FOLLOWING the tragic death of a female kestrel which had left six eggs abandoned in a nest, three new kestrel chicks have hatched.

Earlier in the year the female kestrel that had nested at Lorton Meadows nature reserve was killed.

She had laid six eggs but sadly they could not hatch without her there to keep them warm.

As a result, staff at Lorton Meadows took down their live camera feed to the nest.

Luckily the male found himself another mate. A new female kestrel took up residence in the nest and laid five new eggs, the first being around May 25 according to Dorset Wildlife Trust staff.

Following the arrival of the new female, the camera, sponsored by Dorset Tea was put back online.

Staff at Lorton Meadows have waited nervously to see the chicks hatch over the past few weeks.

Megan Shersby, a seasonal assistant for Dorset Wildlife Trust said: “Over the previous weekend, three chicks hatched.

“Last time I looked there was at least one egg that hadn’t hatched and we are not sure if they will hatch or not because all not all the eggs will hatch.

“It hasn’t been too nerve wracking, it’s been quite exciting.

“We have had a lot of school groups and girl guides and scouts in and I was pointing out the webcam to them because I want them to get excited too.

“It was quite hard to find the previous female kestrel dead and to see six eggs abandoned.

“Unfortunately that’s nature. There is not much you can do about it, you can just hope for the best and it looks like it’s happening.”

The kestrels and chicks can be watched onscreen live at the Lorton Meadows Conservation Centre, and online at