First peregrine falcon egg of 2020 laid at Salisbury Cathedral

First peregrine falcon egg of 2020 laid at Salisbury Cathedral

Published by Faye Tryhorn at 1:17pm 23rd March 2020.

2 minute read

There's been some good news from the base of the spire!

The nesting box at Salisbury Cathedral has seen its first bit of activity for the season, with the egg laid on Sunday morning (22nd March).

Cameras are trained on the nesting box at all times, picking up any movement that there might be.

We can watch the feed through the Salisbury Cathedral website.

It's hoped there might be more to come in the coming weeks:

Phil Sheldrake from the RSPB said:

"It's great that we have an egg - and quite a bit earlier than last year. We can't be sure it is the same female as last year though it is highly likely - sadly she's not ringed."

HOW LONG HAS SALISBURY CATHEDRAL HAD PEREGRINES? 

Peregrine chicks have been born at the Cathedral's nesting box every year since 2014, apart from 2018.

In that year, a territorial battle over the nesting box meant that no mating pairs ended up claiming the space.

In 2019, the nesting box was used by couple Fiona and Bruce, named after the TV presenter following a visit to the Cathedral from Antiques Roadshow.

Before that, the nesting box was used by Sally.

Salisbury Cathedral Nesting Box March 2020
The egg's being protected by its mother in the nesting box

The RSPB's Phil Sheldrake said:

"The news on Sally is that the last signal we got off her GPS tracking device was on the 3rd November when she was in the Coombe Bisset area. Is she still alive? Well we don't know; we haven't seen her on the cameras at the Cathedral and it's quite possible the tracking device has just stopped working after nearly three years. 

"She was estimated to be about seven years old when we ringed her so possibly 10 now, and whilst the oldest peregrine known was at least 24 the average lifespan will be around ten years."

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