Courtship hotting up

Xavier is now starting to regularly bring prey for Diamond as a prelude to the breeding season, to demonstrate his prowess as a hunter and provider. Sometimes he forgets that he has to hand it over and she has to chase him for the prey! This time, however, he diligently stashes it in the corner and leaves just as Diamond enters. Rather surprisingly (starling is definitely her preferred food), she picks up the prey and leaves with it.

Incidentally, mating has already been observed several times on the tower, indicating that she is happy with Xavier as potential father again. Although this seems very early (eggs are not due before mid-August), it may be simply be that we have not observed this behaviour in June before as we did not have the advantage of the tower cam.