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Friday, 3 February 2023

Battersea Power Station - January

Having visited the Power Station several times during January checking on various wildlife, not just the Peregrines, it is good to confirm that the 1st winter male Black Redstart is now constant, so much so that I now know what area he now favours. Remarkably it is the same patch that they have nested in/on when the site was under the construction phase beginning in 2013, although obviously much changed.

As per previous update re December, the habitat and green roofs has been very successful in holding him and other species like Goldfinch on site with suitable foraging. Black Redstarts are obviously not as high profile and in your face as the Peregrines, nonetheless still Schedule 1 and just as important.

I have now relocated a number of open fronted nest boxes, placed discreetly on site aimed at Black Redstart, Robin, Wren, Pied and Grey Wagtail, these have been placed in climbers etc that will provide natural cover. Some will cover up more when we get more Spring growth or even be hidden in a structure.

Open fronted boxes must be placed in discreet positions or the uptake on them is unlikely to happen, they will have a minimal chance of success. Crows/Magpies can easily predate them, consequently they are unlikely to get chosen and accepted.

Hole boxes however are far different as they cannot be predated, predominately the boxes on site are Wood Crete which makes occupied boxes safe from Great Spotted Woodpeckers. The closest Woodpeckers are in Battersea Park, I have wooden boxes on another site I monitor and a couple of families of Blue Tits have succumbed unfortunately to the Woodpecker. In the process of taking the young, they also destroy the nest box.

In total there are now 19 nest boxes on site in a wide variety of habitats, with many more earmarked as even more habitats establish and are created.

The Peregrines are in and out of the new nest box, lots of ledge display and signs are looking good, hopefully she can turn back the clock given her age of 12+.

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