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Sunday 8 January 2023

Battersea Power Station



The new nest site it seems has been accepted with open arms, multiple visits during December alone, showed 29 visits by either bird with 14 instances of the pair undertaking ledge display.

As per last year I am keeping an open mind on breeding, the Falcon is fairly old, she is ringed and arrived at the Power Station as an adult in the winter of 2012.By my reckoning that now makes her a minimum of 12 years old, having added a year to gain adult plumage, she could even be older. They can live to around 15 years old but fertility issues become apparent, as per last year, usually around 10 years old.

Given London’s and the outer counties density of singles waiting in the wings, intruders as I know them, will continue to challenge, especially in the run up to breeding.

Fingers crossed for this year; she has surprised me before, hopefully so again.

                                                                  Catching some ray's

                              New nest ledge is a hit with the rounded tops for comfort perching

                                          View from Battersea to the closest pair at Parliament

In regard to other breeding site wildlife, the new and established trees attracted no less than 11 breeding pairs of Goldfinch, with the leaf moult, all the nests revealed themselves and gave themselves up.

Elsewhere both Pied and Grey Wagtail bred in the River Wall and a pair of Collared Doves, remarkably nested aloft in the roof gardens. I would imagine this was very risky with the peregrines sitting above on the chimneys.

There are now multiple nest boxes site wide aimed at the 2023 breeding season, these will compliment already established boxes which I will have to clean out in January. Aimed at Blue/Great Tit, Robin, Wren and both Wagtails along with Black Redstarts, there were already occupied boxes in 2022.

                                                      Site bred - adult and juv Goldfinch

                                                                           Blue Tit

                                                   Goldfinch - part of a 25 strong flock on site

Black Redstarts were constant throughout the breeding period, 2 males were counter singing on one occasion, not unusual in that as there have often been 2 males in some years.

What is good news is that a male has wintered on site, usually they disappear for wintering foraging grounds late Autumn, returning at the start of April. With a number of green roofs now available and various rooftop gardens, both large and small, there is now a good food source up there to keep them on site wintering, great stuff.

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