What a difference a day makes! After a cold start yesterday we had a fantastic warm day on site which was appreciated by both the visitors and the birds. The peregrines spent the morning basking in the sunshine and preening themselves on the ledges around the 2013 eyrie, a good spot for soaking up the sun and providing us with some fantastic views. Around lunchtime the female flew off leaving the male perched on one of his favourite ledges. An hour or so later he started calling loudly and peering across to the the other side of the gorge, showing that the female had returned with a fresh catch. As soon as she was finished and had flown back into view the male was off to claim the rest for himself. He must have felt guilty as he returned to the ledge she was occupying bearing a small scrap of the meal. I don’t think she was too impressed but finished it off anyway.
Today has been a completely different story. Arriving at the site this morning neither bird was visible and the air felt distinctively muggy. Sure enough around 11am the heavens opened and it has continued to pour down since. First the male then the female flew to the cliff face to find shelter on ledges with good overhangs to keep off the worst of the downpour ruffling their feathers and doing a little preening to pass the time. After a few hours with no sign of the rain ceasing, the male lay down on the cliff in a slightly undignified manner while the female stuck her head under her wing and went to sleep. With weather like this the pair cannot hunt and so the best course of action is to preserve as much energy as possible and wait for it to pass. Luckily for the staff and visitors to the site, the new gazebo cover is brilliant for keeping you dry and the peregrines are in brilliant locations for viewing with the scopes. Not much more you could ask for!
Bye for now!
Alex Kekewich – Falls of Clyde Seasonal Ranger