Earliest eggs ever for Derby’s Famous Peregrines

Today we discovered that the Derby Cathedral Peregrines have laid two eggs – the earliest eggs yet! Kaite Helps explains.

Every year, roughly around Easter, all eyes are on the peregrine webcams, waiting for the first egg.

Well, in true 2021 style, things have been a little different. Peregrines have been nesting on the cathedral tower since 2006, with March 23rd being the earliest date for eggs before now. This year the eggs are way ahead of schedule, catching us all by surprise! 

Last year we lost our long standing female and a new female moved in to the famous nesting spot. She obviously likes to do things a little earlier!

Peregrines usually lay clutches of four eggs in roughly two day intervals so we are hoping for a third in the next 24 hours and the last one 48 hours after that. They don't always lay four, we've had a year or two with just three so let's see.

Peregrine eggs derby cathedral 2021

Not only is the timing unusual this year, but also the colour of the eggs. Peregrines usually lay red-brick coloured eggs but this year one of the eggs is much paler. We know this shouldn't make any difference to the precious chick inside but it is certainly an unusual year for Derby’s peregrines.

Peregrine falcons are the world’s fastest animal, reaching unbelievable speeds of up to 390kph. They love to nest in high places such as towers and cliff edges, anywhere where they can have a great vantage point for spotting and swopping down on prey.

And, even more good news, our famous Derby peregrine webcams will be live once again this weekend, following two years off air. All thanks to Nick Moyes, Nick Brown and Derby City Council. 

Once they are all sorted you can watch live here:

Peregrine, Dave Nay, via Flickr