PEREGRINE falcon Freddie, which has been using the roof of Ealing Hospital as a roosting site, may be about to welcome a family.

Ealing Wildlife Group is optimistic there will be the patter of tiny talons, though the course of true love has not run smooth.

It reports that Freddie’s original partner, Dusty, has been ousted by a new female.

Vet Sean McCormack, who founded EWG several years ago, said: “Freddie has been displaying courtship behaviour and the female has been seen settling in the tray for long periods of time, which is encouraging.

“We should know in the next month. A tell-tale sign will be Freddie bringing food to his mate and the chicks, which are called eyasses.”

Peregrines, whose traditional habitat is cliff faces, began migrating to urban areas after facing near extinction from now banned pesticides in the 1950s.

The birds found tall buildings with largely inaccessible roof space ideal homes, along with a ready supply of food in London’s pigeon and parakeet population.

Sean added: “Peregrines are highly territorial and mate for life, so it is great they appear to have settled here. Their nearest neighbours are in Southall, with a further pair in Brentford.”

EWG is involved in a number of local conservation projects which includes the proposed reintroduction of beavers.

The group is applying for a licence for an enclosure trail at Paradise Fields, North Greenford.