The Hawk and Owl Trust's superb peregrine nestcam on the spire of Norwich Cathedral has been a riotous success, thanks to the interest of the people of Norwich, Norfolk and further afield, and thanks to sterling promotion by local institutions and media. To date there have been almost one-and-a-half million hits on the the site, thousands and thousands of them, no doubt, from people who might otherwise have little interest in nature or little chance to let it into their lives and minds.
My mother rings me virtually every day to tell me how the chicks are and what her current worries are for their future. Since she is a committee member of the Cathedral Flower Guild and of this year's flower festival she knows where all the ladders are kept and on one especially cold wet day I had to be very firm indeed to prevent her shinning up the spire to rescue the smallest chick.
Really mother, it wouldn't have helped.
But I digress. This hugely welcome swell of interest in Norwich's pioneering peregrines has left the Hawk and Owl Trust with a problem. A system that was set up with scant funds, and which runs on goodwill and volunteer time, is struggling to cope with such massive demand. The Hawk and Owl Trust urgently needs financial support, however small, to keep the camera running and to keep the Norwich peregrines on the laptops and in the hearts of the people of Norfolk. Making a donation is easy: simply follow the link under the webcam here.
I made mine.