24 June 2023
Hello to Everyone,
It has been a very rough two days. In the six years, I have been monitoring nests for siblicide – and the many before that where I was observing behaviour – I have never had a spate of osplet deaths as we have seen in the past couple of weeks. Chicks dying for unknown reasons and now dying of starvation because of a storm. More chicks will die before Saturday morning and everyone is going to sleep with a very heavy heart.
There are many things that my father taught me by his example. My earliest memory was always helping those that were unable to help themselves. It did not matter if it was the birds, the stray cats and the dogs that people knew to leave because he would care for them and find homes or people. So, no one got in a boat, or a car to place fish on those osprey nests is beyond me. My only alternative tonight was to ensure all the garden animals were overfed. It is essential to stop, take a breath, and care for those that are nearby and need your help. So, this weekend, in memory of all the little ones that were lost, put out a water bowl, fill up a feeder, clean up human debris. While we mourn the lost ones, we need to remember to focus on those that are living. Their lives are as precariously balanced on the thinnest of wires and your generosity could save their family!
Before we start with todays news, I want everyone to have a ‘feel-good’ story to stay with them during some of the tragedies. Enjoy! Who knew that a laundry basket could bring such happiness?
And, yes, we are going to need a lot more happiness today…look at these two beautiful fledglings from the new West End nest of Thunder and Akecheta….but, wait. They are at the old nest! No worries. An adult was over on Tor keeping an eye. Gorgeous. And both seem to have crops.
I want to give a shout out to Louis at Loch Arkaig. As Geemeff says, Every nest could use a Louis’. No mater the weather, nothing stops him from getting fish on that nest.
Louis does it again Saturday morning.
When we hear of Black Friday, it is now most often associated with a shopping frenzy but, for me, the 22-23 June will now be the day that so many osplets died in a climate situation in the NE of the United States. The true toll will not be known until Saturday or Sunday on the streaming cams. The females who have kept their chicks warm and dry and watched them die have not eaten either. We could also lose them! I do not understand why the businesses and the wildlife associations that run the cameras are not prepared to step in and provide fish. Are not the frequency and severity of these storms signalling something to do with human-induced climate change?
Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ offered this explanation of the weather system that has caused such a catastrophic loss on the nests in the region – and to them, this is catastrophic having their entire family wiped out.
At Barnegat Light, after more than 60 hours, a fish came on the nest at 14:31:39. It appears that Daisy went fishing…she is wet. Will they all survive? We must wait to see. Big ate and so did Daisy – she has to. Middle was shut out and he has now not eaten (as of this fish delivery) for 53 hours. Duke has not been seen since yesterday afternoon and it is thought that he might be trying to find fish elsewhere – I think he has been injured in the storm and is MIA.
The tears are pouring…sadly, the fish came too late for Little Bob. Hopefully, Daisy will get more fish – and she did. She brought in another at 15:23. She has brought in two fish Saturday morning but Middle is too ill to eat. Middle is dying. Daisy has done amazing work and it looks like she might be able to keep herself and Big alive. How said that Middle is unable to eat some of that fish because Big is full.
Oscar has been bringing small fish for Opal and the two osplets at Forsythe. Anything helps – and ‘H’ noted that Oscar had 7 fish on the nest on Friday in difficult fishing conditions. It appears, however, that we will lose chick 3, Little. Mini has already passed and 3 was just barely alive at 19:38 on Friday and was not seen eating. It now appears that three has died leaving Dad Oscar, Mum Opal, and Owen and Ollie. With some luck, the oldest two might survive.
‘H’ reports on Forsythe for Saturday morning: “Bless dear Oscar, how stressful the previous days of bad weather must have been for him, knowing that his family depended on him, and he was not able to provide. Seems like he is trying to make up for it now, 8 fish deliveries before 9 am!” After a bit both of the chicks ate…this is good. These two might survive.
Not particularly happy with what is happening at Patchogue. Mini ate well on Wednesday and had some fish Thursday morning but those huge crops of the previous weeks are gone. The three big siblings are now up and eating first thing in the morning and Mini is often shut out. Let us hope that the good fishing returns.
Mini appears to continue to be shut out of fish. Will Dad bring a late night one so our Mini can eat? He will desperately need fish on Saturday if this keeps up.
It is a miserable Saturday at Patchogue but Mini was fed by Mum at 0824. Tears like the rain.
Severna Park was really wet, also. All the nests are getting some residues of that storm. Both seem to have eaten but the fish do not appear to be coming as regularly today.
The fish are small and are few but, thankfully, there is only one chick and the Cowlitz PUD osprey nest might just have a fledge this year when other nests have none. That is almost shocking.
The two osplets at the Great Bay Osprey platform in Greenland, New Hampshire, are eating some nice fish and doing well.
The Outerbanks had a nice big flat fish come in!
Oyster Bay appears to be OK. There is some problem with submission but the fish seem to be coming in.
Boulder County Fair Grounds is alright, too. The little one had a nice big crop as the sun was going down.
Mum fed Dad some of the fish before the chicks were fed. This is a sweet nest.
The large female and male of Laddie and Blue NC0 were ringed a few days ago. The female is Blue PF4 and came in at a hefty 1.85 kg, while the little male weighed 1.2 kg and is Blue PF5.
Three healthy chicks on the Osprey nest in Spain at the Urdaibai Biosphere.
Good News is coming out of Minnesota-
The Peregrine falcon scrape at Topeka Kansas has proven to be a bit of a mystery. The older siblings fledged a week or a bit ago. The third hatch – which appears to be developmental slow in getting its feathers – and appeared to have a problem with its eyes is beginning to look more like a falcon. It is not clear how much prey is brought to it on a daily basis but I will continue to call for an intervention if the adults are not delivering several food items a day…
Lady Hawk caught M15 and his lady friend at the pond! Some good news…and also, there is news that E22 was also seen at the pond at 1620 Friday. Life is good at SW Florida on the Pritchett Property.
Soledad is one of the fiercest Peregrine Falcons I have seen! Here she defends the scrape and she can only have thought that Monty was an intruder!
M1 returned to the nest when prey was delivered. All is well at the Red-tail hawk nest of Big Red and Arthur – it is perfect that she is flying so well and going on and off to the trees and buildings building up her skills. M2 fledged Friday leaving M3 on the nest alone Friday night.
Flying is hard work.
Deyani has been returning to the nest of Tom and Angel to get prey items, too. She has been following the adults when she sees them from her behaviour.
Other heartbreaking news. A goshawk has taken 2 of the 4 storklets off the Black Stork nest of Noteka and Nutka in the Noteka Forest in Poland.
In a freak event, the eldest goshawk at RSPB Loch Garten goshawks attacked the youngest, Mini 4, when a large prey item was delivered and killed its sibling. I have never seen this happen at a hawk nest.
After a horrific year of deaths due to HPAI, Sunnie Day reports that Bald Eagles in Georgia are on the rebound.
The latest BTO News came in the post today. There are many great articles, one is an opinion piece by Nick Acheson. He is the author of The Meaning of Geese. In all that he does – and Acheson does a lot- it is because of climate change that he says he wants to know that he has a clear conscience and has done his utmost to mitigate the climate crisis. ” I will have tried. At least I will have tried”. He has been a Vegetarian since childhood; he has given up animal products altogether, doesn’t drive, takes the bus, or uses his bicycle. He never flies anymore, and this young man could earn lots of money on the lecture circuit. He lives in a small Flint house in Norfolk that he also refuses to heat. Check out Nick’s website at http://www.themarshtit.com
Acheson believes that our window for doing something is closing fast – after 40 years of warnings. What I like about him is that he is unwilling to give up!
Nick’s worries are borne out by an article in The Guardian today but, they also show us that with a major effort we can turn some things around.
Thank you so much for being with me today. When it all gets too much, take a deep breath. Spend time with your pet, sit outside, and listen to the birds. We all get overwhelmed, especially when we want to do something to help and can’t. Take care of yourself. Amid the mourning, there is much joy, and now it is time to also celebrate that! See you soon.
Thank you to the following for their notes, posts, videos, and streaming cams that helped to make up my blog today: ‘Geemeff, H, L, SP, and T’, Nick Beres NC5, IWS/Explore, Geemeff and the Woodland Trust, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ, Forsythe Ospreys, PSEG, Severna Ospreys, Cowlitz PUD, Great Bay Ospreys, Outer Banks 24/7, Boulder County Fair Grounds Ospreys, LOTL and the Woodland Trust, Evergy Topeka, Lady Hawk and SW Florida Eagle Cam, SK Hideaways and San Jose City Hall Falcons, Cornell RTH, Window to Wildlife, Sunnie Day, The Guardian, BTO, and Twin Cities Metro Osprey Watch.