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Last Updated: Wednesday, 9 May 2007, 16:15 GMT 17:15 UK
'Nestcam' showing falcon chicks
Image from the nestcam (from RSPB/Eco-watch)
The peregrine falcons nest in a south-east turret on the cathedral
A "nestcam" is showing the early days of four peregrine falcon chicks which were hatched in a turret at Chichester Cathedral, in West Sussex.

The birds are between six and eight days old, and are being looked after by their mother in a nest box installed by the Sussex Ornithological Society.

Their parents have nested at the cathedral since 2001 and they have already raised 18 chicks there.

Visitors will be able to view the brood through telescopes at the end of May.

The live nestcam feed is currently being shown on a flat-screen television in the cathedral's Cloisters Cafe.

Scruffy 'teenage' stage

Dan Parkinson, from the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, said: "People will be able to watch them [the chicks] take their first flight when we go outside with telescopes.

"We also have volunteers who know all about peregrine falcons and can explain a bit about the way they live."

Mr Parkinson said the chicks appeared to be in good health so far.

"The mum broods them pretty closely for the first few days, especially when it's cold and wet and they need to keep warm, and the dad brings all the food in.

"In the early days, they wear what you might call their romper suit, all white and fluffy.

"They will then go into a scruffy 'teenage' stage before getting their immaculate flying uniform - and all within two months."

Visitors to the cathedral can watch and hear about the falcon chicks until 8 June.

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