Norwich Cathedral peregrine falcon: Chick found dead

A peregrine falcon chick that hatched on Norwich Cathedral has died, just days after all four chicks fledged successfully. The survival of the chicks and their leaving the nest was understood to be a first in the city for more than 200 years.


Fledged Peregrine Chicks by Sam Hobson

There are now reported to be more peregrines nesting in London than there are in the Northern Pennines and the Forest of Bowland put together

Earlier, The Hawk and Owl Trust said one of the female chicks had been found dead on the cathedral roof.

They said they believed it was a flying accident.

“We have been concerned about chick T3 for a couple of days now because she hadn’t been seen,” a spokesman said.

“A post-mortem examination is being carried out and we will report back as soon as we know.

“Fledging is a very dangerous time for young peregrines and it doesn’t matter whether they are on a cliff face or a cathedral spire, the risks are the same.

“This is nature and there is nothing we could have done to avoid this outcome.

“We still have three beautiful chicks left, so do enjoy them.”

It added names had been picked for the chicks, with the dead chick due to be named Eleanor.

Her surviving siblings are Edith, after World War I Norfolk nurse Edith Cavell; Nelson, in honour of Norfolk’s sea-faring hero and Perry, “a name children especially liked”, the trust said.

Last year, one chick failed to hatch and another chick died.

The sole egg produced in 2011, soon after the nesting platform was set up on the cathedral’s spire, produced an underdeveloped dead chick.

The latest falcons were just the third, fourth, fifth and sixth to fledge in Norwich in the past 200 years.

What is significant about this Peregrine story, although 99% of Peregrine territories established inside Lancashire’s Forest of Bowland have been discovered abandoned this year, with as many as 32 adult breeding falcons disappeared, possibly shot, this important detail has not been reported, or picked, up by the news media…


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2 comments to Norwich Cathedral peregrine falcon: Chick found dead

  • Mick Smith

    I disagree with the statement “This is nature and there is nothing we could have done to avoid this outcome”. The Norwich site is the most exposed of all eyries I have seen with a web cam. The two eyasses that I saw did not fledge, they were literally blown off the ledge backwards. A little bit more protection on the ledge might assist?
    Editor’s Comment. Thanks for this update Mick. What happened, although sad, should now be a lesson for the future. We do hope those in charge are able to make suitable nest box alterations to prevent this sort of accident taking place in the future.


    I agree with Mick prey species and parts get blown of churches I have seen parts full of maggots.