Plymouth Branch recent talk ‘A Pilgrims Tail – A life on the Ledge’

Posted February 23rd, 2014 at 9:48 pm

The title with a twist for this superb talk on peregrine falcons in Devon and Cornwall, comes from the Swedish name ‘Pilgrimsfalk’ with ‘falk’  meaning the ‘tail’ and the rest having a Plymouthian connection

Roger Finnamore, Greg Curno and his son Luke, all members of the Southwest Peregrine Group, put together an excellent colourful display and informative presentation at Mutley Baptist Church, Plymouth on 17th February.

Formed in 2007 this study group collects data from over 50 sites, which it sends to the BTO.  Their efforts produce 25% of the national data.  Currently 1500 pairs were reported in UK National Survey1213.  Their website, southwestperegrines.org.uk, shows photos and news of these magnificent birds.

From a skeleton on display, the deep breastbone, to which attaches strong flight muscles illustrated the characteristics of great strength and speed of the peregrine.  Long powerful talons and beak and bulky jaw muscles as well as exceptional vision were described allowing the bird to capture and dispatch prey on the wing.

59 people, who attended the meeting, were rewarded with wonderful videos of the birds on the eyrie yet showed their great care in turning eggs and bringing up their chicks.

The next meeting is on 28th April when John Walters, naturalist, photographer and illustrator will give a presentation on ‘Birds of Dartmoor’ at Spurgeon Hall, Mutley Baptist Church, Plymouth.

(Liz Harris)