The Daisy Chronicles, Day 13-14

It is the middle of the afternoon in Sydney, Australia – Day 13. Daisy, the Pacific Black Duck who is incubating 8 eggs in a ‘borrowed’ nest from the White-Bellied Sea Eagles has had a quiet day.

Daisy still has a substantial amount of food left in that extended esophagus or crop. Just look at it. That is wonderful. She must take care of herself. It will give her the strength to take on the Ravens again if the pair of them should show up on the nest proper.

Daisy has removed a substantial amount of down in the last little while. That nest of hers is amazing. It is so beautiful.

Some down, a little wiggle and some egg rolling, and Daisy is settled in for more incubation and sleep.

I have just checked the weather and there is a 40% chance of rain at the nest at 19:00 and a 100% chance beginning at 20:00. That is the time that Daisy normally goes foraging. The rain is scheduled to continue throughout the night until 13:00 tomorrow afternoon. Why am I mentioning this? Well, it is important. Duck down shrinks or compacts. Daisy has had to rely on the duck down to not only insulate the eggs and make a nice comfy nest but she has also used it to cover the precious eggs. There are sadly not enough leaves on the nest to do that this clutch. Fingers crossed that Daisy is able to manage coming and going so that the down is not that impacted.

Gosh, she is a very special little duck – just beautiful. So sweet. The breeze continues to rock the old Ironbark Tree ever so gently.

That beautiful blue bill really sets Daisy apart from many ducks.

At 15:58 Daisy turned her head and listened. Something caught her attention. She was alert for a few minutes and then…nothing. She settled down and relaxed.

In a surprise move, Daisy flew off the nest at 18:36. Sunset is not until 20:02.

Oh, if the wind would only send some more leaves down right by those eggs!

Did Daisy leave because she needed to so that she could return before the rain begins? Did she need a comfort break after all the foraging before sunrise? Will the Ravens come while she is away?

The camera went offline and it is unclear to me when Daisy returned to her eggs. But at 02:02, her and her eggs are fine. Fantastic.

Daisy, you really are amazing –and we worry so much about you!

Daisy has been able to leave the nest untended during the evening/night with no worries. The cam operator caught a visitor to the nest that has the potential to cause our Daisy some serious problems, Boo-Book Owl and his mate! This was taken the night prior to this posting so all is well with the eggs.

I have not been able to determine if Boo and his mate actually eat eggs. The Duck eggs are quite large. While they might not, they could definitely wreck havoc by pecking at them or removing down which, at this time, is precious as it really is covering everything. Ah, I wish they had not noticed. These little owls cause such mischief when they fly through hitting Lady on the head or the nestling sea eagles.

The forecast for Day 14, 16 December 2021, is for it to be 22 degrees C and cloudy with a 40% chance of rain around 09:00. I wonder if Daisy is going to go on a break? It is getting close to when she should leave. Sunrise is at 05:39.

Daisy continues to wait to leave for her break. I wonder if those pesky possums are running around on that tree?

Daisy finally left for her break at 04:46:45. You can see her preparing to leave in the image below. She has pulled some more down off her breast and will be covering the eggs with the rest of the down and a few leaves.

There she is plucking off that down.

With the eggs covered as best she could, Daisy leaves to go and get some food.

Daisy returned to the nest at 06:08:22. You can just see her wings fluttering to the right of the rim of the big Sea Eagle nest.

Daisy is all settled and at this moment, everything is alright with the world. Take a deep breath everyone. Send all your good energy.

I will monitor Daisy through the rest of the day providing an update in about six or seven hours. Fingers crossed! We are on Day 14. Daisy has been incubating her eggs now for 7-8 days depending on how you want to count. This means that with the hatch watch from 26-30 days, we continue to look around the 4-6th of January, possibly as early as the 3rd. She is doing so well.

Thank you so much for joining me and for sending all your very best wishes to this little Pacific Black Duck who dared to make her nest in the big Sea Eagle tree nest. Stay safe. Be careful. See you soon.

Thank you to the Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

2 Comments

  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Oh Mary Ann I’m so glad Daisy is ok! I am worried about the owls. I know they are on utube or Facebook. I am glad to learn that Boo found a mate when the previous mate didn’t show up.
    Hope fully they won’t be any problems for Daisy and her eggs. I’m so glad all was well when she returned from her break. I look forward to new updates as you have them!
    Have a good afternoon!
    Linda

    1. I think Boo and his mate are curious about that down. Can you imagine having that soft down in their nests – the possum or Boo? Nice and soft! I hope they all stay away! Fingers crossed.

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