers, we are getting all the data into spreadsheets ready for analysis.  There are two main components:  diet (nine years’ of data) and behaviour based on daily observations over seven years.

 

 

 

 

 

I am testing the revamped website to see if it will allow stills to be added

Here is the link to the video

Diamond drops in with a nice breakfast for Izzi

This is a test run to see if the website is operational.  Huge relief to have it going again, especially with young ones imminent – hatching due from the beginning of October, but more likely from 2nd or 3rd.

Here is a video of Diamond arriving in a snowstorm (which was actually a bit of a non-event as the snow barely settled, but would have made hunting a bit interesting).

It would seem that I still cannot load stills, which is a shame, but hopefully that will be fixed before fledging.

Very little prey has been coming in recently, only one every second day or so, but that will change once there are mouths to feed.

One odd thing has been happening.  We appear to have a visitor..I’m not sure, but I think a large male.  He has arrived on the ledge and stayed for a while without trying to persuade Diamond off the eggs (as Xavier would).  Diamond didn’t try and chase them away but made a strange keening call, which I’ve heard before when strangers are around.

Your comments are welcome!  Cilla

 

 

I’m so sorry about the nest cam problems.  James and Scott are both working hard to fix it.  We really don’t want to have to get (or install) a new camera, especially just before hatching. Nor do we have the funds at present.  We are still trying for a different solution.

I have some access to the nest cam when I’m at work as I have installed some surveillance software called Security Eye which seems to bypass the cam streamer to youtube and connect directly with the camera (which is working fine, so another reason not to replace if possible).   This helps me fill in the gaps for my research.

So here is a video from that software of Diamond today getting herself in a bit of a muddle with the eggs and the walls of the box.  let’s see if this works https://youtu.be/wWE8ONE59Rw.  Woo-hoo it worked, well sort of.  It’s very short.  Now if I could just figure out how to load photos as I have nice new ones from both inside and outside the tower.

Here is another video from my youtube channel, which might be more successful.  This is Diamond also trying to land sideways in the nest on a windy day.  Apologies for the music.  I forgot I had Spotify or something on in the background!

 

The other problem is that I can’t read your comments as an observer (I can through the back door, so to speak), which presumably means that you can’t read each others’ comments either.  I’ve alerted Scott to this problem (and asked him how to insert photos, which I’ve uploaded to the library here).  Hopefully this will be fixed soon.

I have updated this page (I didn’t realise that I had access…) with some very brief notes from each year that was missing.  Should give you a bit of background.

 

 

I have my website access back, so can start doing my Friday (or more frequent) updates.   We now have three eggs, as follows

27/08/2020 416 Di 1st egg
29/08/2020 1600 Di 2nd egg
1/9/2020 0157 Di 3rd egg

This pair has never had more than three, so I expect that is our lot.

All are doing well.  A lot of prey was coming in (mostly starling, with the odd rosella, galah, pigeon and various unidentified scraps) until recently when it almost petered out.  I suspect they have a stash somewhere outside.

We had a drama with the nest cam being flickering and off, and mostly off, over the last few days, but that was fixed last night (thank you, Scott).

We think there is also another peregrine around, possibly two.  A large female juvenile visited the box recently and we think there might be an adult around too.  This makes our pair rather nervous as the concrete hilton as prime real estate!

We also had a drama with repairs being needed to a major leak in the water tower.  Fortunately, common sense has prevailed (aided by an appealing image of Diamond incubating her three eggs), the water in the tower will be lowered to below the leak and repairs postponed until after the season.

I don’t seem to be able to add photos.  I’ll check that with Scott.  But I should be able to add links to my youtube account, so let’s try that out.

https://youtu.be/UnrnPYK8eRI  RELUCTANT CHANGEOVER

Okay, that’s all for now.   Scroll down for comments

 

Hello, people.

It seems that Scott has repaired the website and I’m giving it a test run.

Here is the prey offering from Xavier this morning.  Not sure what it was, but it was a reasonable size and Diamond seemed pleased!

Despite looking regularly in the usual roost trees, and elsewhere, Gaia has not been seen since the first week.   There is some evidence that she was heard calling a few days after that, but nothing recent.    I have not actually stopped looking for her, and unless one gets a report of injury, or finds a corpse, one cannot categorically state that she has died, but that would seem the most likely outcome.   She is much too young to have set out on her own.

Even Pluto is not really hunting yet, although we have seen him catch a dropped prey a couple of times, once through the webcam and once in the field (sorry, no photo!).  He is a feisty youngster, tormenting his parents (as they all do) for food.  Here is seen interrupting his parents’ bonding ritual yesterday with demands for attention, managing to chase both adults out of the box.  I think he will do well!

 

 

Here is our young male, in a calmer pose.

Pluto in roost tree a week ago

 

Diamond (left, with full crop) and Xavier on top of the tower (this was a week ago).

A few prey have been brought in by the parents (mainly Diamond), including the probable rosella caught by Pluto on 27/11.  Here is the clip of that

We’ve also had a mystery prey (actually we have lots of these as much prey is brought in headless, wingless, tail-less and featherless:), but this one was a bit intriguing.  It seems to be a medium sized passerine, with narrow beak, plumage dark in colour with a clear patch of yellow and possibly some white on the flank.   Nothing springs to mind!  I’ve enlisted some local sleuths (Sue and Tiffany) to plumb the depths of their knowledge…

mystery prey

Pluto will continue his training following his parents, who will drop prey to him to hone his flying and catching skills and I expect him to start catching his own prey fairly soon.   Last year the youngsters took cicadas, but these insects come in waves and are unlikely to provide a feast this year.   The parents will gradually loosen ties with Pluto until he is independent.   This is unlikely before another three weeks and could take longer.  According to the literature, once juveniles can catch their own prey, the parents drive them away, but I’ve never observed that.  Our pair seem quite tolerant of youngsters, despite their sometimes appalling, nagging and even aggressive behaviour.

Chitra and I are going out in the field again this evening to watch the youngster.   I prefer to do this when Pluto is in the box (as he has been a lot this last week, resting during the day and even occasionally at night), so I know that, should I find a juvenile, that is Gaia as they are quite hard to tell apart unless they are together.

I have to go to Sydney this weekend, but will be around next week to keep an eye on things.

 

As we know both siblings fledged really well and were found together on the familiar roost tree earlier this week.   A colleague (Chitra Shanker, a visiting academic, with a very serious camera) and I have been having fun watching flying lessons around the tower and the roost trees.

Here is her picture of one of the adults flying, well beyond my photography skills:

Adult in flight

One of the juveniles (we think probably Pluto, based on size) has come back to the box and has been resting during the day. Here he is with Mum, Diamond.

Diamond and juvenile, probably Pluto

And the next day he came back.

this video shows Diamond leaving when he approaches and some ducking when an adult swoops from the top of the tower.

 

Here is one of the juveniles (probably Pluto) on the tower roof.  Note heart-shaped spots.

 

!

Juvenile in dead tree, probably Gaia. But also has heart-shaped spots! Photo by Chitra Shanker.

Have a lovely weekend.  Let’s hope some of that forecast rain evenutates.

And to avoid confusion, birds at this stage can be called eyasses, which simply means pre-adult birds, OR fledgelings, which means recently taken their first flight, OR juveniles as they have juvenile plumage.  There is no ‘fledgeling’ plumage, so it’s a stage rather than a look, if you see what I mean!

There are other definitions in use eg eyas often means unfledged, but is widely used for all young peregrines in the literature.  I’m sure falconers have their terminology as well, but their plumage can be affected by their diet in captivity!

 

 

 

 

 

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Season 8 2015 (1)

Diamond and her first egg Bula's first sight of first egg Bula's first sight of first egg Diamond and her first egg Diamond and her first egg Diamond and her first egg Diamond and her first egg Diamond taking a break

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