Wild, wild life

One of Walsall’s peregrines, 11 floors up Tameway Tower, nonchalant as only a bird of prey can be. Photo from the 2011 Peregrinewatch event, and posted on Flickr by Walsall Wildlife.

Had this press release in today from the grey Lubyanka that is the civic centre in Walsall. Have to say, this is something I support fully. Morgan Bowers and Kevin Clements and all the team of employees and volunteers working to promote, preserve and document wildlife in Walsall are doing a splendid job. People think grimy old Walsall hasn’t got much to offer in the way of wildlife, but they’re very, very wrong. Our area is teaming with a rich biodiversity, and these folk are doing a wonderful thing in sharing it with the public.

The peregrines are the jewel in the crown for Walsall. Let’s see if we can get them online, despite the daft names… by the way, Morgan deserves an extra special shout for taking the best photograph of a smooth newt ever. Prepare for a cuteness overload.

Walsall Council PR 7021 10/01/2012 [For Immediate Release]

Opportunity to keep an eye on Walsall’s peregrine falcons

Schools, businesses and organisations could all keep a bird’s eye on Walsall’s very own peregrine falcons by taking up an opportunity to sponsor wildlife cameras to monitor their movements.

Walsall Council’s Countryside Services teamed up with the West Midland Bird Club and local RSPB members to hold a one day Peregrine Watch in May last year and the event was hugely popular.

And Peregrine Watch 2 will be happening on Friday 30 March this year – the ideal opportunity to launch sponsored web cams.

The Black Country Biodiversity Group, supported by countryside services, has been exploring the possibility of setting up wildlife cameras in the bell tower at Walsall Council House in Lichfield Street to capture the activities of the birds of prey.

The pair of wild peregrine falcons, nicknamed “Katy and Matthew (Perry)” by council staff, have made Walsall town centre their home for a few years now, and can regularly be seen on the tall structures around the area.

The group has researched the costs involved of setting up four wildlife cameras, with the necessary video/audio/power extension cables and a camera stalk within a peregrine nest box and this comes to around £2,000.

It creates an ideal sponsorship opportunity for local schools, businesses or organisations.

Morgan Bowers, Walsall Council senior countryside ranger and records officer for the Black Country Biodiversity Group, said: “Peregrine Watch was a great success – these birds already have a fond following in Walsall and never cease to amaze those who are lucky enough to spot them flying between our tall town town centre buildings.

“The wildlife cameras would give us unprecedented access to these important borough residents without disturbing them or threatening their safety and well being.

“The cameras would provide schools with a unique learning opportunity or businesses with a unique community experience and we hope to be able to attract sponsorship.”

Anyone interested in sponsorship should contact add details or call add details.

Peregrine Watch was held as part of Walsall 100 – a week-long Twitter initiative to show 100 things that Walsall Council and partners collectively do as the public sector in Walsall town centre.

People can go to Walsall Wildlife’s Facebook page or follow @walsallwildlife or the hashtag #WS1Perries (I’d link to that, but there’s nothing there yet – Bob).

Talons bloodied from a pigeon meal, beak cleaning is essential. Well, you brush your teeth after meals, too… Photo from the 2011 Peregrinewatch event, and posted on Flickr by Walsall Wildlife.

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4 Responses to Wild, wild life

  1. pedro says:

    Great story of adaptation, I remember taking an interest in a pair in Birmingham. I remember when you had to go to the seaside to see a seagull!

    Interesting article here…

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/earth/earthnews/3324408/Peregrine-falcon-adapting-to-urban-lifestyle.html

    All the best Peter

  2. It’s amazing how wildlife adapts to the urban space …. i’m interested in stories round the world. Should we be looking at at new classification “Urban Wildlife”? Here in the southern peninsula of Cape Town, we have a species of incredibly adaptive ‘streetwise’ primates…..

  3. Pingback: Peregrine Watch is back today! « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

  4. Pingback: Sorry, I have to share this « BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

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