Nearly airbourne

No pictures for the moment can be uploaded onto this site.

However, hopefully the chicks can be seen on the live stream. They are now into their 7th week and their muscles are developing with exercise  interspersed with rest. In week six they were also preening vigorously to release their feathers from the sheaths. This process is now  largely complete although there still looks to be another centimetre or two to grow on pinions and tail feathers. Flapping is now strong enough to carry the birds in hops across the nest and they are all spending time balanced precariously over the void and looking down.

Like many birds of prey they stare at a particular point and then move their heads rapidly from side to side. They are probably triangulating distance as they have no other practical way of knowing how far things are from the nest and thus where they might land on that important first flight.