‘Birds of Pray’: Peregrines nest in Louth church tower

One of the Peregrine Falcons at St James' Church. (Photo: Geoff Mullett) EMN-150420-094044001
One of the Peregrine Falcons at St James' Church. (Photo: Geoff Mullett) EMN-150420-094044001

Keen ornithologists in Louth have been celebrating this week after a pair of Peregrine falcons decided to lay their eggs at St James’ Church.

After the two Peregrine falcons were recently spotted flying in the area and feeding on the viewing walkway at St James’ Church tower, a nesting tray was put in place and within 24 hours there was evidence of the female scraping her nest there.

The events on the tower can be viewed on a television screen in the nave, and we hope that many of your readers will take a look and donate to St James’ to offset the loss of revenue due to the closure of the tower.

John Clarkson, Lincolnshire County bird recorder

By last Tuesday evening (April 14), the female had laid her first egg and a second egg followed a few days later.

It is expected that around four eggs will be laid in total, with the clutch likely to be complete by the middle 
of the week.

Bob Sheppard, Wildlife Conservation Partnership volunteer, said: “The male does most of the hunting during incubation. He will catch a lot of blackbird-size prey such as woodcock, golden plover and starlings.

“The walkway will soon be strewn with bones and feathers.”

John Clarkson, the Lincolnshire County bird recorder, said: “The eggs will be incubated for around 30 days and should hatch after approximately six weeks.

“Unfortunately this means that the tower of St James’ 
is closed to visitors until the Peregrines leave the nest 
in early July.

“The events on the tower can be viewed on a television screen in the nave, and we hope that many of your readers will take a look and donate to St James’ to offset the 
loss of revenue due to the closure of the tower.”

Mr Clarkson added: “Peregrines now nest on four of Lincolnshire’s churches at Lincoln, Grantham, 
Boston and now Louth.

“Peregrines are traditionally cliff nesters, and now they’ve taken to towns, so they nest in church towers.”