Ground Hog Day for Angel…Saturday in Bird World

6 May 2023

Good Morning Everyone,

It is a good morning, indeed. Angel caught a huge prey item, very late on Friday, and she and the baby ate. Yes, I peeked. I could not help myself. Tears. The little falcons were banded, Middle got a nice fish lunch at Achieva, and we will take it. We wait for the first hatch for Big Red and Arthur. That is a near perfect day in Bird World!

It was also a good day in the garden. I am enjoying watching the birds adapt to the new table feeder. Once the lilacs have their leaves, it is nearly impossible to see when they are at the feeders. In addition, I am trying to get them to eat the Bug and Nut suet and all the items on the tray instead of just Black Oil Seed. Dyson and her gang cannot clear up all the waste – and it is waste. So, fingers crossed. Every day more and more get comfortable and approach the table.

In addition to the European Starlings, Mr Crow, Mr Blue Jay, the Chickadees, and some Sparrows took items.

The Starlings prefer the Meal Worms. They are now in their full breeding colours, which makes them look like a fantastic night sky.

Seven Chickadees were flitting about this evening. You can see the leaves getting ready to burst open. We should have the most fragrant blowers in about three weeks!

It is the Hairy Woodpecker (male).

It took awhile to get a decent image of this female House Sparrow. Isn’t she lovely? So quietly beautiful in her greys, browns, rusts, with a little taupe.

The sun setting gives Big Red a beautiful glow. Tomorrow we will welcome M1. You could see Big Red’s demeanour change today once the pip had started. She loves being a Mum and taking care of little chicks. I cannot wait! Arthur will be such a good help.

The pip at 19:02 Friday evening.

Saturday morning at the nest of Big Red and Arthur.

Let’s start with Avian Flu. We know it is out there and we cannot ignore it. Right now in The Gambia, one of the major migratory flyways, we have to help. In the UK, the number of birds estimated to have died is more than double what was initially thought.

Geemeff and I are asking everyone who can match our donations of 24 GBP, which will supply a boat to help rid an island of dead and dying birds in The Gambia. All of the money goes directly to the project being headed up by Sasha Dench of Conservation Without Borders; there are no hidden administrative fees, etc. Every penny goes to help eliminate those dead and dying birds and protect the workers out in the field. And just for the record, donations of 2 GBP are welcome. Every penny matters. We know that people are strapped and that many good causes already exist. Every penny helps…so please do not baulk at the cost of a cup of coffee and think it doesn’t matter. It does! Thank you so much and please pass the information around.

Here is the video discussion by Sasha Dench on why this is so important to all of us.

Here is where you can help:

The Q & A by Cal Falcons was excellent. Here it is if you did not see it live.

This year there are two females and one little male in the scrape of Annie and Lou. This is an historic first for this nest as Annie has always had more males than females!

This is also the first year that Annie was really aggressive towards the banders so hard hats will not be required in the future. Even that sizeable first-hatch female was very aggressive. They do not know if the other female is the second or third hatch.

In the image below, the male has a yellow band. That is the big female with the red band and the smaller female with the blue.

How did Annie and Lou react after? Well, SK Hideaways caught it all on video! Watch it all. Very interesting! Love the humour. Annie and Lou continued for 3 hours on their vigilant patrols. Meanwhile, the chicks were fast asleep half an hour after the banding.

Here is a great article on the banding with links to the naming contest. There are two, one for adults and one for children…

Manchester New Hampshire Peregrine Falcon has two hatches and a pip. Oh, how quickly those little pink beaks and toes change.

There were some questions about bird strike an Lynn said that she gives her son Window Markers. They are washable and he can draw to his heart’s content and there has been on window strike at all! Spread the news! If you use decals, my nature centre says they must go on the outside to be effective.

There has been great interest in the advantages and disadvantages that Leucistic birds have because of Angel and her nest in Tennessee. I have not been able to do as much on line research on this topic as I had hoped. ‘M’ found an article by the RSPB that might be of interest to go along with the earlier South American document posted earlier. It would appear that Angel is having problems hunting – whether it is her eyesight, hearing, colouration or all three or simply a lack of prey in the area is not clear.

Angel is staying away longer and longer trying to find food for both her and the baby. She has been unsuccessful and everyone was. concerned. The chick had not eaten for 30 hours. Then at 17:57:26, Angel brings in a large prey item, not certain what it is..a muskrat? Groud Hog? Angel and the baby will be able to feast. Tears! Absolute tears.

Angel fed her baby again at 1933 so it had a full tummy before night set in.

Angel is committed to keeping this baby alive and providing for it and herself. Send them your most positive energy. They will need it! — I cannot remember a year where we have had so many nests with single parents on live streaming cams.

This Ground Hog should keep then fed for at least another 36 hours, I hope…Angel will make sure nothing is wasted. We need to remember that she has also gone without and needs her strength to care for the baby and to hunt and be security guard.

Angel and Baby after their breakfast this morning. Angel is spending time keeping her little one warm and fed. I hope that Groundhogs rain from the sky!

An extremely large fish arrived on the Achieva Osprey nest Friday morning and both osplets, not just Big Bob, ate. Fantastic.

At the Moorings Park Osprey platform, it was gusty on Friday. Victor was working his wings and got his feet a little off the nest for less than a minute! Caught it for us.

The little one at Lake Murray is still hanging in there. Look at the size difference between the two older sibs and this sweetie. Fingers crossed. I have this secret hope that the two older siblings are males and this third hatch is a female.

A good look at the two osplets on the First Utility District platform.

Akecheta paid a visit to the old West End nest! So nice to see you!

The first Condor egg has hatched for the 2023 season.

At the SW Florida Eagle Cam, M15 and E22 were enjoying time together at the pond. Dad is later going to bring his ‘baby’ a nice big fish head – after he eats the body of the fish in the nest!

E22 is learning by observing M15. He was even pecking at the water trying to get a fish so he knows that fish are in ponds!

Gracie Shepherd got it on video.

‘H’ reports that the Osoyoos Osprey platform is still in a state of question. Are either of the birds there Soo or Olsen? are they both new? We wait.

The AEF has posted the following statement today; see below. We all understand that the Marina Association had no direct involvement in halting any rescue attempt of the eaglets. I have no comment on a couple of the statements other than if anyone sees anything on a nest, such as that at Dale Hollow, to alert USFWS and all wildlife rehabbers in the area. Do not wait for someone else to do it, and never let the comments of a moderator stop you.

I have made other suggestions (annual clean up at lake and change in the law) and if you have further ideas on how to not let DH18’s death not go in vain, send them to the AEF. This is their e-mail:

Murphy and his eaglet are doing well. It is so difficult to get a good grab from their videos to show you. The eaglet has its wings raised up and is stretching. Murphy is watching it.

This was Murphy’s eaglet several weeks ago when it first came into care.

What a difference a donation can make!

Let us all hope that Angel continues to catch large prey items for her and the baby. Thank you so much for being with me today. Please take care. See you soon!

Thank you to everyone for their notes, videos, posts, articles, and streaming cams that helped to make up my blog today: ‘S’, Geemeff, ‘H’, Cornell RTH, The Guardian, Conservation without Borders, Cal Falcons, SK Hideaways and Cal Falcons, Berkeley News, Manchester NH Falcons, Amazon/Crayola, RSPB, Window to Wildlife, Achieva Credit Union, Moorings Park Ospreys, Lake Murray Ospreys, First Utility District Ospreys, IWS, The Condor Cave, SW Florida Eagle Cam, Gracie Shepherd and SW Florida Eagle Cam, the AEF, World Bird Sanctuary, and Osoyoos City Hall.


  1. Alison says:

    So happy to see a fluffy hawklet under Big Red this afternoon. What joy! Perhaps RTHs are the most attentive mothers – I have only watched Big Red and Angel, and both are absolutely devoted to their babies. Angel is working so hard not to lose her second chick, though Tom is still not getting it through his head that the chick needs food, often!

    According to my reading, Angel apparently has hunting difficulties because her lack of pigment means the prey sees her coming. RTHs are beautifully camouflaged but she lacks that advantage. That groundhog was so large, she had to eat some of it to enable her to carry it to the nest. But that food is gone now, so on Sunday morning, she will need to hunt again. Fingers crossed that the rain stays away.

    Such good news re Dale Hollow. I will make no other comment except to say it is quite obvious that changes have been made behind the scenes as a result of the tragic loss of DH18, who suffered greatly and needlessly in the last week of its life. Perhaps his death will not be in vain, and future chicks at that nest will not have to go through what he did.

    1. Yes, changes are being made and this is a goo thing. Moderators of chats often live at a huge distance from the actual nest so I hope that they get good knowledgable people who will call when help is needed!

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