QT flies and Louis and Iris together

2 September 2022

Hello Everyone,

Two moments caught in time. One a fledge or was the chick carried out by the wind and storm early? and Iris and Louis together. Both left a real lump in my throat and little tears.

Quarry Track chick had her wings spread wide. The rain made the mud a little slippery where she had been gardening.

She looked up to the sky calling.

And she flew. It could not have been a more perfect fledge although it might be argued that the storm helped. Her legs are tucked up and really, she looked ready to go.

The Royal cam chick flew at 12:53 on the 3rd of September 2022. She was known as QT for Quarry Track chick but everyone knew her as the way it is pronounced…Cutie. The daughter of YRK and OGK, she is the full sister of another Royal cam chick, Pippa Atawhai of 2020.

The winds were blowing and it was raining hard. QT gave a couple of beautiful sky calls like she was announcing she is meeting her destiny and flapped her wings. The strong winds lifted her up and off the nest.

It was unexpected but it was a beautiful flight and I can’t help but believe she was ready to go. No doubt YRK will be wondering where her daughter is…and where her mate OGK is. This adorable dad has not been seen on land since the 19th of May.

Here is a video of that great flight:

Cornell posted a video of Iris and Louis on the nest yesterday. I have posted individual images yesterday but, enjoy the video. I do not know about anyone else but this feels like a very strange poignant moment – the two of them together, looking out at us.

No matter what anyone thinks or has thought about Louis, Iris is completely devoted to him. She seemed to visit the nest much more often if he was around this year.

Is this goodbye?

Thank you so much for joining me for these two rather touching moments in Bird World. I will look forward to seeing you tomorrow. Please take care.

Thank you to Cornell Bird Labs, NZ DOC, and Montana Ospreys for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures and video clip.


  1. Thank you so much, Mary Ann!!! I feel more confident now, knowing it was an intentional fledge for QT.

    1. You are so welcome. It was one of the ‘best’ fledges I have seen. QT will see lots of storms, huge waves, and rain out on the sea…but those sky calls were amazing that she made. So poignant.

      1. After watching the video a couple more times I see that you’re right, Mary Ann. I had missed those sky calls previously. And the fact that she was clearly in a state of excitement – in a joyful way. The very strong wind had me worried so I was appreciative of your reassurance. (Still managed to dream about her all night though! It’s amazing how emotionally involved we become with our birds. I’m now truly smitten with Albatrosses and have you to thank for getting me started watching QT back when she was just an egg!) Thanks again for your reporting on QT, and also on Iris and Louis. Another poignant story!

      2. Weren’t they lovely, Betty? There was something really special watching QT give those calls and then flying off to her destiny. It was such a powerful moment. You are very welcome. Sharon Dunne aka Lady Hawk does a great job reporting on QT so I try to stay out of it but my mailbox was full – not just you of very worried watchers. I am glad that it was intentional and we all wish her well. I am just sad she did not get a proper Maori name and did not get a tracker either. We cannot assume that they will stay around!

      3. I too am sad they didn’t give her a name before she fledged. Sounds like someone dropped the ball on that, but that they still might get it done eventually.

      4. It was quite strange this year. The event kept being put off along with the question of the satellite tracker. It is unfortunate.

  2. Linda Kontol says:

    Thank you Mary Ann for the updates. We will miss QT so much. What a beautiful sweetheart she is and wishing her a great life out there . I wonder if her friend flew too? Some think the wind from the storm took her on and she continued as she was hovering. 💖QT our Cutie
    I am just amazed at the photo and video of Iris and Louis. They have a bond to each other that is so loving. ❤️❤️ I wonder if both have flown together ? We will miss Iris till she returns in the Spring. Fly safe Iris . We all love you!❤️
    Have a great day!

  3. Linda Kontol says:

    Mary Ann I just watched the video again here and I think now that she was ready. She had shown signs of wanting to fly recently. Good luck QT! 💖
    I had hoped Dad OGK could have returned before she flew. I pray he is ok. Mom YRK was so faithful to come and feed her . Thanks to the Rangers for all their supplements too .

    1. Yes, she was ready! It was a beautiful fledge. They need that wind and the storms out at sea don’t seem to bother them. I hope we see her again in 5 or 6 years, Linda.

      1. Linda Kontol says:

        Yes I want to see her again too Mary Ann! And the others we followed too !
        Thanks for the reassurance and they have really given us some inspiration!❤️ Have a great Saturday!

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