Viewers have front row seats as goshawk chicks hatch

date with nature 2015

Published Wednesday 20 May 2015

The births of three goshawk chicks in the New Forest have been watched live online by bird lovers.

Watch live footage.

The chicks arrived in the second week of May, but a fourth egg did not hatch and now looks unlikely to do so. The remaining youngsters are doing well thanks to a regular supply of food from their parents, and in five to six weeks they will be able to fly and ready to leave the nest.

The goshawk nest is filmed as part of Date with Nature in the New Forest, which uses ‘raptorcam’ technology to allow viewers to follow the lives of birds of prey in their nests as they breed, hatch eggs, feed chicks and teach their young how to fly.

The project is based at the New Forest Reptile Centre, two miles south west of Lyndhurst off the A35, and is run by the RSPB, New Forest National Park Authority, Forestry Commission and Carnyx Wild. So far this year more than 6,000 people have visited the centre to see the drama unfold, while thousands more have watched online.

The footage is on view daily between 10am and 4.30pm at the Reptile Centre, where staff and volunteers are on hand to explain more about the birds’ behaviour.

Michael Lake, RSPB Membership Development Officer, said: ‘I'm very pleased to see that three chicks have hatched and are being well looked after by the parents.

‘Everyone involved with the project is really excited to watch the development of these chicks over the next five to six weeks as they grow and learn to fly. Watching the live TV image of these birds at the Reptile Centre is a real treat, as visitors get to witness it in the New Forest, where the action is taking place and there are plenty of reptiles and amphibians to see there as well.’

Gillie Molland, New Forest National Park Authority Lead Ranger, said: ‘Now that the goshawk chicks have hatched, the most absorbing period of Date with Nature begins. Watching the chicks being fed and learning to fly is an exciting prospect and the perfect reason to head down to the Reptile Centre this half term.

‘Our rangers will be there for Wild Wednesday on 27 May, with special activities for all ages to help you learn more about the New Forest while watching the live footage from the goshawk nest.’

The Wild Wednesday family activity days run every Wednesday during the summer half term and the summer school holidays. This year the dates are 27 May, 29 July and 5, 12, 19 and 26 August.

A Date with Nature also features live footage from a ‘feeder cam’, which will capture activity around bird feeders near the centre.

A Date with Nature in the New Forest runs daily from 28 March to 6 September, 10am to 4.30pm. Entry to the Reptile Centre is free although donations for parking are welcome.


Notes to photo editor:

A screenshot from live online footage of goshawk chicks being filmed as part of the Date with Nature project in the New Forest.

Notes to editor:

The RSPB is the country’s largest nature conservation charity, inspiring everyone to give nature a home. Together with our partners, we protect threatened birds and wildlife so our towns, coast and countryside will teem with life once again. We also play a leading role in a worldwide partnership of nature conservation organisations. Visit for more information.

The RSPB is a registered charity in England & Wales 207076, in Scotland SC037654

About the New Forest National Park Authority

Protect - Enjoy - Prosper

The New Forest National Park Authority’s statutory purposes are to:

  • Conserve and enhance the natural beauty, wildlife and cultural heritage of the Park - Protect
  • Promote opportunities for understanding and enjoyment of its special qualities – Enjoy.

We also have a duty to:

  • Seek to foster the social and economic well-being of local communities within the Park – Prosper.

The New Forest National Park was designated in March 2005. Its unique landscape has been shaped over the centuries by grazing ponies, cattle and pigs which roam free. Majestic woodlands, rare heathland and a spectacular coastline provide fabulous opportunities for quiet recreation, enjoyment and discovery.

Visit to find out more.

The Forestry Commission is the government department responsible for protecting, expanding and promoting the sustainable management of woodlands and increasing their value to society and the environment. Visit

Carnyx Wild

Carnyx Wild specialise in getting close up footage of secretive species, an ‘Eye in the Nest’ for this project and then get those live pictures back to the Date with Nature HQ across the New Forest. From there it goes worldwide onto the internet.

Many years in the business using natural history field craft gained from producing broadcast films and combined with state of the art filming technology to keep everything in miniature around the nest, Carnyx Wild deliver a fascinating insight into the natural world around us.

In addition, Carnyx Wild host an informative internet blog on this project where the public can chat on the live imagery as it unfolds.

Media Contact:

Matt Stroud, Communications Assistant, New Forest National Park Authority
Tel: 01590 646650

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