Northampton

Kirby Hall's chick hopes as 'frustrated' peacock appeal answered

Peacock and peahens at Kirby Hall
Image caption The peacocks had tried to impress squirrels, park benches and bins due to a lack of peahens

A stately home that launched an appeal for peahens to mate with its "frustrated" peacocks has said it hopes to welcome some chicks this summer.

The male birds at Kirby Hall in Corby, Northamptonshire, had fanned out their tail feathers at squirrels, park benches and bins last year, said staff.

Two peahens have since been donated and have settled among the flock.

Site manager Beryl Spearman said: "I am really pleased. It's so kind of people to think of us."

Image copyright Keith Evans
Image caption Kirby Hall's flock of wild peacocks and peahens are cared for by the estate's staff

The home lost some of its peahens to a fox two years ago but now it has seven peacocks and nine peahens, which is the "right balance".

One donated peahen had been found roaming in a built-up area of the county, while the other was handed over as her mate had died and her owner, who lived near Milton Keynes, said she was lonely.

"It's good they have settled as they might have left, so they are quite happy," said Mrs Spearman.

"It's now mating season and the boys are displaying their feathers, so who knows what might happen.

"Any time now the hens might start to lay and the eggs will hatch in early June so we might have some chicks."

Peacocks have lived in the hall's grounds since it was built in the 17th Century.

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