The hirundines are here

We’ve had all weathers here at the watch point today, wind, rain, something that resembled sunshine, gusts, showers, actually sunshine and more rain. The Scottish weather has been as mixed as our visitors today, we’ve had the pleasure of chatting to folk from all corners of our planet from just up the road to as far reaching as Pennsylvanian, America to Canberra, Australia.

In between the showers we were treated to a real spring moment when several swallows and sand martins (both of hirundine bird family) flew up through the gorge heading towards bonnington weir, and the large open water beyond for spot of afternoon fly catching. The tiercel who was currently incubating, also spotted the new arrivals and was clearly excited by there presence, following them as they flew overhead, with bobbing head movements and “chupping” calls, he clearly wanted to follow them. He soon gave chase, with the falcon taking her turn incubating.

I shall have to wade through the archives to see if there are any records of the tiercel predating hirundines, I know swallows have been a recorded prey species of peregrines at other sites. It is possible he was simply eager to go hunting with the break in the weather and with the signs there were plenty of other bird activity about.

He could however be a specialist hirundine hunter and have such a hankering for them that he eats them all to himself away from the eyrie and out of the sight of the falcon prying eyes.  Readers of the previous “Pigeon Predation” blog will also know she is more than capable of having it all her way and eating more than her fair share of his kills. Long term followers will know she often like to take the opportunity to assert her dominance over him especially when food is involved. Or least that’s what I thought until this evening when I witnessed some very surprising behaviour indeed, read tomorrows blog to find out what happened next…

To be continued…

 Adam Murphy – Peregrine Ranger

Preface

We’ve had all weathers here at the watch point today, wind, rain, something that resembled sunshine, gusts, showers, actually sunshine and more rain. The Scottish weather has been as mixed …

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