11 January 2022
Good Morning Everyone,
The month of January is flying by. My children are back in their classrooms teaching and I am enjoying the benefits of retirement – being here with you and the birds. I must begin with a request. If you have been writing to me at my outlook address (check your e-mail) and I have not responded, my apologies. Lewis finally chewed through the entire cord despite my putting electric tape all over it. He does not like the cord to the Mac Air – thank goodness. I will get a replacement but, I think moving forward please send letters to me at this address now that I have this other machine: email@example.com
Doesn’t he just look innocent? I blamed it on teething but I think Lewis is just ‘nuts’ about dangly things. In the image below, he has uncovered a window that was ‘wrapped’ so that he could not get to it. Surprise! The foamy stuff that has dried over the years caused me great anxiety. Of course – he found it! Terrible Mum put him in ‘time out’ until I could remove the window to the basement! You would have thought I was pulling his toe nails out. Poor thing. I wonder what he will think when I do trim those nails this evening?
Missy is a very big girl and she is not even six months old. That is the beautiful blanket that was given to her when she was adopted – I love the pastel granny squares. Perfect for such a sweet girl. The issue is her size! This is my grandmother’s old quarter-cut oak dining table. It is 50 inches in circumference (without the leaves) or 127 cm. Stretched out Missy is 38 inches or 96.52. How do you say Maine Coon? BTW. Yes, they have taken over the dining room table. They like the light on – like a heat lamp!!!!!!!
They are not fighting. Missy sleeps with her head on Lewis’s leg. Seriously. They are almost always inseparable. Never seen anything like it.
In the Mailbox:
Question: ‘A’ wonders if Indigo is capable of catching his own prey.
Answer: The majority of the resources that I read and have checked state that Peregrine Falcon Fledglings in North America can and do catch their own prey after about 4 weeks from leaving the scrape. So Indigo is certainly capable. He has been bringing in beetles which we all presume that he has caught. It reminds me of Izzi with his cicadas and then eating them like popsicles on the ledge of the scrape. If Indigo has not caught a bird yet, he is able to and should be doing so soon. I asked how much an adult peregrine needs to eat in a day and from several centres that do peregrine falcon recovery, the answer is approximately 70 grams of food a day is good for an adult – that is apparently equivalent to two Starlings or Blackbirds.
This video is actually from the 30th of December so it is now 12 days ago. Indigo arrives at the scrape with a large bug. He is so pleased with himself over these bug catches that it leads one to believe that they are his first successful hunting forays. Good protein in those bugs, too, for our young lad.
In the News:
Gemeff sent me this news item the other morning and it was too late to include in my blog for that day. You might think that egg collecting and putting feathers in ladies hats died out in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Turns out Scotland Yard has been working on Operation Easter Egg for 25 years. This is very sad, indeed. I am reminded of the four eggs stolen from Taiaroa Head where the Royal Albatross nest late in 2022. Despicable. You can find the entire story at Raptor Persecution UK.
‘A’ has written to me about the torrential rains and flooding that Melbourne has experienced. Have you ‘A’ or any of our other readers in Melbourne seen these floating platforms? and if so, are they working to help wildlife? I would love to have a personal account. They look brilliant and I am reminded of the floating loon nests that I just wrote about in my blog posted on 10 January.
Most of the people who read my blog know that helping wildlife makes you feel good. Many of us recognise the animals that come regularly to our gardens. An article appearing today in The Guardian carries the following message from the author:
Getting to know animals as individuals with varying personalities and behaviour grants them elevated importance. But be aware that it is likely to push you closer to vegetarianism and inspire you towards conservation. Because once you have a relationship and an attachment to another living creature, they become part of your sphere of compassion. And then there is no choice but to protect both the animal and its environment.Kate Ahmad, The Guardian, Befriending a wild animal will make you a better human – here’s why
Ever wondered what it would be like to go to a Red Kite feeding station? I have and I would love to see these magnificent raptors. The Bellymack Hill Feeding Station is near Castle Douglas and the Galloway Red Kite Trail. This is a great little 10:04 minute video created by visitors to see the kites being fed. They also got to see other farm animals. At 1400 every day, food is put out for the raptors. They have hides where you can watch. Your admission helps buy the food. So, if you travel to anywhere in the UK, check and see if there is a Red Kite feeding station! Watch them for me! And if I get there first, I will publish lots of photos.
We all have dreams and like seeing Red Kites in the Wild come to feed, I really would like to see Ospreys migrating to their winter homes and then go on a trek to photograph and count them in those winter regions. Jean-Marie duPart goes up and down the Senegalese coast and into the parks and rivers in search of ospreys and he reports back. There seems to be more good news this year for various nests. You can catch his reports on FB by searching for his name: Jean-Marie Depart. He works for Nature et Oiseaux Sénégal .
The Nests We are Watching (some of them):
Connie and Clive’s first eaglet together is a cutie – CE9. So happy for this eagle couple after all they have been through.
Little eaglet is tuckered out. Hatching is hard work!
Some fish for the wee one? That first feeding will just be little bits and bobs and some fish juice and saliva. It is actually unclear whether the eaglet has been fed. Certainly Connie has eaten!!!!! Little one will be strong and hungry tomorrow morning screaming for fish.
Lady Hawk caught the hatch in a video. Dad Clive was on the nest when it hatched. The chick hatched at 11:22 on Tuesday. For whatever reason, Connie has yet to feed it despite fish on the nest.
Louis and Anna’s little eaglet is a chubby little one…so sweet. Anna is already covering up Louis’s fish – hoping that those nasty flies and mosquitoes will stay away. Maybe these nests need Zappers! I think the fact that the beautiful Spirit Bluff peregrine falcon chicks jumped to their death because of black flies has me on edge now when I see lots of insects. And, yes…we need insects. I am not proposing that we don’t have them. We need more actually but, maybe just not on smelly eagle nests when there are babies.
KNF E#-01 and 02 are doing well. Both have had big crops and there is no issue about an eaglet not being fed. Everything is going along fine.
It continues to look like Pearl is self feeding at the Superbeaks nest while Tico is being fed …that said, Muhlady also feeds Pearl but the oldest eaglet is trying. She is just over a month old.
At the Southwest Florida Bald Eagle nest, Harriet got a break around 0742 Tuesday morning. M15 took over the feeding and let Mum hang out having a break. M15 is fantastic. I love it when he feeds the eaglets because each gets to eat. He will also step in and feed the little one, this year little E22, if 21 is getting the majority. I often wonder if he came from a nest where he was the last hatch with a big sister? Things are fine at this nest!
These kids had a bunny breakfast. While eagles bring many things to their nests, some of the prey M15 delivers is road kill – bunnies, cats, etc. Bald Eagles eat almost anything – fish, ducks, Coots that they have caught, other mammals they have hunted, and carrion.
M15 and Harriet have given E22 several little private feedings. Fantastic.
The weather is nasty at the nest of Shadow and Jackie in Big Bear Valley today. Strong howling winds, blowing snow/ice. I really hope our gal doesn’t decide to lay her eggs during this period of bad weather. This storm caused power outages, etc even in San Jose where Sequoia has her scrape (an hour south approximately).
The winds have calmed down slightly.
They have calmed down for Sequoia, also.
It poured on the University of California-Berkeley campus. I hope that Annie is safe. So glad no chicks in the nest for Annie. Weather, wet weather, is difficult when there are new chicks. Many studies show that the decline in Peregrine Falcons in the far northern region is often due to rain – the damp cold and hunting for prey become issues for the adults.
The weather looks pretty good in Iowa. Both eagles were at the nest at Decorah, near the trout hatchery, at dawn. They later worked on the nest.
In Australia, Zoe was at the nest early hoping for a fish on the 11th. Before Dad arrived she turned and I would almost guess she had already had something to eat. Look at her profile. This is at 07:11. I think our girl is catching fish although it is a bit of a mystery. She did leave the nest between dawn and the time the fish was delivered. Was it enough? or did she get a fish drop off camera? I am so curious about this huge crop.
Dad obliged at 0714. Zoe is 116 days old today (115 when this fish was delivered in Australia).
For Achieva Osprey fans, Diane and Jack have both been at the nest today in St Petersburg, Florida. Jack brought Diane a fish and Diane was seen defending the nest. Her leg must be getting better. Such good news! Now if a fairy would repair the hole in the centre of that nest.
Thank you so much for being with me today. It is so exciting having a few more little eaglets to enjoy – and also to have a few nests with eaglets developing at different stages. It is a real way to visually see the changes from week to week at different nests. Somehow I always find I remember these developments easier if I can ‘see’ them rather than read about them. We should be watching for pips at both Captiva and KNF-E1. Pips will be coming up at Barry College in a week or so. Take care all. See you soon!
Thank you to the following for their letters, tweets, announcements, blogs, and streaming cams that make up my screen captures today: ‘A’, Geemeff, Orange CSU Peregrine Falcons, Raptor Persecution UK, #BirdTheFeckAtHome, The Guardian, Red Kite Feeding YouTube Video, Window to Wildlife, Lady Hawk, KNF E1 and KNF E3, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Achieva Credit Union, Superbeaks, SWFL Eagles and D Pritchett, FOBBV, San Jose City Hall Falcons, Cal Falcons, Raptor Resource Project and Explore.org.