Monday Updates in Bird World

The snow and rain persisted in the North East longer after bringing bitter cold, rain, tornado warnings, and ice in the SE. Last night those white flakes piled up on Big Red and Arthur’s nest at Cornell University. This afternoon rain is falling in Ithaca.

There is still about 9 weeks before Big Red thinks about laying eggs. Suzanne Arnold Horning caught Big Red preening in the snow this morning. Big Red is always beautiful, no matter the weather.

The sun has come out on the WRDC nest of Ron and Rita. Hopefully this will make R1 nicer. Even Rita tried to stop his nonsense with R2 yesterday.

The behaviour of R1, more aggressive than normal during the day of the storm, was mirrored in E19 who was entirely unpleasant to E20 on Harriet and M15’s nest in Fort Myers. These two have been called the ‘the most sweet’ and ‘the most caring’ of all of Harriet and M15’s eaglets and yet, yesterday brought out the aggression.

The cameras at SWFlorida are having problems this morning. The IR remains on and they are all on different times. The camera should, at this moment, be reading 12:30. Those eaglets are fine. Hopefully today will calm E19 down.

The one nest that I have been concerned with is that at Berry College. Missy did real well during the storm yesterday. It appears that the chick attempting to hatch in the second egg has failed. As one of the chatters said this morning, ‘we are thankful for one feisty chick’. Agreed. Let Missy get some experience with this one! Fingers crossed that this little one, B15, will grow and thrive.

I checked on Missy late last night and was thrilled to see the precipitation had stopped.

What I would like to see is a pile of fish on that nest! Pa Berry, let’s go fishing.

No egg at Duke Farm but the nest continues to be restored by the pair of Bald Eagles that gave us those two magnificent fledges last year.

It is breezy and sunny at Hilton Head Island Trust Eagles Nest, home to Harriet and Mitch and their two eaglets. It certainly isn’t hot there and the forecast indicates that the temperatures will plunge on Thursday. Right now the babies are full of fish and sleeping.

Lori Covert at Captiva Bald Eagles has announced that the two eggs of Connie and Clive are either unfertilized or non-viable. No eaglets for Connie and her new mate this year, sadly.

There was a late fish delivery to Ervie on the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. I am not quite certain of the delivery time but Ervie was working on it after 20:00. At one point, Mum came over to see if she could get that fish off Ervie and he promptly booted her off the nest. Ervie!

Ervie did not finish that fish. He seems to have saved some of it for breakfast. He is sleeping on it!

Before signing off – I am late in feeding the garden birds and animals – a quick check on Anna and the little one. Louis has the pantry full – typical Louis -and this baby continues to delight. It is so strong. The Kisatchie National Forest nest is quickly rising like cream to the top in terms of my favourite Bald Eagle nests.

I know that there has been a lot of chatter about Louis being able to feed lots more chicks. Yes, he could. He could supply Berry College easily and keep Anna and babies full. That said, my preference will always be for one very healthy chick at each nest – always. Anna is a young Mum. This is only her second breeding season. Ease her into larger clutches gently! If ever.

This eaglet is the cutest! Seriously.

Thank you so much for joining me this morning. They all seemed to have survived the storms well. Such a relief. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Berry College, WRDC, SWFlorida, Hilton Head Island Trust, Port Lincoln Ospreys, KNF Bald Eagle Cam, Duke Farms, Cornell Bird Lab, and Suzanne Arnold Horning for the image of Big Red today.

KNF Hatch Progressing Well

The hatching at the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest is progressing nicely. These are the latest images of the egg at 12:58 CDT.

As you are probably aware, the adults do not help the chick hatch. It is too dangerous for the fragile baby. There are also thoughts that the chick must survive the hatch to be able to survive in the wild.

The chick has a nice hole but it needs to get through that membrane.

It is unclear if this is egg 1 or egg 2. Anna had a bad landing and broke one of the eggs. Egg 1 would be 38 days old today and egg 2 would be 35 days old. It is a bit of a toss up. There were some marks on egg 1 and many watchers believe the egg that survived is egg 1. At the end of the day, it only matters for the data which egg it is. I simply want a healthy chick to get out of that egg. You can hear the sweet little thing cheeping sometimes. Anna must be excited.

Louis has returned to the nest. Is he wanting Anna to give him a turn? or is he there protecting the nest? Eagles that hatch with the membranes like this usually take a little longer than the clear break of the egg. Everything will be fine though! It just could be a little while.

Oh, thank you. You can see the chick’s beak with the egg tooth breaking that hole big. All around the shell is crushed.

Hi there…just a little longer. What an adorable little chirp. The eaglet has now broken through that membrane and can breathe air! It is doing so well.

That little one is really chirping. You can actually see it push outwards from inside the shell. Adorable. Anna watches her little one try to break into the world. This will be the second successful hatch for this young couple.

Anna is being so careful.

There are still no signs of a pip at Berry College. Both adults were on the nest when I checked in. Eggs were being rolled.

As far as I know, there are no pips at NEFlorida with Gabby and Samson yet.

If we are lucky, they will all pip and hatch on different days. It would be very difficult to watch all the eagle nests! Possible. But much better one at a time! With Harriet and M15’s E19 and E20 moving into the stage of getting feather growth, it is really exciting to have some new bobble heads coming our way.

I wonder what is going on at Captiva? Clive got off of the eggs and there is no real close up. Pip? Unknown.

So what is up with the PLO Lads? Sometimes when I check, it is only Ervie on the camera. Are there other family members on the barge? It is hard to say. Some could be sitting up on the wheel house. Mum and Dad could be over on the old barge so they have some peace and quiet!

Late in the evening, around 20:44, Ervie took off from the perch. At this time it appears that no one else is on the barge. He flies around the barge. He is seen on camera several times.

Gone.

Flying back.

Ervie does this interesting touch take off on the nest.

I wanted to make sure it was Ervie. You can see his sat-pak between the wings clearly in the image below.

Ervie returns at 20:45:23 to the nest with a very small fish it appears. Now this is the question. We can see no other members of the family on camera. But it is also impossible to tell if Ervie is wet. The camera is blurry for some reason. If he were wet, then he would have caught the fish. I actually suspect one of the adults delivered Ervie the small fish off camera. That is always something to remember- just because we cannot see what is happening does not mean it isn’t happening. Adult Osprey deliver fish at various locations for their fledglings.

In the middle of the night there are at least two other family members on the barge with Ervie on the nest — ‘his’ nest.

Morning has come and everyone appears to be off the barge leaving Ervie on the nest.

Ron has been doing a great job feeding R1 and R2 on the WRDC Bald Eagle nest. Those little ones are doing really, really well. Always a variety of food!

It has warmed up on the Canadian Prairies. It is now a balmy -14 C. Seriously after -32 it almost feels like spring. Most of the birds in the garden are the European Starlings. I think they are gorgeous birds.

Today is also bread making day and it is time to take those loaves out of the oven and find some nice butter.

Thank you for joining me. It is so exciting. There will be a fluff ball down at the KNF nest soon! Take care everyone. Please stay safe.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: the KNF Bald Eagle Nest, Berry College Eagle Nest, NE Florida Bald Eagle Nest and the AEF, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, and the Captiva Bald Eagle Cam.

Sunday in Bird World

Oh, wow. It is a bright sunny Sunday on the Canadian Prairies. There is no snow falling and the temperature dropped from that very nice -14 C at midnight to -24 C this morning. It is supposed to further drop to -29 C. When I went out to fill all of the feeders, Dyson was on top of the large suet cylinder chewing away. He took no mind of me as I worked around him until I got the camera out. Then he scurried away! The now regular 28 European Starlings were the first to arrive. They were followed by the several hundred Sparrows. The chickadee seems to find a way to manage in the midst of all of them but I have not seen Junior or Mr and Mrs Blue Jay for a couple of weeks. Little Red will wake up sometime around 14:00 and join the garden gang. When it is cold like it is today the feeders are all filled twice. Thank goodness for bulk buying!!!

Louis just gave up his incubation duties at the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest. He gave us a quick glimpse of the egg. Doesn’t look like a pip yet.

Louis had his talon caught in some of the Spanish Moss and it completely covered the egg. I wonder if this is egg #2? One of them was broken by Anna when she was landing one day in December. If it is #2, then pip watch could be delayed until Tuesday.

Annie arrives at 12:00:33 and there is a nice view of the egg after the moss is cleared away. Anna is looking at the egg closely. The adults will be able to hear the eaglet inside if all is well as we near pip.

The news coming out of Captiva Bald Eagle Nest on Sanibel Island is that there is no pip yet for Connie and Clive. Last night Lena 2 laid the first egg for the Captiva Osprey Nest.

Pa Berry is incubating the egg at the Berry College Eagle Nest. There is no pip there and they are expecting rain today. The weather has been terrible for this pair. There was snow last night and high winds and hail the other day. I honestly did not think the tree would survive that storm never mind Missey who was hanging on and keeping those eggs safe.

E19 and E20 are fast asleep at the SWFlorida Eagle Nest in Fort Myers. Their only job is to grow – so they eat and sleep. Adorable.

It got a little too hot under Mum but the shade is really nice! The Mumbrella.

Bald Eaglet spells ‘cute’. These two are really growing. Notice the egg tooth is almost completely gone.

R1 and R2 are ready for some lunch at the WRDC nest. It will be around 26 degrees C for these Miami-Dade eaglets today. I hope there is a nice breeze.

Here is a view of the Hilton Head Bald Eagle Nest in South Carolina. What a magnificent nest.

The two eaglets of Harriet and Mitch are in a food coma. They are doing very well. I love their fat little bottoms and tails. They scoot around pushing and moving with their wings.

Awwww. I have been watching the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge closely. You will recall that both Ervie and Falky had early morning fish. Then Bazza, who had a crop, decided to push Falky off the ropes. I was quite afraid for Falky but, on his third try, with a cool head, he was able to free himself from the water. It was brilliant.

Ervie decided that he was not giving up the nest. Indeed, control of the nest is all important by the dominant bird. That is how it came to be that Erive had four fish deliveries yesterday. The deliveries were at 07:08, 15:29:44, 18:05, 18:30, and at 18:40 Ervie seems to find another fish on the nest! His crop should have popped! There is clearly a reason that there is competition for the nest!!!!!!!

At 17:40, Ervie still had a crop from the 15:29 fish.

Ervie spots one of the adults coming in with a fish. It is Dad.

That was a nice fish for Ervie.

Ervie was still eating the 18;05 fish when Mum landed on the nest with a small fish. Falky flies over from the ropes to retrieve that little fish.

So there is Ervie in the back eating his fish and mantling. Mum is in the middle with the fish under her left talon. Falky has gotten turned around and is facing us.

Mum decides she wants out of there quick. Falky is still facing the wrong way. Ervie has his fish under his talons and is mantling.

Ervie decides he doesn’t like Falky on the nest and boots him off. Ervie takes both of the fish.

Now Ervie has two fish to eat! It seems like Ervie has been eating all day. There is no sharing like they did as youngsters. These are three males that will be future rivals if they are not fully already.

Ervie was selected for the sat-pak because he was believed to be the best bet for survival. I continue to say that made a perfect choice. It may feel entirely unfair but it takes confidence, creativity, and cleverness to survive it seems.

Ervie sleeping on the nest in the middle of the night.

Ervie is on the nest and Falky is on the ropes waiting for that first fish delivery. Wonder who will get it?

Other Bird News: Rafa Benjumea has reported that the recent count of Ospreys in the Sanctuaire des Balbuzards in Senegal is 161. That is excellent news. How many Bald Eagle nests and couples do you think are in the small state of New Jersey? The 2021 count shows 247 Bald Eagle Nests. Out of those, 222 were active. 296 eaglets hatched and there were 27 new Bald Eagle couples. That is quite the count! There are growing numbers of Bald Eagles being admitted to Rehab Clinics with high lead levels. A few make it while a lot perish. It is a simple fix: stop using lead in hunting and fishing equipment! If there is one thing that you can do this year to help the birds is to get on your computer and write to the politicians in your area asking them to ban lead in hunting and fishing equipment. While you are at it, you might want to ask them to ban the manufacture and sale of any type of rodenticide. We remain on pip watch for Captiva, KNF, and Berry College – and we are getting close to a pip watch for NEFlorida with Samson and Gabby.

Thank you so much for joining me today. So happy there are so many people who get joy from the birds! It is heart warming. Take care. See you soon.

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Hilton Head Eagle Cam, SWFlorida Eagle Cam and D Pritchett, WRDC Eagle Cam, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Berry College Eagle Cam, and the KNF Eagle Cam.

Catching up with Ervie

I have spent so much time watching Daisy, recording the happenings on the nest, and sleeping at odd hours that many of the other nests have been neglected. One of those is the Port Lincoln Osprey nest in Australia. I stopped in today to check on Ervie’s movements by the Sat-Pak and there were some gorgeous images of this juvenile male Osprey by Take 2 Photography, Fran Solly.

Ervie has been all over the place. Many are expecting him to leave the area of the barge. I wonder how far Ervie will go?

These were Ervie’s movements yesterday. Oh, he does love to fly.

Fran Solly went out and took these images of Ervie flying around the coast. Isn’t he just such a handsome bird?! My goodness, Ervie. You are doing Mum and Dad proud.

Male Ospreys tend to return to where they hatched to make their nests. I wonder if all three lads will show up at the same time? And I learned a new word today ‘Dust Up.’ Do you know this word? Remember when Ervie and Bazza were knocking one another about the nest – or off it – that is apparently a ‘Dust Up.’ Love it. Sounds so much better than saying Bazza just knocked Ervie off the edge of the nest! or Vice Versa.

Other Bird News: Gabby and Samson continue to have a sub-adult intruder coming around. No eggs on that nest yet. Aren’t they gorgeous?

Samson on the left and Gabby on the right.

We could be less than 2 weeks away from the first hatch at the Southwest Florida nest of Harriet and M15.

I have seen no weather warnings for Florida – like the disturbances going through the Midwest and the winds up in the Finger Lakes area of upstate New York.

Harriet is alerting. There is a predator around. Is it the Great Horned Owl (GHOW)?

Anna is incubating two eggs at the Kistachie National Forest Bald Eagle Nest in Central Louisiana. Louis continues to be so exciting. He is great for bringing in the fish but he is also softening up that nest with tonnes of Spanish Moss.

Connie is incubating two eggs over at Captiva, too. Her new mate is Clive. Hopefully this nest will have some luck. That said, local pelicans are being brought into care for red algae.

All of the Bald Eagle nests outside of the tornado and storm areas in the US are fine. More Ospreys are being spotted on the Iberian Peninsula and in Africa which is a grand sign. Ferris Akel was thrilled to see three Snowy Owls today on his tour. One even flew for him. I should invite him to Manitoba for the winter. One of our birders spotted 25 Snowy Owls in a short drive around the agricultural fields. — And a reminder. The owls in the Central US have been found to be thin and dehydrated. They are blaming this on photographers trying to get images and scaring away their prey. As you know I am a raptor lover – they often do not eat for several days so when you see one hunting or eating – leave it alone, please. Stay way, way back. Invest in a long lens!

It is very quiet morning at Daisy’s nest. A couple of times I have heard the cawing of the Ravens but Daisy has been peaceful, unfluttered would be a good word. There will be a late night catch up on her nesting activities.

This is not a Raptor Time: Watch this Titmouse modify its nest, bring in nesting materials, and hatch and fledge 11 chicks in Japan. Seriously it will put a smile on your face. I wish I could transport Daisy and her eggs into a box like this! Oh, she even wiggles her little bottom like Daisy. Here is the link:

Happy Saturday everyone. Take care. Thank you so much for joining me.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, their photos, or their FB Pages where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey, Port Lincoln Osprey FB Page, Fran Solly, SWFlorida Eagle Cam and D Pritchett Family, NEFlorida Eagle Cam and the AEF, KNF Bald Eagle Cam, Captiva Bald Eagle Cam.

Considering Electra

I have been thinking about Electra all day…and have spent several blogs trying to gain some insight into her behaviour on the Cowlitz PUD nest since her last chick died of heat stroke. She has spent more time at the nest today than yesterday when it was deathly hot. She food calls when she sees Wattsworth. She stands like a sentry. She spent the night at the nest.

I have been given examples of raptor behaviour when the eggs have been broken and the female continues in incubation mode because of her hormones. Many of you have also seen other raptors incubating eggs for long periods of time when they are unviable. That is one behaviour. But, I am going to go out on a limb and say that the behaviour displayed by Electra is different.

There are no eggs to hatch. How does an Osprey mourn? While I believe that Electra ‘understood’ the death of the first by siblicide, she returned to find her second chick had died – a chick with a crop and seemingly healthy. This just took me back to the situation on Captiva Bald Eagle Nest on Santibel Island this early spring.

Some of you will remember that traumatic event. Joe had brought a rat to the nest and had fed baby Hope and Peace. Peace died almost before anyone could realize how ill she was. Hope grew and only died when one of her blood feathers broke and she bled out. It was the rodenticide, the rat poison that did not allow her blood to coagulate. The father, Joe stood over the body of Peace in the Captiva Bald Eagle Nest in Santibel, Florida. Joe stayed with his baby until the corpses of both Peace and Hope were removed for autopsy. In the end, Joe was so traumatized by the events on the nest that his role as dominant male was usurped.

Joe is not the only male that has shown a response to trauma. Another good example is Romeo on the NE Florida Nest. When Juliette was injured by an intruding female and did not return, Romeo tried to take care of the nest. When he went to get food for the eaglet the intruder returned and took the chick. Romeo left and never returned to his nest.

What I am saying is that I do not think that we can always put behaviours of the birds down to ‘hormones’ or instincts. What Electra is doing is different than incubating and she is not brooding the chicks. She is standing over them, like Joe at Captiva.

We will never get into the mystery of precisely how Joe or Electra are feeling. My thoughts on this behaviour are simply my own observations based on deaths at other nests. I do not know how Electra has responded to the death of her chicks in the past and if this current behaviour is any different.

Other females have lost Osprey chicks and left the nest completely not to return. Landa did not, as I recall, return to the Urdaibai Biosphere Park in Spain after her last two chicks died of hypothermia this year. Others like Mrs G moved her dead chicks to the edge of the nest and she now spends time eating fish and being on the nest with Aran. Mrs G and Aran also accepted the community fish and those were brought to the nest. At other times an only chick dies and the mother has to continue to care for other little ones.

The response to tragedy is not always uniform and predicted.

Tiny Tot has had to deal with an intruder today. Jack owes Tiny lots of fish! There is also concern as Tropical Storm moves from the Caribbean to Florida early nest week. It should be dissipated enough to only cause 34 mph winds. I will keep you posted.

I want to close with leaving you something beautiful to watch. You might never have seen it before. It is a sight not seen in Poole Harbour, England for 200 years. Imagine. 200 Years. It is an Osprey doing a sky dance. This is two year old male 022 trying to impress CJ7. They will not raise a family until next year but 022 is extremely earnest in his desire to bond with CJ7 at the Poole Harbour Nest!

Thank you for joining me today. Take care everyone.

Thank you to the COWLITZ PUD for their streaming cam where I grabbed my screen shots of Electra and the chicks.