Peregrine Falcon

They are protected by law and the location of their nests kept secret because they have been the subject of much persecution in the past, and their eggs are still vulnerable to illegal egg collectors.  The young peregrine chicks are also vulnerable to theft and sale in foreign countries.

Despite this and the added effects of widespread pesticide use in the UK in the 1960's and 70's which severely reduced breeding success, peregrine falcons have made a spectacular recovery in population numbers, and the Pembrokeshire coast is a stronghold.

Peregrines are skilled hunters and can take their prey on the wing usually at high speed.  Favourite meals include pigeon, which is not popular with pigeon keepers and racers, but they will take a range of other bird species, including young chough, which is not popular with conservation land managers.

The peregrines nest on inaccessible ledges on the cliffs and typically produce 1 or 2 young, which are regularly fed by the hunting adults on the nest until they fledge in late June.

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Photography Mike Alexander

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