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    First falcon born at Saints-Michel-et-Gudule cathedral

    The first of 4 peregrine falcon eggs hatched in the North tower of Saints-Michel-et-Gudule in Brussels midday on Thursday, revealed ornithologist Walter Roggeman. The falcons can be observed on www.fauconspelerins.be. “Falcons are not pets, they are not given names,” he points out. This first egg was initially expected to hatch on April 4th. The female, born in Germany in 2002, has been nesting in the cathedral since 2006, and she lays a few eggs every year at the same period. She chose one of the males born in 2009 as a partner in 2012, and he is now the father of this new brood.

    “The other eggs will soon hatch. We noticed there are males amongst the remaining eggs,” explains Walter Roggeman. The gender of the chick will be known in the coming 2 to 3 weeks, males being smaller than females. During this time, the birds will be banded. In 6 weeks, the hatchlings will try to fly for the first time and stay close to the nest for some time afterwards.”

    Images from a webcam inside the nest are being streamed to www.fauconspelerins.be. On Wednesday, the website racked up a staggering 50,000 hits. Last year’s record was 30,000 hits, said Walter Roggeman.

    Lars Andersen (Source: Belga)