The pun was just to tempting, well at least its only once a year. But we have an egg! Or is it 2? Its tricky to say with the falcon choosing her favored eyrie spot behind a big rock but all behavior suggest she has started laying her clutch. Heres a short video of the falcon as she tries to get comfortable before laying her first egg.We would expect (resisted there) her to lay 3-4 eggs over the course of the week. It is only then that the she will start fully incubating around the clock. Wishing her eggs to develop at an even rate and hatch within a day or two of each other, thus avoid sibling bullying and equally feed and healthy eyasses. Until she has completed her clutch the pair will protect the current eggs from potential natural predators such as buzzards and corvids (crow family). Me and the rest of the ranger team have all cameras and 24hour watch set up in place to keep less than natural egg thieves at bay.
Heres another video of the tiercel wanting to see the eggs. If you look closely you can see some clues to how large the falcons appetite has been recently, as there are 3 small pellets on that large rock in the foreground (more about pellets in another blog). You can also see the differences between the two birds especially how, egg yolk rich, the tiercels cere (coloured bit above beak) eye/orbital ring and feet are. A good indication hes still in great condition for such an old bird. The yellow of the falcon is much paler as she lots of energy into producing and laying her eggs, hence the hunger.
1 or 2 more eggspected this week…
Adam Murphy – Peregrine Ranger