Fish and more fish…Ernie sighting and Middle could pop his crop!

24 October 2022

It is just past 2300 on the Canadian Prairies on Sunday evening the 23rd of October. Within the hour we are supposed to have the beginning of thunderstorms that are forecast to last through all of Monday. We could use the moisture. It is always good when the trees and shrubs get a really good soaking before the ground freezes.

And we did. The thunder boomed throughout the nite and everything is soaked this morning. The wind is gusting and there are few birds at the feeders. The only ones that appear to be nonplussed by it are the Blue Jays. What a change from yesterday when the sparrows and finches were splashing about in the bird bath. Today they are hiding at their roost.

It is always great to get a picture of Ernie, everyone’s favourite Port Lincoln Osprey. This image was taken by Pam Hewstone and posted on Fiends of Osprey FB page. His tracking indicates that Ernie continues to hang around the Main Wharf and the ‘silos’. This image was taken at Delamare Beach where Ernie and Dad like to fish together. Oh, he looks so good. Can’t see how that talon is growing back in but, it looks like Ernie is having no problem catching good sized fish. He already has a nice-sized crop.

Friends of Ospreys have been erecting Osprey platforms. You might recall they put in place one on Turnby Island for the bonded couple whose eggs were always predated when they laid them on the ground. Sadly, the two eggs the couple laid this year are now 45 and 46 days old and deemed unviable.

Monday was a really good day at Port Lincoln. What a joy to watch Middle be able to enjoy a meal without once being beaked by Big. Ironically, if you just started to watch this Osprey nest and knew nothing of the background and what happened a little over a week ago, you will talk about how calming it is to watch the ospreys fed by Mum. Big is 36 days old and Middle is now 35 days old.

So far there have been three feedings on Monday at Port Lincoln. There will be more at all of the nests as Canada slips into evening and darkness.

They came at 06:57:57. That was a flat striped fish. The second fish was at 0908. Middle Bob got the lion’s share of that fish and waddled away with a big crop. The third fish landed on the nest at 13:07:52. It was a huge fish. Mum and the two ospreys are going to eat well. So far Middle is doing well and the last I checked he was already getting a nice crop. Just brilliant.

Middle is the chick closest to the viewer. Notice that nice crop. Just look at how much of that fish is left. Everyone is going to have a good feed — including Mum! Thank goodness.

Seriously. Did you think you would ever see Middle with a crop like the one he has on display?? And just look at Mum. The two ospreys full and she is finally getting to enjoy a fish lunch, too.

For two days now this nest has been calm. It took Big 33 days, not 28-30 to settle but, in the end, she did. Grateful.

Middle and Big are at the age that Mum can now roost over on the ropes if she wishes.

Middle and Big do a lot of preening all day long keeping those feathers that are coming in good shape. Oh, didn’t you love it when they left that Reptilian stage and got this gorgeous plumage that is coming in. ‘R’ and I decided awhile ago that the juvenile Osprey plumage is much prettier than the adults.

Rubus and Indigo have had their second feeding. Xavier flew in with what looked like a Rainbow Lorikeet to me – and I will happily change that. It is the closest I could come to identifying that multi-coloured prey item that Xavier brought to the scrape at 092921. Oh, Rubus was ravenous. I have no idea where this eyas puts all of this prey but this wee one sure has an appetite! Xavier does a great job feeding his babies. Diamond doesn’t arrive for 12 minutes- the feeding is almost over. Xavier fed both Rubus and Indigo nice big bites.

A nice big pigeon arrived at 11:40 – all part of a crash landing by Dad (?) into the scrape box. Everyone had their fill and immediately starting working on those leg and wing muscles. ‘H’ notes that Dad fed them for 12 minutes while eating himself for about 25% of the time.

There was once again 5 feedings at the 367 Collins Street scrape yesterday. They came at 0634. That feeding lasted 18 minutes. A second feeding was at 1120 for 16 minutes then the 3rd hot on the heels of the second at 1140. Then there was a break with the 4th feeding at 1707. The Melbourne Four ate well. Then Mum came in with a pigeon at 1859 and looked around and only fed for about 1.5 minutes. ‘H’ thank you for the times and the notes. Mum and Dad need to coordinate their delivery times!!!!!!!!

It is now past midnight. The day is halfway over at our Australian nests. Everyone is doing fantastic. The Melbourne Four are growing faster than any good weed in your garden! Rubus continues to bug Indigo by following her everywhere. Such a sweet character. Most of all Middle is a confident Osprey. That nest is just so satisfying to watch now. I do hope that it continues. The banding of Big and Middle will take place in about 3 weeks.

In migration news, there are no new transmissions from Karl II and Kaia. Last time we heard from them Karl II was near Aswan in Egypt and Kaia was in Chad. I can also not find any new information on Bonus who has spent much time in Romania. The real news has come from little Waba who was in Turkey, flew near to Beirut and is now in Israel and has been feeding at some fishponds there.

While it is expected that there will be little transmissions coming from certain areas in Africa, I really do hope that we hear from Bonus soon.

The Bald Eagles are continuing to do their nest building. For those who watched Little Bit ND17 at the Bald Eagle nest in St Joseph’s Park in South Bend, Indiana, both Mum and Dad have been working on that nest. They are making slow progress. Harriet and M15 are doing a terrific job. Both couples lost their nests – Harriet and M15 in Hurricane Ian and the nest at Norte-Dame just fell apart. It is amazing what eagles can do in a short period of time. An adult has been on the perch at the Achieva Osprey nest in St Petersburg. I could not see its head to determine any markings. That nest is going to need a lot of work. In Redding, California, Liberty and Guardian are also working on their nest. Liberty has been using this nest for 18 breeding seasons. She has fledged 26 eaglets and has had 3 mates. Liberty is 24 years old and Guardian is 9 years old. Bald Eagle season is not far away!

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Osprey and Pam Hewstone, Port Lincoln Osprey, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Looduskalender, and Charles Stuart Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross.

3rd Hatch making good progress for Thunder and Akecheta!

12 March 2022

Akecheta looks down proudly at his two babies as the third is almost hatched at the West End Bald Eagle nest on Catalina Island.

Thunder and Akecheta may not have had any fledglings for 2020 and 2021 but, they will make up for it this year. The third egg has almost completely split the egg as I write this!

They are both going to be so busy. If you want to join in the fun, I will post the link to their streaming camera at the end.

Here are some captures at the West End nest today. Cheta looks like he is trying to figure a way to feed the chicks while brooding!!!

Isn’t that the cutest little fluff ball?

The two siblings together looking out as the youngest is trying hard to get that shell off!

Or is Cheta trying to feed himself and the babies!!!!!!! He sure loves being there when the little ones hatch. He assisted chick 2 by removing half of the shell. What a dad.


It is hot at the nest today. Cheta and chick 1 are panting.

Our gorgeous dad – hot but happy – waiting for his third baby ever to hatch!

It’s 12:11 and Thunder has come to the nest making the cutest little chirping sounds wanting a turn. I wonder if she knows how Cheta tried to feed them?!

It is not going to be long until the third chick is fully hatched. The crack around the middle of the egg looks like it might be complete.

Here is the link:

Awwww. It is so hot up on top of that rock on Catalina Island!

Thank you so much for joining me. It is eggciting and it will be fun to watch these two, Thunder and Akecheta, as they manage all those babies!!!!!

Thank you to the West End Eagles for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

Happiness Spilling over at the nest of Thunder and Akecheta

10 March 2022

There is something so joyful about a first time eagle parent and Akecheta sure gets the gold star for staying diligent and being ever so excited today. Akecheta wears a wing tag with the number A-61. He hatched at the Los Pinos nest on Santa Cruz Island in 2016 so he is six years old this year. He also has a silver band on his left leg with his numbers and an orange band on the right. His mate is Thunder and she wears the wing tag K-91. She hatched at the Two Harbours nest on Catalina Island in 2009. She is 13 years old this year. Akecheta has been Thunder’s mate since the 2020 breeding season. They had many problems including Akecheta, at the young age of four, not really realizing the importance of nest security. Eggs were lost to ravens – two clutches – in 2020 and in 2021 issues with eggs in nesting materials. This year is very different so far! In a good way. Akecheta is smitten with those babies and is being devoted to his family both in getting fish and in security. It is beautiful.

There were 3 eggs laid in the 2022 season on 29 Jan, 1 Feb and 5th February. The first two eggs have hatched on the 8th and 10th of March. Looking for the third to hatch on 12 March. Oh, goodness. What a difference in dates! Today the mods were happy to report that E2 had its beak wide open for food at 12:36:02 and that E1 had its first poop shot at 13:04:56. If you read about bonking on this chat, just smile. The nestlings’s vision and muscles are not developed. It is not intentional at this point.

Watching out for the Ravens that are flying around.


Such happiness – two fuzzy babies. Thunder is so happy!

An Eagle kiss between Thunder and Akecheta. Beautiful.

Akecheta is so excited and wants to do everything! Brooding, security, and fish deliveries!

Sweet little baby.

Yes, you are very cute. Look at that hairdo!

Proud Papa. Thunder can hardly get in any brooding time.

Why do some of the eagles have wing tags and not others? The ones with wing tags were part of an effort to reintroduce bald eagles into the region since they were wiped out by DDE prior to the 1980s. Here is a really thorough article on the hacking effort of reintroduction that both Thunder and Akecheta were part of:–t11469.html

Everyone is pretty much aware that there are at least 400,000 barrels of DDT that were dumped into the water around the islands. Some of these are leaking. It might turn out that the eagles and their chicks become part of an even greater study as to the continuing impact of this deadly chemical on their chicks and their future breeding.

Today, this family has just put a glow on my face today! I wanted to share that with you. Here is the link to their camera:

Thank you to and the Institute for Wildlife Studies for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

Adorable -Jackie and Shadow

Jackie and Shadow are the most adorable Bald eagle couple. For me, they rank right up there with Blue 33 and Maya, the Osprey adults at the Rutland Manton Bay nest.

If you do not know them, Jackie and Shadow have their nest high in the San Bernardino National Forest, west of Los Angeles. This nest has been actively used by Bald eagles since 2012. The first occupants were named Ricky and Lucy. It is believed that Jackie is their hatch from 2012 – indeed, the first Bald Eagle chick to hatch ever in Big Bear Valley. Jackie remained in the Big Bear Valley. At the time the lake froze over in the winter, so the eagles were only resident during the summer months for breeding.

In 2017, Jackie, took over the abandoned nest of Ricky and Lucy. Her mate at the time was Mr B. They mated but no eggs produced as Jackie would have just been turning 5. In 2018, Jackie successfully hatched 2 chicks, BBB and Stormy. The weather was cold when the chicks were too large to get under her for brooding. BBB died but Stormy survived. Stormy was banded. The band was purple with the code JR1. Stormy fledged on April 26, 2018 leaving the area.

A rather tenacious male intruder showed up at the nest of Jackie and Mr B before Stormy fledged. That male refused to leave. Onlookers at the time believe that this male is Shadow, another one of Ricky and Lucy’s fledglings. Mr B left and that male was Shadow. Is it Jackie’s sibling? The Friends of Big Bear believe this Shadow to be a year older because of its plumage than the Shadow that hatched in Big Bear would have had at the time. Without tags or DNA tests (if samples were available), it will not ever be known for sure if the couple are or are not siblings.

The following year, 2019, Jackie’s two eggs hatched. The chicks were called Simba and Cookie. Cookie died during a rain and snowstorm. Simba was banded ZJ1. Both chicks were males. Simba fledged on 23 July. He was last seen in the area on 18 August, 2019.

In 2020, Jackie and Shadow’s eggs failed to hatch. They incubated them for more than 60 days. The eggs were eaten by Ravens with onlookers not seeing any chick development inside.

Sadly, in 2021, Jackie and Shadow laid two clutches. None of the eggs survived to hatch.

This year the couple have laid two eggs and have been very conscientious about incubation and security. The world watches with them, 6789 persons at last count on line, hoping for two miracles.

Jackie gets up to inspect the egg and listen to the chick.

Shadow joins her to share in this precious moment.

Incredibly touching. I am sure that both of them marvel at the thought that just maybe this baby will survive.

The pip is much larger.

It is so hoped that this wee one will have the energy to get through that shell and hatch. Send warm wishes to this couple who literally deserve ‘a break’ – a big one in that shell right now so that baby can get out. I hope that the weather stays warmer and none of the chicks experience the cold rain and snow that has plagued this nest high in the mountains.

Thank you to the Friends of Big Bear Valley and their streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

Early Friday in Bird World


For more than two years, the birds that we adore have given us solace and brought joy when there was no joy to be found. Like today. I hope that we can, one person and one step at a time, make the environment better for them so that they thrive. Their gifts to us cannot be measured.

I wrote and thanked ‘B’ last night for sending me a message saying ‘Ervie is on the nest’. I want to thank her again as so many of you have told me that you checked my blog before checking the nest and were so thrilled to be able to see our magnificent Ervie. Oh, how we hoped he would connect with Dad. Maybe Ervie will soon. It really does seem that he is coming to the nest at least every other day – it is a matter of catching him. Ervie came to the nest, left, and returned with his puffer yesterday. He flew off again and returned at 14:48:16. He was drying off and what a handsome lad he was once those feathers were all fluffed. He will stay on the nest until 15:40:58.

Ervie must have not seen an adult as he was not calling. H also seemed to have a bit of a crop which made me wonder if he had another successful fishing trip. Near the end, Ervie made some sounds and flew off. I wonder what he saw? who was he calling.

Stop for a minute and look at how large Ervie’s wing is!!!!!!!!!!!

This is the latest tracker download from PLO on the 25th of February. Because it reads that it was loaded to the FB page 21 hours ago, I believe that this is Ervie’s earlier trip to the barge, the day prior.

The snow finally arrived in Ithaca at the nest of Big Red and Arthur. After all the work yesterday, they have been at the nest this morning for more than an hour each of them working hard. If you want to see the morning visit live, check on the streaming cam from 10:30-11:30 nest time.

Big Red is just as beautiful as always.

She hatched in 2003. It is believed that she probably had her first clutch in 2005. Cornell did not have a streaming cam on her and her nest until 2012. We know that between 2012 and 2021 Big Red incubated 27 fertile eggs. Out of those she fledged 26. The only one not to fledge was K2 last year who had an issue with her beak and had to be euthanized.

It is possible that between 2005 and 2021, Big Red fledged 48 juvenile hawks. Incredible. She is, after all, the ‘rock star’ of the Red-tail Hawk World with an international fan base of thousands.

Big Red busies herself with arranging some twigs around the edge, the cradle rails, if you like.

I wonder if her and Arthur will return today? We are definitely on the countdown to egg laying! Two to three weeks. Oh, joy!

The winds have started to pick up in Ithaca and the nest of Big Red and Arthur is rocking. It is 5 degrees C and the wind warnings for the area will last until 15:00 today.

Richmond is waiting on Rosie. Oh, I do hope she appears soon. It ‘feels’ late for her arrival from her migration to me. Richmond has not been on the nest but he has been close according to the Golden Gate Audubon FB page.

But wait! There has been an unidentified female coming to the nest but one of the watchers just posted on FB this image saying they believe Rosie has just arrived – an hour ago! Well, this would be so reassuring if it is her!

There was a nice big feeding at 11:28 on the Captiva nest. Dad brought in a Sheepshead.

Lena goes to the mangrove tree under the nest to get the fish from Andy leaving the trio alone. Do not worry. Both her and Andy are close at hand.

Lena and Andy both return to the nest where Lena prepares to feed the chicks. Andy is on high alert!

All lined up for their second meal of the day. How comforting is it to just look at those three being fed?

Here are a few images of that early morning feeding at 06:45. I love the colour of the landscape and the stillness of the water as the sun rises on the nest. It looks like a glaze colour called celadon with a hint of blue. Just gorgeous.

Everyone is fed well. There are no great calamities with Big or Middle Bob having to go first shutting Little Bob out.

It is so peaceful- just like Port Lincoln was this year with the three Bobs. They were all fed and had a really nice sleep between morning and the arrival of that second fish at 11:28. Well done Andy and Lena.

There are 2288 people watching Jackie incubate her and Shadow’s two eggs at Big Bear. In the background you can hear Ravens. They know there are eggs there and they will also know when the chicks hatch. These two eagles have to be so careful. They have made it this far and, as you can tell, they are two of the most popular eagles on the internet. Pip watch begins tomorrow. Send all your positive wishes to these two who have tried so hard to have chicks the last couple of years. Eggs have been stolen, broken because the shell is to thin due to residual DDT in the area, and chicks have died trying to hatch. The couple even had two clutches last year but to no avail. This year we are all very positive that it is ‘their’ year for successful hatches and fledges.

You sure are beautiful, Jackie!

A quick check on Duke Farms. That little bobble that hatched yesterday at 14:28 is getting its first food. So if you are missing bobbles, head over to Duke Farms as you wait for Jackie and Shadow. This little one is soooooo cute.

It is time to feed our garden gang. Take care everyone. Thank you for joining me today. It is sunny and mild in Manitoba – a good day for a walk after the gang is fed. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen capture: Cornell Bird Lab, Window on Wildlife and Captiva Ospreys, Golden Gate Audubon, Friends of Big Bear, Duke Farms, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, and SF Bay Ospreys.