Monday in Bird World

2 October 2023

Good Morning Everyone,

Gosh, it is fantastic to bring some good news!

Sunday was a beautiful day on the Canadian Prairies. The garden temperature went to 24 C and was 21 C at 1730! The little songbirds were having a joyous time flittering about in the birdbaths. Calico and Hope watched from the Conservatory window.

Calico went out into the main house with Missey again today. Everything went well. These two get along and are not a threat to one another. Calico is quick and she got into the kitchen and Lewis darted at her. It was not as horrific as I imagined but, I am still not quite ready to handle a big confrontation. Hopefully the lingering dizziness from the Covid will be gone by tomorrow and we can give Lewis a go at being a gentleman.

Meanwhile, Calico is still in full Mamma mode so she is also a little rough at the edges. She immediately goes into protective mode if either Missey or Lewis appear to be getting near to Hope.

Calico is producing much milk for Hope, and our little lass got caught in the act! Hope is three months old today. She has been with us now for an entire month and I finally figured out how to ‘catch’ her without causing undue trauma. She went into a tiny padded ‘tent’ tonight. It is perfect. She needs her worming medicine so tomorrow we are going to accomplish that. At the same time I will give her some different tasty treats – that gooey chicken that comes in a tube – to get her to think only of yummy snacks and me. The way to Hope’s heart is directly related to treats and playing.

Hope is almost as big as Mamma but, I can tell when I pick up Calico and hold her close (she still loves being held and having our cheeks rub one another) that she is gaining weight. That makes me so happy.

There is good news coming out of Bird World. As I write this Sunday evening (20:13), there is an indication that the second chick at Orange is hatching! ‘A’ writes: “We can hear chirping from the second egg at Orange and several keen-eyed observers believe they can see a pip. Certainly, there is peeping on the box camera that is not coming from the chick that has been born. So chatters and mods alike are fairly confident that eyas number two is on its way. This was a very quick hatch – Indigo was the fastest ever at this scrape until this one, which I believe may have been faster (I’m not certain on that, but it was certainly a relatively quick hatch). The chick looks very large – some are saying it hatched because it could no longer fit in that egg! It was more a case of bursting out than breaking out. 

Diamond tried to feed the sweet little thing at three hours of age, at which point it was still exhausted and barely able to lift its head in response to mum’s gentle urgings. (It did manage to lift it though – it’s a strong little person – but of course was not interested in eating yet.) Mum is just a little overexcited I think.”

A very contented Xavier perched on the ledge while his second chick hatches. Oh, the fact that these two could be so close together is a blessing.

The first feeding of Diamond and Xavier’s baby.

And another…

The other good news coming on Sunday is the return of V3 to the streaming cam at the NEFL Bald Eagle nest of Gabby. ‘A’ caught up with some of the intrigue coming from the chat, “There is good news from NEFL, where V3 and Gabby were both seen at the nest tree during the day after Gabby had spent the night (it rained heavily pretty much all night and she was absolutely saturated) perched on Wallenda (in the nest tree). Our BOTG confirm that Gabby and V3 are perched and tucked for the night at the lumber yard tonight. This is such happy news. I think we are all rooting for Gabby and V3.”

Oh, let us hope that V3 and Gabby are left alone to raise a family this year.

Things are also going exceptionally well at Fort Myers. What a delight it is to see M15 with a new mate and a new beginning. He was everyone’s hero last year raising E21 and 22 from the beginning of February when Harriet disappeared. There was concern that M15 might lose his territory that he shared with Harriet without a mate – remember all those females? So it is heartwarming to see him working on a nest with his new mate.

Lady Hawk put together a compilation of images for us of the season beginning.

Mum and Dad waiting at Port Lincoln and Melbourne.

SE31 and 32 continue to grow their beautiful juvenile plumage. They are much more sturdy on their legs and we should be looking for branching shortly.

There are a couple of other things that I want to share with you. Geemeff sent me links to two videos. One is a short news blast about Tarzan, the logging horse, working with its handler at Lock Arkaig to rid the Caledonian forests of the invasive American Spruce trees. I love this quieter and more gentle to-the-land approach to solving the problem of non-native species.

The second is the third and final part of a series on wildlife in Scotland – the challenges and the solutions being undertaken. There are Ospreys!!!!!!!!!!! I hope that while we are in the middle of nest building or incubation you enjoy these.

A memorial service was held for Su and Otto, the long term resident Red-tail Hawks at Syracuse University on Sunday.

Lastly, two prominent male Bald Eagles are missing. Smitty, the mate of Bella, at the NCTC Bald Eagle nest, has not been seen since the 21st of September. The Dad at Pittsburgh-Hayes has been missing since 7 September and I will sadly be adding him to our Memorial Wall in a few days. Please send positive thoughts to both families.

Pip watch at Orange now for the second egg.

Thank you so much for being with me this morning. Please take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their notes, videos, articles, and streaming cams that helped me to write my newsletter this morning: ‘A, Geemeff’, NEFL-AEF, Lady Hawk and SW Florida Eagle Cam, Geemeff, Sydney Sea Eagles, 367 Collins St by Mirvac, PLO, and Red-tail Hawk Tales.


  1. Linda Kontol says:

    Thank you Mary Ann for this wonderful newsletter today! We are so glad your feeling better! The kittens are so pretty in their photos and I’m so happy for them. They are in the perfect place with you! What a Blessing you are to them
    And they are for you too!
    Thanks for sharing Lady Hawks video for us. Very nice indeed!  Bring tears to my eyes ❤️🦅❤️🦅❤️🦅❤️🦅
    Good to see M15 start a new season with a very nice mate and I look forward to them!
    The sea eaglets grow up so fast and I hope they don’t leave too soon. I hope the carrawongs  leave them alone too!
    Diamond and Xavier’s little one is so adorable eating it’s first meal! 💕
    Thank you for the video to watch in Scotland and for the  memorial for the red tailed hawks. So sad about them 🙏🙏
    I am so sad to hear that Smitty hasn’t returned and the Pa at the Hayes nest hasn’t returned. Prayers for them. 🙏🙏 Thanks for these updates Mary Ann! See you hear soon and take care of yourself.  

  2. Sassa Bird says:

    Hi, Mary Ann! Thank you for another lovely update! It’s always a joy to read about your feline friends. And I really hope you are getting better day by day. So happy to read about Diamond and Xavier’s strong first chick. And about M15 creating a new life with his mate. Truly appreciate every bit of good news. At the same time, I’m heartbroken over Smitty’s disappearance. A while ago he welcomed his Bella back after a long absence. I truly hope we can experience a miracle again and him finding his way back. They have been through so much already. Although not so well acquainted with the Pittsburgh Hayes nest, I’m saddened over male’s disappearance. They were also a very strong couple and have been known to produce large clutches and taking care of them in the best way possible. It’s so sad to begin bald eagle nesting season with such big losses already. Still hoping for a miracle, that’s the best we can do at this point.

    1. Oh, thank you. I am improving. It is so good to see some of the nests doing really well as they start off. Poor Smitty and Bella it is always something at their nest and it would be so sad to lose Smitty. Fingers crossed….both for him and PH Dad. In the meantime, those two cute little fluff balls in Orange are doing fantastic.

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