Peregrine Falcon | Falco Peregrinus
Congratulations! You found clue number two - The Peregrine Falcon. Perched high on the cathedral spire is a pair with four newly hatched chicks!
The peregrine is a large and powerful falcon. It has long, broad, pointed wings and a relatively short tail. It is blue-grey above, with a blackish top of the head and an obvious black 'moustache' that contrasts with its white face. It is swift and agile in flight, chasing prey.
Peregrine numbers were low in the 1960s due to humans and the impact of pesticides in the food chain. Better protection has helped the birds to recover and they have now expanded into many urban areas. However, they are still persecuted - some are illegally killed to prevent attack on game birds and racing pigeons. They also have eggs and chicks taken for collections and falconry.
What they eat:
Medium-sized birds, such as wading birds, pigeons and small ducks.
Length: 39-50 cm
Wingspan: 95-115 cm
Weight: 600-1300 g
UK breeding: 1,500 pairs
This bird species has different identifying features depending on sex/age/season.