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Peregrine - Nature’s Top Gun


In recognition of the centenary of man’s first powered flight, Wildlife on One explores the phenomenal abilities of nature’s greatest aviator – the fastest flying predator on Earth, the Peregrine Falcon. Set against the backdrop of RAF Valley, the fast-jet training school on the island of Anglesey in Wales, this film analyses how young peregrines learn the skills of high-speed air combat.

The youngsters are followed over the course of one short season, as they discover the limitations of their design and begin to learn the techniques that will one day allow them to live up to their reputation as nature’s ‘Top Gun’.

During the course of filming, we witnessed and filmed some revelatory peregrine behaviour such as the parents encouraging their young to hunt by releasing live pigeons for them to chase and the youngsters successfully group hunting together.

Peregrine – Nature’s Top Gun was first aired on BBC One at 7:00pm on Wednesday 23 July 2003.

Reviews of the programme included:

TV Times:  “Breathtaking documentary, ***** unmissable! – Pick of the Day.

Mail on Sunday: “Tom Cruise, eat your heart out.” – Pick of the Day.

Observer TV: “Wonderful photography.” – Pick of the Day.

Radio Times: “Wonderful aerial sequences.” – Choice.

A (very low quality) recording of the programme is available below. The BBC recording is available only on the American market.

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