Brief News in Bird World

7 July 2022

Do you remember holding your breath whenever the Highly Pathogenic Avian Flu H5N1 was mentioned? I recall looking at the falcons on The Campanile and the eaglets in the Channel Islands and just hoping that it would not land on those islands and wipe them out. Very very sad news is is coming out of the UK. H5N1 is in the north of Scotland and Shetland but today Coquet Island said that every chick on each of the 1964 Sandwich Tern nests has been killed by Avian Flu. Tragically, they believe that it will also wipe out every Roseate Tern as well.

Coquet Island is off the east coast of the UK just a little north of Newcastle-upon-Tyne in Northumberland.

Coquet Island” by Grand Mookster is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0.
Royal terns, Sandwich terns, Least terns, Forster’s Terns, Caspian Terns and Black Skimmers taking flight on the Gulf Coast, North Beach, Fort De Soto Park, Saint Petersburg, Florida” by diana_robinson is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.
Roseate terns/ Palometas” by USFWS/Southeast is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Suzanne Arnold Horning – thankfully – has her camera with her just when she needs it. She caught the 3 Ls on a fence at Cornell today.

Can you tell who is who?

Lancer has been playing with sticks on the nest…often the Red-tail hawks will play with pinecones to help with their eye-talon coordination. This is a very cute video of Lancer having some fun. It reminds me of the Finnish Osprey couple pulling on their fish!

As well as being asked if the females ever go fishing for the osplets, I am often asked if the males ever feed their chicks. Many do! This is Aran at the Glaslyn nest today feeding his triplets.

Awwww. They finally lined up.

The beautiful Glaslyn Valley – home to Aran and Mrs G.

It is that golden glow of evening on the Dyfi Nest. Idris has brought in a nice fish for the end of the day and Telyn is busy feeding those three growing bigger girls. The weather is nice just like it is at Glaslyn.

Oh, Dorcha is feeding her big girl and boy their last meal at Loch Arkaig. It looks like she had a nice weather day – well, deserved.

The cam operator caught two of Dylan and Seren’s chicks close up. Oh, they are gorgeous. There is a third – it hasn’t gone anywhere! Just sleeping between the two. We do not need any more excitement in Osprey Land this week. Seren has also been fishing – bringing in some nice fish from the reservoir when she thinks Dylan hasn’t provided enough. Go Seren!

At the Boathouse on Hog Island, Skiff brought in a fish. It looks like Little Bob – Peanut to some – is getting another private feeding. ‘H’ mentioned to me the nautical names given to the trio – schooner, Skipjack, and Sloop. So Little Bob or Peanut is really Sloop. Did they intend for him to be a small anti-submarine warship from WWII or a sailboat with a single mast?

Big ones are full enough and Sloop gets some nice fish all by himself. I continue to praise these first time parents. They are doing fantastic.

If you have been watching the Cornell Kestrels in Wisconsin, there was a fledging frenzy today. Here it is if you missed it. All four took flight.

A few days ago ‘L’ asked about Malena and Klepetan, the White Storks who had their nest on the roof of Stjepan Vokic’s house in Croatia. Malena had been shot by a poacher and left to die. Vokic rescued her and Malena lived with him for 28 years. For 19 of those years, her mate Klepetan flew from South Africa to Croatia. The couple raised 66 White Storks to fledge with the help of Vokic.

Surprise! I found a book, Malena and Klepetan. A Love Story on Wings by Jillian Marie Shea.

The author puts several quotes in the front. One says, “You must write for children the same way you write for adults, only better.” That is the nacre of this book!

The book is rightfully dedicated to Stjepan Vokic – who would win my vote for Gold-level Interventionist. “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” A good reminder that we have the capacity to give our feathered friends a second chance– if we will only reach out and do it – because, like Malena, so many of their tragedies are due to us.

It’s a feel good book – for all of us!

Thank you so much for joining me today. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cornell Bird Lab, Explore.org and Audubon, CarnyXWild, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Wildlife Trust, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, and Suzanne Arnold Horning.

2 Comments

  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Oh Mary Ann thank you for finding the book about Melina and Klepetan. ❤️❤️
    I hope I can find it and buy it. I can’t wait to read it! Such a wonderful love story!
    So sorry to hear about the poor Terns. 🙏 I pray the others will not get the awful flu. 🙏
    Thanks for all the photos of these beautiful nests accross the globe.
    Take care and see you soon !
    Linda

    1. Hi Linda. I just checked for you. You can purchase it from Amazon.com for 15$ and some change. It is a lovely book. And you can share it with your granddaughters. Oh, the islands in the UK are getting hit very badly with this avian flu. We are hoping that Doddie JJ6 is no longer on Shetland. It could wipe out huge populations of birds.

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