Harriet and M15 return to nest tree…and other brief news in Bird World

1 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

It is a super cloudy day on the Canadian Prairies and the bird feeders and baths are relatively quiet this morning. The visitors have been mostly the Crows who, for some strange reason, have decided they only want to eat the dried corn off the cob this morning – nothing else. No cheesy sandwiches. Nothing but dry corn. It is 11 degrees C as I write.

The big news in Bird World – and there is lots going on – is the arrival of Harriet and M15 back at their nest tree. Thank you bogs for getting images and posting them! With all the damage that the hurricane left behind, there should be no shortage of building materials even just on the Pritchett property. I know that all of you will be so relieved that they survived and this gives us great hope for Lena and the eagles over at Captiva.

Thank you Linda Russo for sharing your image and providing such relief and hope to everyone that the nest will be rebuilt!

Samson and Gabby are fine and they have been seen at their nest near Jacksonville, Florida.

Ron and Rita are back to their nest in the Miami Zoo. It is nice to see that they are also safe and sound. We wait to hear about Captiva – all the wildlife there – and Pink Shell Resort.

There were two and then there were three eyases at the 367 Collins Street scrape yesterday. Mum has done a great job feeding them – and herself – from a single pigeon carcass which appears to be depleted now. Everyone is wondering if her thwarting of male2 is because he is arriving empty taloned? Let us all keep a close eye today to see if she has new prey items. Let us all hope that the young male brings in a nice fat pigeon first thing.

Of course, there were tears and cheers when Xavier and Diamond’s had their first hatch of the 2022 season. What a fantastic falcon family!

For those of you just learning about falcons and hawks, I want you to look at the yellow eye ring, the cere (the part of the beak between the black razor sharp tip and the forehead) and the legs. Notice that deep rich orange-yellow colour. This is an indication of a super healthy bird. To me, Xavier and Diamond seem to be in much better physical shape this year than last.

This is Xavier who is delighted to get time with his newly hatched eyas.

Will there be another hatch at Orange today? We wait.

The Sydney Sea Eagles are still home! They are so big. Dad and Lady continue to fly from the branch showing the sea eagles a good spot to fledge from. Fingers crossed that the Currawongs leave our beautiful SE29 and SE30 alone! I know – it is wishful thinking but, gosh I wish they were otherwise occupied elsewhere when these two fledge.

That was some dust up between Big and Middle Bob at Port Lincoln yesterday. Poor Little Bob got caught, literally, in the middle of this spat for dominance on that nest.

Dad brought a nice sized fish to the nest at 1700 and Mum filled the trio to the brim. The cam operator gave us some incredibly beautiful close ups.

Little Bob was right up there and look at that nice crop before bed. Fantastic. None of the osplets seem to be the worst for the big battle, lasting more than six minutes, that occurred a few hours earlier.

Everything was fine at all four of the Australian nests when lights when out for the night. ‘A’ sent me a note to remind me – and all of us – that Daylight Savings time starts in Australia just about now! I also want to remind everyone that Big Bob is 14 days old today.

In other news, Scottish landowners who have grouse hunting estates continue to deny killing raptors even in the face of the evidence of the 9 found in bags at the Millden Estate. The movement to make Red Grouse hunting illegal continues by those that are concerned about the killing of raptors that are being re-introduced into the UK after being wiped out by shooting, egg collecting, habitat loss, and climate change.

Scottish Land & Estates still refusing to acknowledge extent of raptor persecution on grouse moors – Raptor Persecution UK

Thank you so much for being with me this morning. It is so nice to have you here with us. I will do a round up of the days happenings later today. For now, everyone should be sleeping in Australia! Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for the images and streaming cams which make up my screen captures: Linda Russo, NEFL-AEF, WRDC, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.


  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Thanks Mary Ann for this wonderful news
    Hallelujah! Harriett and M15 are home!
    Rita and Ron too! Now we pray for Lena and the eagles 🙏
    So glad to hear there was no more rivalry with the three bobs and the ate well. 💕💕💕. Hopefully the beautiful sea eaglets won’t have to put up with the carrowangs this season. 🙏🙏❤️❤️
    Thanks you for the wonderful pics of all of them. Good wishes to Diamond and Xavier and the Melbourne Mom with her new little eyases too!
    We look
    Forward to your next newsletter
    Have a great Saturday Mary Ann

    1. It was so reassuring to see Harriet and M15 home. And yes, the PLOs did not fight – yet – today. I feel pretty certain that the single food delivery at 1500 the day prior started the insecurity but who knows. 1 and 2 don’t seem to like one another at all. So are they two females vying for dominance? I cannot wait to find out their genders but, for now, it is nice to see them being calm. Diamond and Xavier are adorable and the Melbourne Mum is doing fine. She has her own Xavier now.

  2. Alison says:

    Absolutely thrilled at the good news on Harriet and M15 in Fort Myers. That is wonderful. Gabby and Samson also. And the others. We knew they were smart enough to know where to ride out the storm!
    I’m a bit confused by your comment about the five years of experience of the parents at Collins Street. I thought we all had all agreed that the mum is a new mum and that the dad is probably a first-timer as well (based on his behaviour, the chicks are a bit of a mystery to him). The new pair seem to be developing a bond that will hopefully result in enough food for the four eyases being brought to the scrape. We can only wait, watch and hope.

    1. As you and I have talked about, these birds are so intelligent! And so are goldfish!!!!!! Wish us humans had some of their smarts. Oh, my, I must fix that. Of course she is a new Mum. They are both new. It had to do with watching the cam there but obviously I had a brain freeze at that moment and will fix it, thanks so much, Alison!

  3. Alison says:

    The four at Collins Street have had breakfast, as have the osplets at Port Lincoln, who are all way too full for any of yesterday’s bonking antics. Xavier just brought prey to the scrape in Orange but perhaps it was starling because Diamond did not appear at all interested so Xavier left again (with the prey). The box cam is still on pre-daylight savings time at Orange – it is actually 09:20 local time (08:50 at PLO).

    1. Are there four? Oh, geez. I missed a head! I wonder, Alison, if the food delay a couple of days ago when the osplets had only one fish and it was around 1500 has really set off a worry about enough food to feed them. There is no worry but, in the head of 1 and 2. That was a particularly brutal attack but …thankfully, like you said, they are full as ticks and being nice.

  4. BEVERLY says:

    When I first saw Harriet and M15’s nest tree, I wept. I don’t cry but the view devastated me. And this morning (Tasmania) to read they were back in their nest tree just filled my heart with love and relief. I thought, what must these beautiful birds be thinking, where is our nest home, what happened? Like you said, there will be plenty of building material on the Pritchett Farm for sure. I hope all the horses and other animals there are safe.

    I am also anxiously waiting to hear about Lena and Andy and the eagles on Captiva.

    My heart is filled with love and concern for all “our” bird families. Diamond & Xavier just make me smile and love them more. I’m a bit concerned about CBD Melbourne, Mom is having to hunt, feed, and cuddle all by herself. We need a real Dad to step up, like Alden.

    Thank you from the bottom of my heart for this info today about Harriet and M15 and the rest. And thank you for your awesome emails. You are the best!

    1. Oh, Beverly. You are so very welcome. I imagine that all of our collective tears about the arrival of Harriet and M15 back to their nest tree would have filled the Pritchett Pond if it wasn’t already full! They are much loved as are the Captiva ospreys and eagles. The sad part is we might not hear for months what has happened there. I plan to monitor Lori Covert’s Instagram account – and you can, too – to see if anything is posted. I understand that there is no bridge link at all to the barrier islands and that it is going to take some time before anything can be done there. They need cell service and Wifi to be able to transmit from the nest and I suspect as soon as they can it will be taken care of but, gosh, it is a worry. — As of this morning, it seems that the Mum at 367 Collins St has her Xavier! That is the best news of the day. What a relief.

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