Victor, Kisatchie E3, and more in Bird World

31 December 2022

Good Morning Everyone. Wishing each of you a wonderful end to 2022.

Today’s blog is brought to you by Dyson! Not only can Dyson ‘suck up’ birdseed quicker than any other squirrel I have ever met but, today, she figured out how to get the feeder off the hook, drop the seed cylinder onto the ground, and just sit there gobbling up all those fine black oil seeds, millet, peanuts, and cranberries. So clever. It would be impossible to get mad at her – she is curious, intelligent, and a hard worker! She is a survivor in an urban environment that is not always friendly.

Isn’t she adorable?

From Dyson and all her friends in the garden, we wish each of you some tasty treats, good health, and love in the new year!

Now, let us deal with the sadness first. A juvenile Bald Eagle landed on the Delta 2 nest in British Columbia. Immediately it was noticed that the juvie had lost a leg or a foot. The older eagles brought it some food. Sadly, yesterday, the bird was found dead at the foot of the nest in very emaciated condition.

Then on to the good news. Recognise this beautiful juvenile? Hint: Hatched in the Channel Islands. Sister: Lillibet. Was taken into care due to extreme zinc toxicity. It’s handsome, strong, and resilient Victor!!!!!!!

There is even more good news.

Kingpin and Redwood Queen’s offspring, California Condor 1030 Iniko, was caught in her nest during the Dolan Fire of August 2020 in Big Sur. The nest tree burned and so did the streaming cam and no one knew if Iniko survived. But, miracles do happen, and Iniko survived and Redwood Queen came back and took care of her little one. Kingpin is presumed to have died in the fire. Then a male condor came and there was a fight and Iniko fledged too early and was injured. Taken to the Los Angeles Zoo, Iniko was released into the wild a year ago along with two other condors, Rachel Carlson and Dian Fossy at San Simeon. Today photographs of Iniko in the wild were released. Doing well!

Please, always keep in mind that there are so few California Condors. Their lives are precarious and they often die because of lead poisoning from the carrion they eat and are now susceptible to Avian Flu (eating dead diseased birds). Always grateful to the Ventana Wildlife Society for the work they do to protect and rehabilitate these birds and make the wilder safe for them.

Both eagles E3-01 and E3-02 at the Kistachie National Forest nest of Alex and Andria are doing well. That little one (02) got some good bites today and there is so much food on that nest! Still the parents love to eat, too, and the little ones got full, Mum ate, and they wanted some more. They didn’t get any but, it won’t be long before another feeding. Andria is doing fantastic.

Pine has been brought in to help with the flies. I wonder if it works as a deodoriser, too??

Look at those precious little wings. 02 has already learned to balance using its wings! Incredible.

Highlights of the feedings at E3:

The cam operator at Superbeaks did some nice close ups of the nest on Friday afternoon. There are two eaglets. Squint in the image to see the two. Just look at the crop on that one that we can see clearly. Goodness gracious. You can also imagine how big they are compared to the wee ones at Kisatchie.

Gabby and V3 are working on the nest. They fly in and out and he brings prey. Life seems to have settled down at The Hamlet near Jacksonville, Florida for our beautiful girl.

Jackie and Shadow have been working on their nest at Big Bear almost daily and today they had a little help from Fiona.

Elain’s highlights from the scrape of Diamond, Xavier, and Indigo for 30 December. Some bonding and then comes screaming Indigo. You can sure tell that Indigo is related to Izzi!!!!!!!!!!

Before 0700, one of the adults, it looked like Dad’s legs, delivered a breakfast fish to Zoe in the nest. It was a really nice fish and it looks like Zoe still has a crop at 1100 hrs.

At 1415, Mum brought in another portion of a fish, a decent size, to Zoe. There were times in-between these two prey drops to Zoe that she was picking up sticks on the nest, resting, and was off the nest. She did appear to have a crop at noon. Was there another fish? Perhaps. I could not see it in the rewind but that does not mean she did not eat off camera.

Cooper’s Hawk. A female often comes around the garden and in 2019, I was fortunate to be sitting on a bench in The English Garden, a part of our Assiniboine Park, when a pair of fledgling Cooper’s Hawks were hunting for insects.

I have been picking at that book, Slow Birding and came across some interesting facts about Cooper’s Hawks today. I would like to share one of those with you because it will shed some light on the efforts by all the bird parents to feed their young.

Heinz Meng studied the diets of Cooper’s Hawks in Ithaca, New York (Cornell) from 1948 to 1958 before their numbers were decimated by DDT. He discovered that it took 66 birds or mammals to raise a single Cooper’s Hawk chick to fledgling at 6 weeks. As the nestlings grew the number of prey items increased. “On a daily basis, this is four meals a day in the first week, five a day during the second week, then varying between seven and nine prey a day during the remaining weeks.” That is a lot of food for each chick – and this does not count the mother while she is incubating the eggs. Now imagine much larger birds, on the nest for a longer period, like eagles and ospreys. Those males work darn hard!

Did you ever think about a bird’s beak or bill? Next time you are looking at different birds, pay particular attention to the part that makes certain that they can consume their food whether it be seeds, insects, or prey items. In the instance of the Common Crossbill, their beak – look at it – means that they have to live in pine forests. They would starve to death otherwise!

Last a call for rodents and frozen fish for Clay the Eagle from my childhood home state of Oklahoma. Smart eagle to go back to where it was rescued the first time! Poor thing. Do you know anyone there who can help?

As we leave 2022 behind, it is natural for most of us to make a list of ways that we would like to change our lives – our New Year’s resolutions. I do not know if we can slow our planet down from climate crisis demise but, I do know that I want to find more ways to be useful. One of the things that Slow Birding taught me is that we should start in our own homes and gardens. Do the best we can with what we have. Remember – the wildlife rehabilitation centres near you need clean old towels just as much as they need donations of money. Know someone who has lost a pet and has lots of food left? Wildlife rehabilitation centres take pet food, too. Clean gently used sheets. Check their websites for they will often have a wish list.

Also remember to be gentle to yourself in 2022. Remember – if you can – that a walk outside. It removes all the pressures of the day. Just 5 minutes can change a bad day into a good one!

Happy New Year Everyone!

Thank you to the following for their posts, their videos, and their streaming cams that make up my screen captures today: Terry Carman and Bald Eagles Live nest Cams and News, Stephanie Ross and the Channel Islands Eagle Lovers, Tim Huntington and Webnectar Photograph, KNF-E3, Superbeaks, NEFL-AEF, FOBBV, Elain and Charles Sturt Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and The Guardian.


  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Good morning and thank you Mary Ann! Happy New Year to you and yours. 🤗
    Dyson is an adorable little squirrel and is very smart indeed! She really loves her food! ❤️ So glad about Victor and that he made the top on the list. ❤️🦅 so glad to hear the good news about Indiko!❤️It is very sad about Clay.🙏 I cannot understand what is wrong with him though. I am praying for his foot which had turned purple. He seemed to be very friendly and was eating and drinking water. 🙏❤️🦅
    It is very sad about the juvenile eagle who had lost his leg/foot at the Delta 2 nest. I wonder if he/she had got it caught in a fence or some trap or something somewhere. I wish it could have been rescued in time to fight the infection that must have set up 💔May this young eagle Rest in Peace and never suffer anymore 🙏
    So glad that both little bitties are eating good at kistachie nest 💕💕and superbeaks eaglets look so cute peeping out the top of the nest too. 💕💕
    The crossbills are always amazing at how they can eat. Thanks for the picture!
    Thanks for the updates on Gabby and V3 and Indigo and Zoe and Jackie’s nest too!
    Thanks Mary Ann for all the photos and updates today and videos and links too!
    So enjoyable on this New Years Eve!
    Have a good New Years Eve and take care!

    1. Hi Linda, Thank you for your note. It is always good to hear from you I know that you are going to get upset and the only thing you can do is pressure the federal government to change their regulations but, apparently Clay had to be euthanised because of their policies and regulations. No eagles can be kept in rehab that have only one leg. So…I am just shocked that if you can make a 3D beak for an eagle to eat with you cannot make a bionic leg!!!!!!!! Or at least try. Wishing you and your family all the very best in the new year, Linda. It is so nice having you with us!

  2. Wishing you a happy new year also, Mary Ann! Hopefully it’ll be a good one for all our birds and other wildlife.
    Thank you so much for all you do — for enriching our lives with the latest bird news, photos, videos, and helpful information. You are definitely making a difference in this world!

    1. Oh, thank you so much, Betty. Oh, I sure do hope it is a better year. I worry about Avian Flu and all the extreme weather but there are some things that we cannot immediately fix. I cannot tell an eagle not to go and catch a Coot that is in the water but, I am sure we would all like to since many of the waterfowl carry the flu. But, we live in hope always. I hope that your year is a very good one, too. Thank you for caring so much about our environment and our birds, Betty.

      1. Linda Kontol says:

        I agree Mary Ann! It is very sad.
        Thanks for all you do for the birds and I wish more people were like you too! We pray for a better year and that the avian flu doesn’t strike our birds and wildlife. It’s so sad that nothing is being done about the lead to prevent the poisoning in our birds😢.
        Hope to hear from you again soon and take care Mary Ann

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