Late Tuesday in Bird World

31 May 2022

I wish I could tell you that ND 17 our very own Little Bit was stuffing its face with fish right now but, that is not what is happening. So far as I can tell only a small fish has come on the nest today. Hoping for more fish later!

They are not raptors but I adore the Black Storks (and White ones) and I like to mention them now and again. The Black Storks are extremely rare in Estonia and Latvia making their nests mostly in the southern areas of the countries. These countries are the northernmost areas for Black Storks to breed. They are, thus, very special. Jan and Janika started out with six storklets in their nest in Estonia – five have survived. All five are doing well. The fifth one is small but it is right up there with the others eating well so I am hopeful — if food is plentiful that all will fledge. That nest is going to get awfully small when they start jumping around and flapping those wings. Janika brought in a large meal for all five!

The weather around the MN-DNR is gusty and wet like it is here. They are getting this same system that has moved north and east from Colorado. Nancy is on the nest feeding E1, Harriet. There appears to be a sub-adult on the perch. Nancy appears to be ignoring it at the moment.

Nancy leaves after feeding E1. The visiting sub-adult remains on the perch.

Later, Nancy is gone and so is the visitor.

It was hard to see Spirit take her first flight this morning. Spirit loves her food and I am pretty certain that Jackie and Shadow will lure her with prey. We will see if it is to the nest or off nest – time will tell. Spirit is 88 days 12 hours and 35 minutes old when she flies off the nest.

Remember when? What a beautiful couple with their miracle baby, Spirit.

Deb S caught Spirit’s fledge in a really short video clip. Oh, what a fabulous first flight. Soar high Spirit, stay safe, wishing you lots of fish and a long, long life.

The first sighting of Spirit caught after her fledge:

The three eyases at the Spartan Stadium scrape at the University of Michigan are losing their baby feathers just like the ones at Cal Falcons scrape.

The five eyases at the Manchester New Hampshire are watching as Mum is flying in with lunch!

Are you a fan of Tom and Audrey at the Chesapeake Conservancy Osprey Nest? If so, there is reason to celebrate. Audrey laid her fist egg of her second clutch today!

The Ls are getting bigger and restless. L1 ventured out to the fledge ledge today and anyone watching probably needed a double handful of worry beads. The chicks will run up and down the grate, stand and look out at the field and the trees from the fledge ledge days before actually flying. Big Red has been going and sitting there showing them where to take off so this is a good thing. L1 has been trying to climb the light box – a bad idea. J2 did fledge from there in 2020 but it is much easier to take off from the grate! at the ends! or in the middle between the bars in front. Fledge watch opens for L1 on Friday!

Gosh, I know it is nice to have the freshest fish but goodness it is scary when a live flappy one comes on the nest. That just happened to Telyn when Idris brought in a Flounder. You can hear her little cheeps when she is looking at the fish breathing.

Louis and Dorcha at their Loch Arkaig nest.

The newest addition to the Louis and Dorcha family! What a sweet little bundle.

Every chick got fed – again – at the Loch of the Lowes. Little Bob is doing good, holding its own there in the middle of its two big siblings who, if you look at the back of their heads, are changing plumage.

Aran has been getting the fish to Mrs G who is busy feeding the little ones.

It is hard to see the babies at Glacier Gardens but you sure can see the cars driving by!!!!!!! Would love to get in the head space of the Bald Eagles when they pick the site for a new nest.

They are beautiful and they are the Pittsburgh-Hayes trio! All have branched and they are flapping those wings just like the Three Amigos at the West End. Fledge is approaching!

Need to keep an eye on the US Steel Eaglets too. They have just received a prey drop and one of the adults is out on the branch giving some hints.

Fledge watch is officially on for Liberty and Guardian’s Star and Sentry at the Redding California Bald Eagle nest. Fledge should be from 29 May – 15 June. I love the wide window. That is about the same for the Pennsylvania eaglets at Pittsburg-Hayes and US Steel, too. They are all beautiful birds and we can knock on wood – none had the Avian Flu. What a relief.

The chicks at Cal Falcons are almost out of the scrape following the shade. They are hot and panting in the California heat. Look at the bottom and please go and vote so they have two great names!!!!!!

And last, but never least – the two Osplets on the UFlorida-Gainesville nest. At one time I thought we might wind up with only one chick on this nest. Big Bob was quite the terror. Middle persisted and we now have two beautiful birds getting ready to fledge. I counted six plus dark bands on Big Bob today but it is Middle Bob that looked like he would take off if a gust came!

Gosh these are beautiful raptors! Just stunning.

That is it for today. I just checked. It is nearing evening at the Notre-Dame nest. I wish beyond anything that two big fish come on that nest tonight. If not, Little Bit is still OK. Tomorrow evening if no fish have come in – or other prey – I will start to fret.

Thank you so much for joining me today. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or their FB pages: The Eagle Club of Estonia, ND-LEEF, Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dyfi Osprey Project, Pix Cams, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Woodland Trust, Friends of Loch Arkaig, People’s Postcode Lottery, and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Cal Falcons, Friends of Big Bear Valley, Friends of Redding Eagles, MN-DNR, Glacier Gardens, Explore.org, Peregrine Networks, and Spartan Stadium Peregrine Cam.

Sunday in Bird World

8 May 2022

I had a lovely letter from a friend today. Like so many of you, she has tried to watch some of the nests and gotten attached to the birds only to have her heart pulled out when an older sibling shoves them out of the nest or, in other instances, they were starved or killed by beaking or both. It has been a tough year on the nests. Tough even for me.

My friend pulled back and has started watching Big Red and Arthur’s nest on the campus of Cornell and Annie and Alden on the grounds of UC-Berkeley. Her question this morning was simply to clarify that hawks and falcons do not practice siblicide. The answer is that the preponderance of siblicide occurs in eagles (some species more than others), egrets, boobies, herons, pelicans and, I am going to add ospreys to that list. There are lots of reasons, some explored in earlier blogs but, it is safe to say that if you wish to enjoy the birds on the streaming bird cams, falcons and hawks are generally a very safe choice as are ducks and geese. Because the chicks are precocial (are fully feathered, can walk and swim and eat on their own), the ducks and geese need those chicks to hatch all at once. They delay full incubation until the last egg is laid. Robins do that too and so do hawks and falcons. In this way, the older chicks are not that much bigger (normally) than the younger. The ducks and geese and even the raptors need their babies to fledge at the same time. So incubating them so they will hatch together really helps. It is called synchronous hatching (begins hard incubation after the last egg is laid) as opposed to asynchronous hatching where the parent immediately begins hard incubation immediately after the first egg is laid.

Annie makes a kind of chee-up sound when she is ready to put the food in the beak. The chicks learn this. Annie might well give the biggest chick the first few bites but she immediately moves around giving the youngest some. Today, the Peregrine Falcon Mother at the scrape in Oudenaarde, Belgium spent a whole hour making sure that all 5 of her eyases were fed and full. No one left the table hungry. The Mum at the Manchester NH falcon nest also has five eyases. Not one of them went to bed hungry tonight despite their size difference – the smallest had a big crop just like the largest. That is what hawks and falcons do!

A clump of falcons in a feather bed.

The wee one is piled on top of one of the siblings to stay warm.

Here is Annie feeding her two chicks brunch on Mother’s Day! Watch carefully how she feeds the big one several bites, then the small one and then goes back and forth. Annie is a pro. Both are well fed!

And Cal Falcons posted a second feeding just a short time ago. It is really cute. Alden checks in on the babies who see an adult and open their beaks. Alden is so cautious and nervous. He It very happy when Annie arrives with lunch he provided in her beak from the other side of the scrape!

Here is that feeding. It is so cute. Notice how the little one gets full and then gets back up for some more. Falcons eat everything. Nothing is wasted. Some of the first few bites were feathers.

It doesn’t get much better than the Red-tail Hawk nest of Big Red and Arthur at Cornell. Little L4 is growing and surviving and well, I haven’t watched this nest 24/7 but I have not seen any tendencies by the oldest to interfere with the younger ones.

SF Bay Ospreys does not want us to forget about Rosie on Mother’s Day. I adore her and if there is an osprey nest in the US to watch that is stable – Rosie and Richmond in SF are it! —- Oh, and no. Ospreys are not prone to Avian Flu. They eat fish.

Someone dressed Spirit up. LOL. Good thing I don’t have the software to do this!!!!!!! I think Spirit is a Jackie in the making, too.

We all loved Kindness at Glacier Gardens. Many have been watching the nest cam and have been wondering where the eagles , Liberty and Freedom, are. Well, they have built a new nest! Here is the video reveal of that find:

The camera remains off line at the UFlorida-Osprey nest if you have been checking. It is unclear when it will be back on. If it is a mechanical issue it would be difficult since the chicks are older.

The Dale Hollow Eaglets have full crops and are drying off today. These two are doing very well.

Some nest renovations have been going on at the National Arboretum. I don’t think DC9 appreciated some of those branches.

At 2045 there is still no hatch at the Manton Bay nest of Blue 33 (11) and Maya. Maya is certainly restless tonight.

If you are a fan of Lady and Dad at the Sydney Sea Eagle nest in the Olympic Forest, you will know that the couple have been working on the nest. We are about three weeks away from the first egg being laid.

Where’s Ervie? Looks like he still hanging around the barge area of Port Lincoln. Fine by me!

It has been a busy day at all the nests and throughout different regions as the migratory birds continue to move through. My garden was full of White-throated and White-crowned Sparrows again today along with the usuals. The little Chickadee couple love to have a swim!

The Starling was not so pleased when Dyson came along and wanted some of the seeds.

Dyson is trying to try out for the local gymnastics team. Look at her stretch! She is losing her winter fur and the tufts on the end of her ears are gone. Ironically, her tail is much thicker. She is in really good health. Good to see.

I hope that each of you have had a wonderful day today and, hopefully, if you could, got to spend some time outside. It really is energizing – even for a few minutes sitting in the sun. Thank you so much for joining me today. It is a joy to have you here. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: SF Ospreys, Cal Falcons, Peregrine Falcon Network, Cornell RTH, Friends of Big Bear Valley, NADC-AEF, DHEC, Sea Eagle Cam@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, and the LRWT.

Winter Solstice in Bird World

As all of you know, Daisy the Duck has occupied my mind for some 20 days now without much of a break. She has just arrived home to the nest – it is the Summer Solstice 22 December in Australia – and I am going to take some time to check in on the other nests that are normally watched.

It has been a horrible day for Gabby who is incubating two eggs on the Northeast Florida Bald Eagle nest called The Hamlet. It is just outside Jacksonville.

Bald Eagles generally have 35 days of incubation. Gabby and Samson were really wise. They did not start hard incubation until the second egg was laid meaning that the two eaglets will be born close together with no older sibling advantage. They will just bop each other taking turns! This means that the hatch date is 19 January. Mark your calendars.

For me, this is great timing. Harriet and M15s eaglets are set to hatch in 3-4 days. We won’t be watching two bobble head nests at once. Oh, those high winds are really hitting Fort Myers. You can see Harriet’s feathers blowing.

It is a beautiful day over in Decorah, Iowa with the Decorah Bald Eagles. No eggs – it is winter! But the Eagles are around. The nest is at a trout hatchery – lucky raptors. Smiling. Everyone should have a source of fish for their Ospreys and their Raptors. Takes about 350-400 a season. Not bad for giving life to these beautiful birds and their family.

The Bald Eagles in Iowa generally lay their eggs in mid-February.

The Decorah Eagles are not to be confused with the Decorah North Eagles!!!!! It is home to Mr and Mrs North.

The camera is live at Duke Farms in New Jersey. No eggs yet. In fact, it should be about a month until we see eggs on this nest. I hope this Mum has better weather this year! She was encased in ice and snow most of incubation in early 2021.

Diamond is starting the day in the scrape box at Charles Sturt University in Orange. Both her and Xavier have been examining the new gravel that Cilla Kinross provided awhile ago. They have also had bad weather with torrential rains but it looks like they will have a nice day today. Fingers crossed.

Jackie and Shadow at Big Bear Bald Eagle Nest in Big Bear, California are doing nestorations. It looks like they are going to have a white Christmas.

Last year Bonnie and Clyde, the Great Horned Owls, took over a young Bald Eagles couple’s nest on Farmer Derek’s property. They raised two owlets. The nest is currently unoccupied but one of the Bald Eagles did a fly by at 07:19 this morning. Will there be a battle over this nest?

The eagle is right at the horizon line with the blue sky. You should be able to see it.

Anna has taken over incubation duties of the two eggs on the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest. This is her and Louis’s second breeding attempt. They fledged Kisatchie last season.

Clive is on incubation duty at the Captiva Bald Eagle nest. Another storm is really starting to churn in that area. It will effect the eagles as well as the ospreys – and, of course, it is the same storm that is hitting Harriet and M15 in Fort Myers.

It is a beautiful winter’s day – perfect for the Winter Solstice – at Glacier Gardens. I wonder what Kindness is doing? She was such a special juvie.

Alaska is a perfect place for Bald Eagles, too. When Dave Hancock put the satellite trackers on the 7 or 8 fledglings in British Columbia that survived that horrific heat wave, all of them flew north to Alaska.

Lena is waiting for Andy to bring her some fish at the Captiva Osprey Nest. This couple was really hit hard – along with Connie and Clive at the Captiva Bald Eagle nest – from the storms the other day. It is good to see that all had no problems. There is another storm brewing today.

Ervie got the morning fish and Bazza is not happy. Apparently, Ervie woke up in the middle of the night and kicked Bazza off the nest. I can understand why he is grumpy.

Ervie is doing a great mantling job. Third hatch turned out to be the ‘King Pin’. Wonder if Bazza remembers how he tried to treat Ervie? Do raptors have a memory like elephants?

Daisy is fine. Wishing for a quiet day for her.

This is a wee bit of a catch up with some of our other favourite nests. Cal Falcons raised $3500 through the sale of t-shirts to support Lindsay Wildlife for treating Grinnell. That is fantastic! There is no news of who Annie will pair with for the 2022 breeding season. Watching birds is all about patience. Sometimes I don’t have any!!!!!!

Thank you so much for stopping in to check on the nests. The birds will weather the current storms in Florida. They are used to them but, still, we worry. Wishing all of you a very happy Winter solstice. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: NEFlorida Bald Eagle and the AEF, SWFlorida and the Pritchett Family, Captiva Osprey, Captiva Bald Eagle, KNF Bald Eagles, Glacier Gardens, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, Farmer Derek, Friends of Big Bear Eagles, Duke Farms, the Raptor Research Project at Explore.org, and the Port Lincoln Ospreys.

From Port Lincoln to Kauai to Juneau

Oh, gosh. We really are going to miss these three boys when they finally leave the Port Lincoln barge. Ervie was wet this morning. He has been focusing very hard on finding a fish and catching it. We might never know, sadly, when that moment occurs – unless he brings it up to the ropes like Dad. Wouldn’t that be wonderful?!

Bazza seems to have landed the first fish this morning on the nest. Falky doesn’t seem bothered and Ervie had flown off earlier.

Port Lincoln gave us a nice image of Bazza over on the ropes. These three males are quite handsome.

When Ervie flew back to the barge he was really keen on preening those feathers.

You can really see that sharply hooked beak that helps to tear the fish so they are easier to eat. Unlike Peregrine falcons, Ospreys do not have a tomial tooth. In my images it is a bit difficult to see that valve which seals the Osprey’s nostrils when they dive for their fish but, it is there.

Looking at that beautiful image of Ervie below you will notice that the Ospreys lack that very heavy eyebrow of some of the other raptors. Instead, they have that incredible black line which passes from the eye down to the neck. That black line helps them with the glare.

Ervie missed the the 8:14:14 fish that Dad brought in. Falky claimed in.

Port Lincoln has reported that Ervie has been flying farther. They also note that he has been checking out the coast. Here is the latest map of Ervie’s movements from the barge.

Ervie and his siblings will get their adult plumage at their first moult which is fully completed by the time they are a year old. That change in plumage does not indicate Ervie’s sexual maturity. Osprey do not normally breed until they are three years of age. The 2019 fledgling from Port Lincoln, Calypso, has been spotted sitting on a branch with a male. Might there be chicks next year? That would be marvellous!

When Penny Olsen’s book on the raptors of Australia was published in 1995, the map of Australia indicated that the Eastern Ospreys were located only around the coast. Ironically, that map did not indicate any ospreys in the Eyre Peninsula. This is one of the things that has changed since its publication. We have to look no further than the Port Lincoln Opsrey Barge and Thistle Island. We also know from Solly being the first tracked Osprey that the birds do go inland. Not all that far but further inland than anyone had understood previously. We are fortunate that Solly was able to provide so much information to us in the 14 months that she was alive. Port Lincoln can now compare the dispersal of a female to that of a male with the tracking of Ervie.

There are many threats to Osprey. I imagine that everyone reading my blog can name at least four. I want to add warming seas and the decline in fish numbers as yet another.

As you know, I highly recommend Dr Marc Bekoff’s book, The Emotional Lives of Animals. He also wrote The Ten Truths with Jane Goodall. A very moving story is coming from the island of Kauai, Hawaii. Some of you might recognize the name of Hob Osterlund. She posted a very moving story that can be added to the cornucopia of evidence that Bekoff and Goodall have that support animals having emotions which they express. Once you have read those two reasonably priced books, you will never ever apologize again for anthropomorphizing animals again.

Here is that posting:

Tears.

One of my readers ‘B’ asked me if I had seen the snow at Glacier Gardens. I had not! So I went to check. Oh, my goodness, it is so beautiful. If you close your eyes you can see that beautiful Kindness using that nest and those branches like a trampoline. What a magnificent juvie Kindness was. She is off eating Salmon along the river.

On Taiaroa Head, 122 birds have been seen so far and there are 36 eggs laid. No mention yet on who the Royal cam stars for 2021-22 will be! Soon. And there has been no update on Grinnell. No further updates on WBSE 27 either.

Thank you so much for joining me today. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Glacier Gardens Bald Eagle Cam, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, and to Hob Osterlund and her FB page for that moving story. Much appreciated.

Oh, Tiny Little…and other tales

More rain has come to the Canadian prairies and that is good. There are wonderful things happening at the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, too.

Earlier today 462 was eating on the flounder that came in. Tiny Little wants some and she is doing her usual wing flaps and playing with sticks, even pulling on the tail of the live fish to get at it. What a character. The two older siblings have become very tolerant of the ‘little one’ that isn’t so little!

It is Tiny’s usual look towards the tail before getting back there and pulling on it. Gosh, these birds are gorgeous.

Tiny Little has been moving sticks getting back by the tail and pretending to give it an accidental yank once in awhile. Too funny.

Tiny Little takes over from 462 eating the fish. 462 flies off the nest and 464 is quietly waits in the wings.

Tiny Little is really doing a great job of that self-feeding. She has been working on that flounder for quite awhile.

White YW flies in and delivers another flounder to 464 who begins mantling and telling the parent how happy they are.

Of course, 462 sees all the action on the nest and decides to come and check it out. They don’t want to miss anything — especially a parent on the nest to feed them. Yes, even the older ones love to still be fed by mum. But mum is not doing it. This is tough love Osprey style.

Tiny Little will not be distracted! And 464 is holding on to its flounder as best it can. Gosh those heads are hard to open. Wonder if 462 will get this one later?

These kiddos are pretty polite. I am glad that White 35 has stopped rushing in to feed Tiny Little. That might sound cruel but TL needs to become really good at self-feeding to survive. These are terrific parents. 462 has eaten earlier and both TL and 464 along with 462 will have nice full tummies for nite-nite.

Earlier Tiny Little did some great hovering.

After Tiny Little finished all of the flounder she could eat, White 35 flew in quickly and took it to the parent tree. Those adults have to be watching everything these kids do – like a hawk! The removal of the fish inspired Tiny Little to do more great hovering. I thought she was gone! If not, tomorrow. Tiny Little is now inspired to self-feed and fly. The confidence is really growing.

Tiny Little also seemed to enjoy the hovering and looking down – the fear from earlier days seems to have dissipated.

I just checked and 464 is still working on its flounder. Tiny Little is staring 464 down and 462 is simply waiting. These three are so funny. Did I tell you that 462 actually fed Tiny Little some bites earlier she begged so much!? And if I told you twice, laugh twice. That is just a hoot.

No one is rushing 464 anymore. Tiny Little and 462 have decided to become ducklings and wait!

There is a lot of worry about the Collins Marsh Reservoir Osprey Nest in Wisconsin. It is hot there. They are now experiencing some of that relentless heat that hit the Pacific NW a couple of weeks ago and the Canadian Prairies last week. It is close to 45 degrees in the nest. That could easily account for the deaths of the other two chicks. The little one was fed at sometime. I rewound the tape. I could not see the mother protecting that chick from the sun. I really hope that this is not another Electra-Wattsworth scenario! There are some Osprey parents that are ‘the greats’ – Monty and his mates Nora and Glesni, Blue 33 and Maya are up in the super strata. There are others who are normal average and some who, are not good parents. Maybe they came from a nest where food was not brought in regularly. Who knows what is the difference. Some of us believe it is good DNA. The Cowlitz nest is an example of a nest that is not that good. If taking care of your family and fledging chicks who survive migration and return to breed is the measure, Cowlitz fails. Sadly, we cannot expect every nest to be like that of Blue 33 at Rutland. Maya and Blue even fledged a nest of four chicks in 2018. Some of the others can hardly keep up with two. Still. we all want to help if we can.

There have been any number of questions about intervention to save the chick at Collins Marsh. At the present time the archaic laws of the US – those of 1948 – do not allow for interventions unless it is something clearly caused by humans. Think monofilament line in the nest. That said I will go over some interventions this year. In the early spring, the two eaglets of E17 and E18 on Harriet and M15s Bald Eagle Nest got conjunctivitis. There were probably more than a 1000 people who called in about the eaglets and their eyes. Action was taken. CROW retrieved the eaglets with the help of Joshua Tree and they were off the nest for 5 days. They returned well. Conjunctivitis is not caused by humans. At the Captiva Bald Eagle Nest, CROW removed a monofilament line. However, when the two eaglets ate a rat that was brought to the nest that had eaten rodenticide, the youngest died and the oldest lived until they were flapping and jumping and broke a blood feather and bled out on the nest. Help did not come for the eaglets when the first one looked ill. Citizen watchers warned of the rat on the nest but there was nothing happened. It was extremely frustrating. Both of the eaglets died. This was not the fault of CROW. You need action by the bodies that govern the nests. Lately a number of chicks have gone to foster parents which is also an intervention. A chick was rescued that fell into a river. That is an intervention. Laws are applied differently by different people. The laws need to be changed and brought up to date. There should also be laws against lead in hunting and fishing equipment and Minnesota is taking that on. Every state should ban the use of these because that lead is killing the birds or making them severely ill. Every day there are examples on the rehabbers sites. Hawaii just passed a law banning helium balloons because the albatross get entangled in them. Then there is the entire issue of rodenticide – which kills wildlife as well as domestic pets. Research shows that raptors kill more mice and rats than poison. Perhaps the answer is to begin at the State level with copies of appeal letters to the Under Secretary of State for the Department of the Interior.

I checked on Kindness and her dad had fed her and within fifteen minutes he was flying back in with more food for his little girl. It might seem lonely but there are benefits to being an only child on a great nest. Freedom and Liberty are fantastic parents at the Glacier Gardens nest. It is a wonder Kindness did not pop her crop today.

I have really watched Tiny Little closely today and just popped in to the other nests. The only other news I have is that the Albatross is still at the RSPB Bempton Cliffs in the East Riding of Yorkshire as reported by Sally White on the FB page. Maybe that Albatross isn’t lost. Perhaps they know something we don’t!

Thank you so much for joining me. Great progress has been made at the Foulshaw Moss. It is wonderful to see Tiny Little getting some confidence. Our rain has stopped but everything is green! It’s a good day. Take care all.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Collins Marsh Reservoir and Neustadter Nature Center, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and Foulshaw Moss Osprey Cam, and Glaciers Gardens Bald Eagle cam.

Late Saturday and early Sunday 17-18 July in Bird World

If you have watched Kindness, the Bald Eagle nestling at Glacier Gardens, then you might have caught her nipping at her mum’s beak. It looks like she is trying to kiss mum. A couple of days ago a video was made showing Kindness interacting with her mum. My goodness, Kindness, you are lucky your mum is so patient! Have a look.

At the Port Lincoln Osprey barge, it looks like the final touches have gone on the nest renovations. The egg cup is now lined with very soft pieces of bark. Mom decides to try it out!

Dad flies in with something else on his mind! No eggs yet but mating is taking place. Season will begin soon!

As we approach fledging at all of the Northern Hemisphere Osprey nests and migration in a month to six weeks, if you fear Osprey withdrawal, here is the link to this nest. Just a warning. This nest has had instances of siblicide in the past.

The Port Lincoln’s eldest chick from the 2020 season, a female named Solly, was fitted with a satellite tracker. Solly is 301 days old and she is still hanging out at Eba Anchorage and Kiffin Island. It sure seems that Solly has found her forever home at Eba Anchorage. For those of you unfamiliar, the movements of Solly changed what everyone understood about Ospreys in Australia. It was believed that ospreys stayed near to where their natal nest was located. Solly travelled over 200 km to Eba Anchorage and Perlubie giving the researchers fresh insights to the behaviour of these ospreys.

To my knowledge there has been no sighting of DEW, her younger brother. He did not receive a tracker but he did get a metal ring and a Darvic colour band.

Suzanne Arnold Horning was on the Cornell Campus again this evening. How lucky she was to get some great images of Big Red with a squirrel down on the ground – and it wasn’t raining. (Send the rain to the Canadian Prairies when you get tired of it, Suzanne!).

It was wonderful to see Big Red with prey that she was going to eat herself. She needs to build up her strength after laying eggs, incubating those eggs, and feeding and caring for the three Ks until fledge. Even now she is doing some prey drops and is busy training the Ks to hunt.

Big Red with Squirrel. @ Suzanne Arnold Horning

The Robins were giving Big Red a lot of grief. Could it be because Arthur has been up at their nest eating their babies? Or the fact that K1 caught a bird today and it was rumoured to be a young Robin?

Robins being rather assertive around Big Red. @ Suzanne Arnold Horning

Big Red and her squirrel also attracted another visitor – a Turkey Vulture!

Would you mind sharing asks the Turkey Vulture. @ Suzanne Arnold Horning

The pair also attracted a human who was said to have tried to interfere with the situation. Both of the birds were fine. Big Red was eating and the Turkey Vulture appeared to be waiting to see if she left anything.

One of the things that I have learned is that hunting is difficult and prey is not abundant always. Raptors can wait for hours, half a day, or even a day to catch prey to eat. It is estimated that only 1 out of 3 juveniles live to the age of two years – mostly due to starvation. Humans should not interfere when a raptor is eating. As a result of the human intrusion, Big Red chose to fly away from the human who was interfering. This also caused her to leave part of her meal. The vulture did eat the rest – so in the end everyone ate- but it was a situation that should never have happened. Remember if you see a hawk hunting or eating, please leave them alone. Finding their meal is not that easy.

Turkey Vulture at Cornell. @Suzanne Arnold Horning

The scientific name for the Turkey Vulture – Carthartes Aura – means ‘cleansing breeze’. They are scavengers, eating mainly carrion. They have dark espresso coloured feathers, red legs and head, with a white beak. Like the condor, there are no feathers on their head. This is a great evolutionary trait so that pieces of the dead do not stick to them causing disease or parasites. The Turkey Vulture’s sense of smell is so great that they can find a fresh killed animal a mile away! The only raptors larger than the Turkey Vultures are the Eagles and the Condors. What I find interesting is that they are the only raptor that cannot kill their own prey. They simply do not have the right talons to do this – their feet are more like that of a chicken. That said they can tear through really tough hides with their beak. In other words, the Turkey Vulture was never a threat to Big Red.

As I prepare to settle in for the night, Tiny Little is waking up. The early morning fog over the marsh is just starting to clear. You can see the parents, or siblings, or both back on the parent tree. Tiny Little is still sleeping like a duckling on the nest. Good Morning Tiny Little! Let’s get that gear box into forward today.

Tiny Little is also checking the nest for any little tidbits of leftover fish. And just like Tiny Tot he has found some lurking under those sticks.

Tiny Little was doing some prey calling and looking up in the sky. The morning fog doesn’t seem to be clearing. What a beautiful colour it is – that sort of golden pink gradually fading into the grey-blue-green. Lovely.

Update: Tiny Little had a huge breakfast. It is now mid-afternoon and Blue 462 is working on a fish that arrived. 464 is standing next to that fish and Tiny Little, 463, is ignoring it right now. She is probably still full enough from the morning not to bother. Unclear if Tiny Little has taken a second flight today. I stayed up waiting! But had to give in to being tired.

This is the image of the afternoon line up for a fish! 462 is eating, 464 is pretending to be Tiny Little and bugging his big sibling. Tiny Little is over at the side duckling style. Tiny Little is full from breakfast and knows that Mum will come to the rescue later if she gets hungry.

There is a beautiful peachy almost coral sky as the morning begins at the Poole Harbour Osprey nest. CJ7 and Blue 022 are roosting elsewhere.

Golden diamonds are falling on the nest of Blue 33 and Maya at Rutland Manton Bay. No one is home. They are all perched elsewhere. Blue 33 does make food drops at the nest for the two Bobs.

A little later, Blue 095 flies into the nest and settles down and then flies out again.

Blue 095

Oh, wow. Just look at that sun coming up over the Dyfi nest of Idris and Telyn in Wales. It is so bright you cannot see the perch!

A very short video of Ystwyth fledging at 7:59 am on 17 July is here:

It is serene up at The Loch of the Lowes. No one is home but it sounds like there is a fledgling on the camera perch.

What you don’t see here is that later, NC0 is on the nest, spots a fish, goes out and gets it, and gives it to LM2.

Early Morning at Loch of the Lowes. 18 July 2021

The only thing you can hear at Glaslyn are either bees or wasps on the microphone! Oh, it is so beautiful and green. It has been hot at this nest, 26-29 degrees C – and the birds are staying cool in the shade of the trees. Even with the heat the landscape looks so lush. What a gorgeous way to begin the day.

Early morning at Glaslyn. 18 July 2021

Thank you so much for joining me today. I so enjoy hearing from all of you. Stay safe! See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Byrwd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dyfi Osprey Project, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Friends of the Loch of the Lowes, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, Poole Harbour Osprey Project, LRWT and the Manton Bay Ospreys. I would also like to thank the Port Lincoln Osprey Research Project and the PLO FB page where I took a screen shot of Solly’s recent tracking. And last but never least, I would like to say a huge thank you to Suzanne Arnold Horning for allowing me to use her images on my blog. She holds the copyright on them so please do not use elsewhere. Thank you.

Bird Tales

Wow. I just want to sit and watch this short video over and over again. If you know someone who tells you that Ospreys are not intelligent and cannot problem solve, please show them this video of an Osprey nest in Vaasa, Finland:

https://fb.watch/6Da1-VNcEo/

I am going to recommend a lovely little book. It is called Hawk Mother. The Story of a Red-tailed Hawk Who Hatched Chickens by Kara Hagedorn.

The book has won outstanding awards for science for youngsters; I would say ages eight to twelve, elementary to the lowest level of middle school. My copy arrived in the post this morning. It is the true story of a Red-tail Hawk that was shot, would never fly, and was adopted by a zoologist that worked with the Cornell Lab. You can read more about their journey together on the website for Sunshine – that is the name of the Red tail hawk. That address is http://www.sunshinehawk.com Have a look.

You can purchase the book directly from Kara Hagedorn, the author and carer of Sunshine. It is also available through other on line outlets. It would be great for teachers or family who want to get children interested in birds. The images are photographs that Kara Hagedorn took of Sunshine. It is inspirational. Have a look and if you like the book and feel so inclined, recommend it to your local library. Hagedorn uses the proceeds to pay for the care of Sunshine.

Speaking of the adoption of Red-tail Hawks, I will mention again a book for adults, A Wing in the Door. Life with a Red-tailed Hawk. It is by Canadian Peri Phillips McQuay who took on the care of and rewilding of a hawk. Well written with great anecdotal stories. Find a used copy – your pocketbook will thank you. I ordered mine from amazon but went to the options so that I could get a used copy. I have no idea why the new price is so astronomical – avoid it at all costs!

And, of course, the best way to save money and space is to order through your local library. Ours will bring in books if they do not normally have them in stock.

When you finish reading the book, you will want to find out what happened to Merak. Go to Peri Phillips McQuay website and she will tell you!

I promised that I would post Ferris Akel’s Tour from Saturday, 3 July, once it was processed by YouTube and here it is. This is a full day tour that has been edited down to approximately 3 hours and 25 minutes. The Red-tail hawks on the Cornell Campus start 1:38:35 if you want to skip ahead. It starts with Big Red on the lights. There are some incredibly cute clips of the Ks preening and kissing one another!

There is not a lot going on in Bird World today. And that is a good thing. There was way too much drama when we had the storms and the extreme heat last weekend.

They continue to band ospreys in the UK – working flat out before they get too old and near fledge. Indeed, fledge watch is on for the Dyfi Nest of Idris and Telyn. Dysynnis, the male, is 49 days old today. Ystwyth is 45 days old. The chart for fledge times was also posted for that nest. Here is that information:

I love data. Just look at all that wonderful information! How many of us have been frustrated to go to a nest and not even have a history! Personally, if there is to be a streaming cam someone should take the responsibility of keeping accurate records and post them in the information section below so subscribers can see it. It would also help to have knowledgable moderators. Moderators are volunteers – they are not paid. They give up their time – a lot of it -to help us learn more about the birds. Histories and moderators would help citizen birders gain knowledge.

Nestlings such as the Two Bobs on Loch of the Lowes are just itching to fly so we are going to see some more fledging this week. They still love to have NC0 feeding them, though. Two big babies – look at the size of them – at the Loch of the Lowes! Laddie and NC0 did a fantastic job raising these two this year.

Others, such as the Two Bobs on the Manton Bay Nest, have fledged and are honing those wings while returning to the nest to eat. Blue 096, the female, has returned for a nice piece of fish this evening.

My goodness. Both of the parents at the Glacier Garden’s Bald Eagle Nest in Juneau, Alaska love to feed Kindness. I counted nothing short of six feedings yesterday!

When Kindness is finished eating, she looks like she is going to try out for The Hulk role in a new movie. It is a good things crops stretch! She is just now learning to stand and making attempts at walking. It is so sweet to watch her.

That is it for today. Thank you so much for joining me. Take care and let’s all hope that the nests just remain calm.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I grabbed my screen shots: Scottish Wildlife Trust and Friends of Loch of the Lowes, Glacier Gardens Bald Eagle Cam, LRWT and the Manton Bay Osprey Nest.

Continuing to Track Elsa -and other news in Bird World, Sunday 4 July

Everyone that watches the Achieva Osprey Nest in St Petersburg, Florida is following the tracking of Tropical Storm Elsa. The latest weather news is that Elsa will remain a Tropical Storm bringing heavy rain, thunderstorms and tornadoes, and some wind to Florida. The current tracking has Elsa interacting with Jamaica and that is slowing her down. She will speed up a bit as she hits the warm waters in the Gulf of Mexico. Elsa is not expected to intensify to hurricane status.

The good news for Tiny Tot and the Achieva Nest is that the current model shows the intensity off the west coast of Florida (but it could shift). Elsa will be trying to make landfall North of Tampa early Wednesday morning. I pulled the following model shots off of the weather broadcast in the area. The white thicker arc line on the left is the current believed path that Elsa will take. That could shift, however, and be anywhere in the area between it and the darker blue arch line.

This is Elsa at 11 am EDT. You can see the strongest area is right over Kingston, Jamaica.

I will continue to follow Elsa and report as we get closer to the beginning of the week with more certainty as to how the storm will impact St. Petersburg.

The last time I checked on Tiny Tot was 1:54 nest time and she was there fish begging hoping Jack would hear her and bring some lunch in. I do not believe Tiny Tot has had any fish yet today. She had a nice fish at 6:47 last night.

I checked on the Fortis Exshaw Osprey Nest in Canmore, Alberta. There was a fish delivery at 9:30 this morning and both of the surviving chicks were eating. Last night one of them had an enormous crop. So this nest is bucking the trend and has 2 survivors and 1 dead from the heat. Indeed, last night I thought we might have lost 2 but this morning there were two little heads eating.

The top image is last evening. You can see that huge crop on the little one.

This was right after the fish delivery on Sunday morning around 9:30.

There were two heads clearly seen in the image below. Well done Exshaw!

Kindness just gets cuter every day. This is Sunday morning in the Glacier Gardens Bald Eagle Nest in Juneau, Alaska. Talk about one very much loved eaglet. Her parents Freedom and Liberty really take good care of her.

It looks like it is the end of the season at the Newfoundland Power Osprey Nest, sadly. We know that the oldest chick got on top of the little one hatching. Mom tried to pull the bigger one off by its legs and both died. There was one remaining egg. That egg now seems to be broken and abandoned. If I am reading this wrong, please let me know.

Tiny Little Bob continues to rebuild the Foulshaw Moss Nest. It is interesting that he is also finding pieces of dry fish there that must be yummy. Tiny Little isn’t sharing with Big Sister when he does find a piece!

It is still wet up at the Loch of the Lowes. Laddie delivered an evening fish and got out of that nest fast! There was quite the scramble. NC0 will try and feed the Bobs so everyone gets something. Sadly, it was a bit of a twiddler that was delivered so it won’t go far.

News out of Australia. Mom and Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge have been mating and Mom is feverishly working on nest restorations. Mom is watching dad eating a fish not far away and wondering why he isn’t sharing and hasn’t been helping her! With all the twigs in and now the soft lining…it won’t be long!

Last year’s first hatch, Solly, returned to Streaky Bay and then went right back to Eba Anchorage. It appears that this might be where Solly is making her permanent home. Thanks to the satellite tracker her every move is monitored! Solly is doing well. That is excellent news.

News coming out of New Brunswick, Canada. A rare Stellar’s Sea Eagle – not seen in Canada – but in Russia – is in Canada on the Restigouche River! Have a read:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/stellers-eagle-new-brunswick-bird-1.6086439?fbclid=IwAR0AlwJvLZcMP4kaHkwTWzVPN6CWSIcngRufRVWPF3DZoi1Jwb63y3z6KFQ

And while I would like to leave us on a happy note, another Osprey was found entangled in monofilament fishing line in an Osprey Nest in Alberta and had to be detangled. Please, please, if you fish be responsible. Don’t fish where you know your line is going to get caught up and broken in underwater tree trunks leaving line and hook to harm the wildlife. Thank you.

Thank you for joining me today. Take care all. For those of you celebrating 4 July – have a happy one.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I grabbed my screen shots: Achieva Credit Union, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Friends of Loch of the Lowes, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Cam, Newfoundland Power Corporation, Fortis Alberta, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Port Lincoln FB Page, Glacier Gardens Bald Eagle Cam, and Channel Two Weather News.

Some good – and some worrying – news in Bird World

After the extreme heat and the death of the second and last chick on the Cowlitz Osprey Nest due to heat stroke, we all need some good news to come out of Bird World and we have it! Thank goodness.

The fantastic news comes from the Glaslyn Osprey Nest in Wales. In early June, in the midst of storms that had force 11 winds in the area, Aran, the mate of Mrs G, the oldest osprey in the UK, injured himself. The damage was to his primary wing feathers and was caused by battling intruders. That incident meant that Aran could not provide fish for Mrs G and the three chicks and, subsequently, those three chicks died of starvation despite the community gathering to bring in fish for the family on a feeding table. The fish donated by the community enabled Mrs G and Aran to heal. Still, everyone worried that Aran would not be sufficiently fit and healed for the late summer migration.

The couple are being monitored closely by the staff and volunteers. Today, at &:35 am, Aran brought Mrs G a fish! Now that might not sound like much of ‘anything’ but this is a really big deal. It is the first time that Aran has provided Mrs G with a fish since his wing injury occurred. It is also a significant step towards Aran’s complete recovery. There were tears in Wales but – they were tears of joy!

Here is that historic moment:

Mrs G is delighted and quickly accepts Aran’s gift. It isn’t just the food or Aran’s healing, it is also the bonding of the couple.

Now only was she delighted, but Mrs G was waiting at the nest until late still hoping that Aran would bring her another! Just lovely.

The camera is so hazy but I can tell you that Jack has been bringing in fish for Tiny Tot today. So everything is OK on the Achieva Osprey Nest.

Cute little K3 was over on the Cornell Red tail hawk nest had a prey drop.

K3’s self-feeding is getting much better and that is a good thing!

Don’t worry. A short time later K1 got some prey, too! Here she is eating as the rain begins to fall.

And it began to pour. It is 16:00 nest time and there are two very wet Ks. Both have eaten and really, everything is right in the world. Both are safe and sound sitting out the rain.

Sadly, Electra has returned to the nest where the bodies of her two chicks are. She has brought the same piece of fish she had last night – or that is what it looks like. Is she driven to want to feed the little one? Is it those same hormones that keep her tied to the idea that the male brings the fish keeping her here in her duties as mother to feed? I think she understood the death of the first chick. But, last evening she went out to get fish to feed her seemingly well chick that had a crop from an earlier feed. She returns and that chick is dead. How could she process that it was the heat that killed her baby?

Electra is panting and it has to be over 100 degrees up on that nest. Let us all hope that she leaves the nest and goes down to cool off in the water. I cannot tell from the camera angle if Electra has a crop of if her chest is extended from the heavy panting she is having to do. I am worried about her if that is the same fish. It would have been hot last night on the nest when she returned after 9pm. She stood looking out in the distance keeping the fish in her talons for some seven hours. She did not eat anything. If she has not eaten today yet – and it is around 1pm nest time – I wonder what kind of physical (and mental) state Electra is in. It has been a very traumatic year for this nest and the heat is not going to help. Electra has to be exhausted. ——— I recall being in India when it was 46 C. If humans do not stay hydrated they can become disoriented and confused also. Is this happening to Electra?

I just went to check on Electra again. It is now approximately 13:40 nest time. Her condition appears to be worsening. Her eyes do not look right and she is panting heavily. This poor mother. Will the heat get to her before her own survivor instincts kick in? or is she already damaged from the heat yesterday that she is simply not responding appropriately.

We know that Mrs G and Aran lost all three of their beautiful chicks. Mrs G processed that. She had rain and cold to deal with but what is this heat doing to this fish eagle?

UPDATE: 2:22 Cowlitz Nest Time. Electra has flown off the nest with the fish. I do not believe it is the same fish from yesterday or it was the tail section. I hope the large crop is from eating the other fish. Electra needs to heal. However, the important news is that Electra is no longer in the heat of the nest. Will keep you posted.

Because of the heat I went up to Juneau Alaska to check on Kindness on the Bald Eagle Nest in the Glacier Gardens. Everything is fine there. It has been hot and the eagles have been doing a lot of panting along with Kindness but the fish deliveries are constant and consistent. They will be fine.

This morning I was looking at the drying up of water and it sent me to check on Iris. Sometimes Iris, actually quite often, is on her nest. She is constantly doing nestorations and this year she has had a lot of intruders. Today was no exception. An intruder came to the nest about 11:35:31 this morning.

Note to everyone: Look at the beautiful nest that Iris has been constructing even after her eggs were taken by the Raven. She has brought in soft moss and built up the sides. I really do wonder if the state of the nest says something about the mental state of the Osprey mother??? I know it sounds out of left field but I always wondered about Electra and the state of the nest at Cowlitz. Birds have memories. Iris certainly has memories of lost chicks and hope. Raises so many questions! But, nevermind, I am rambling off in another direction.

About 1.5 or 2 minutes later, Louis flies in to help Iris.

This is not the first time that Louis has heard Iris and come to assist her with intruders. While he might not be a good mate to Iris and I have called him lots of names, he has shown himself in the last month to be willing to come and protect that nest. Is he protecting Iris? or is it the nest in his territory?

There he is below, facing towards the front. Iris is at the back. her wings still in the mantling/alerting position. For now, things have calmed down.

I am not sure how the heat is impacting the Bald Eagle and Osprey Nests in British Columbia. They are being impacted by it also. Will try and see if I can find out some news.

Thank you for joining me. It is wonderful to see Aran’s improvement! That should give us all a bit of a glow. Send all your warm wishes to Electra. She is confused and the heat is not helping her. Hopefully she will go and get in the shade and have a bath in the water to cool down. Sadly, no humans will go up and help her even if they understand that the extreme climate change has been caused by us. It is beyond sad.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Glacier Gardens Bald Eagles, Cowlitz PUD, Achieva Credit Union, Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, Cornell Bird Lab and Montana Ospreys, and Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife.