Chichester Cathedral Peregrines Prepare for Forthcoming Breeding Season

Image: David Shaw Wildlife (2024)

The peregrine falcons at Chichester Cathedral are getting ready for the upcoming breeding season.

They have been spotted frequently in the Cathedral grounds. Visitors have enjoyed sightings of the falcons from March until August in previous years, and many people follow them online through a live stream on the Cathedral website. The Peregrine project is a collaboration between Chichester Cathedral, the Sussex Ornithological Society (SOS), Carnyx, and local wildlife enthusiasts David and Janet Shaw, who have been observing the birds since 2001.

This year, David and Janet Shaw will be hosting a series of Open Days, weather permitting, on the Cathedral Green. During these Open Days, visitors can view the peregrines through telescopes, watch live footage, and learn more about the birds and their activities. These Open Days will take place from Wednesday to Sunday, between June 5th and July 7th, 2024.

David and Janet said, "With roof repairs behind us, new cameras installed, and both birds in residence, we are looking forward to a series of Open Days, in June and July, where we can share the majesty of these awesome birds with the public. Exciting days ahead!"

A spokesperson for the Cathedral said, "We hope that our visitors, and those who watch online, enjoy the experience of seeing these amazing birds make the Cathedral their home. We are grateful to the volunteers involved in this project, to Peter at Carnyx for enabling these magnificent creatures to be seen globally thanks to the live-stream cameras, and to David and Janet, who have been leading this project for over twenty years."

Peregrines were first seen on the tower in the mid-1990s. Since 2001, they have successfully nested on the Cathedral and have fledged more than 70 chicks. These magnificent birds of prey can grow up to half a meter in length and have a wingspan of over a meter. They live for 15 to 18 years and are the fastest animals in the world, diving at just under 250 miles per hour to catch their prey.

If you spot the peregrines in person or online, share the moment with us using the hashtag #ChichesterPeregrines on social media.

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