Falcon chicks have hatched

Date published: 18 May 2020

The first peregrine falcon chick hatched yesterday morning (Sunday 17 May) and the second hatched soon after.

Two eggs were laid in April and once hatched, the chicks are likely to take their first flight within six weeks.

One of around 1,500 breeding pairs across the UK, falcons have nested at the clock tower of the Grade-I listed Town Hall for more than a decade and are regularly seen soaring above the town centre as they hunt for food. 

These eggs are the first between this pairing of falcons, as the previous adult male of the pair sadly died last summer.

Although falcons pair for life, the surviving bird can accept a new mate – which the female did later that year.

A live webcam tracks the birds’ progress as they raise their chicks at the top of the historic clock tower where a nesting area has been built, reflecting the birds’ natural habitat to breed and hunt prey.

Councillor Janet Emsley, cabinet member for neighbourhoods, said: “This is wonderful news and lovely to see the chicks have safely hatched. To have two chicks this year is a real bonus, as this was a young adult couple new to the nesting area. We will shortly be launching a special naming competition and, like previous years, I am sure it will generate plenty of interest and creative entries.”

Three chicks hatched last year and were named Swoop Dogg, Pegasus and Tweety Pioneer, following on from the three chicks that hatched in 2018 which were named Kevin Beakon, Striker and BuckBeak. The four chicks to hatch in 2017 were named Perrie, Freddie Falcon, Millennium Falcon and El Superfasto.

You can view the birds’ progress at:

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