2 Fledges in Bird World and more…Wednesday morning

24 August 2022

It is hard to believe that the summer is almost over. The teachers and students do not go back to class until after Labour Day here but they continue to have classes throughout June. There is a different look to the top of the trees and I noticed today that my tomato plants are looking a little rough. In his book Mistletoe Winter, Roy Dennis describes Autumn as ‘the altruism time of diligent creatures’. He is referring to the Blue Jays which “only reached the North of Scotland in the last 40 years” and who are busy storing away acorns for the winter. Dennis notes that some of their stash will be forgotten or overlooked. The acorns will germinate inside the bramble bush protected from the deer and will, in effect, grow nuts for future generations as well as the old Oak trees. Likewise, the Red Squirrels will be working away at the hazel nut trees. The animals in the garden are becoming increasingly interested in stashing food for the winter here in Winnipeg despite the fact that the day time temperatures are still in the high 20s C.

In the Mailbox:

‘P’ wrote: “Last year you and I connected when the chick was forced off the nest and died….Was there any nesting this season? I cannot find any thing on the site at all.” It turns out that the nest in question is Collins Marsh. To refresh everyone’s memory, one chick hatched last year at Collins Marsh in Wisconsin. The fish delivered to the nest were small and not always plentiful. One or another parent seemed to be absent at times. The little osplet was adorable. One of my readers ‘S’ suggested the name, Malin meaning ‘Little Warrior’ and it won. Malin would need to be a warrior to survive on that nest. Then one day an intruder came, Mum flew off and Malin, scared to death flew off the nest, too. Malin was not ready to fledge. ‘S’ and I spent hours on the phone trying to get immediate help. It did not come. (That is a long complicated story and I am still unhappy about the response of the naturalist at the time). The platform was on top of a moved fire tower. It had no perch and it was deathly hot. As a result, the ospreys did not make a nest there this year, 2022. Were they old? did they no survive migration? Or did they also realize it was not a safe place to raise their family? I was told by DNR personnel doing nest surveys that there was an unused nest about a mile away. They might have gone there. But with the intruder and a poor food source they might have moved out of that area altogether.

‘B’ wrote and wondered, awhile ago, if there was anything else that we can do to gather things up for the rehab clinics and what might they be? So who else better to answer that question that ‘L’ who works at the Audubon Centre in Florida. ‘L’ says “I often reach out to our neighbourhood communities because as you rightly say, money is so tight for so many but its amazing what we have in our homes that would just be thrown out. I ask for any donations that are paper related. Paper towel and toilet roll cardboard inserts, newspaper for lining crates and are used for enrichment will continue to become more and more scarce since the news is on the Internet plus old or ignored dog toys like kongs and ropes. Believe it or not, one of the most popular enrichment items are paper flowers and streamer type decorations (I swear I will make raptor friendly piñatas lol). They all LOVE paper in various degrees of thickness.” What an amazing list! I will continue to add clean loved but well used towels and sheets plus all manner of cleaning supplies. Sometimes the rehab clinics have their own lists on line. You can check for local needs. I wonder about having a sort of neighbourhood drive to gather up items. And I never thought of gently used dog toys!

‘W’ writes: ‘There is a nest of baby robins in my tree. I am disturbed by persistent distress calls from from one bird and then another. I don’t know why, and I feel helplessly alarmed. I’m sitting watching the nest, hoping to see one of the robins go to the nest, during this whole time of callings neither parent has appeared. What can it be? As it happens I have asked our local wildlife veterinary student this same question only with regard to another species. The parents will move away from the nest alarming to scare the intruder away but, at the same time, they do not go to the nest to show the predator where it is. —- I have noticed also when I am on walks in the nature centre that the Canada Geese are quite protective of their little ones. One will act as a security guard while some of the others will be decoys trying to get my attention elsewhere and away from where the goslings are located. That could definitely be what is happening with the Robin family. Have any of you had similar experiences?

‘S’ asks, “YRK has been coming in to feed QT very frequently. Do you think she is looking for OGK?” I think YRK is absolutely looking for OGK. They often came in or landed close to one another when they were raising Miss Pippa Atawhai. It was really delightful to see the two of them rejoice in being close to one another. I know that YRK has even gone up the hill to Pippa’s nest – she has to be wondering what has happened to OGK and why she has not seen him. The NZ DOC will not declare OGK officially deceased until he doesn’t return in October of 2023. He was injured once and was away for 40 days but he has not been seen since the middle of May. We wait with hope but, I am a bit of a realist and I believe he is no longer with us.

‘P’ asked: Do any of the raptors fish at night? What a timely question! Last night Dad at the Sydney Sea Eagle nest brought in a fish late at night. Alden at the Cal Falcons nest seems to always hunt at night. It is thought it could be his injured leg and he hunts then to avoid the other big raptors at night. Of course the song birds are about and with the light of SF he seems to do quite well. There have been others who have brought in fish at night. We certainly know that Ospreys do fish at night but the nests escape me this morning. — Then there are the Great Horned Owls and other owls who silently hunt at night. This is their time!

From the News – Digital and Broadsheet:

It may not seem like much but this is a major victory for the anti-grouse hunting movement in the UK. What is at issue is that pheasants and grouse are imported so they can be shot by visitors to the big estates where shooting continues to be a sport. The problem is that the game’s keepers often kill raptors that come on to the estate lands to hunt. Today, the Ritz in London announced that grouse is off the menu. Expect others to follow! Yes.

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2022/aug/20/game-over-the-ritz-takes-grouse-off-the-menu-in-victory-for-environment-campaigners

Canadians are watching the geese and raptors and this morning lines of Canada Geese were seen flying south from 2 hours north of Winnipeg. This is early. Since 2019 the associations studying the climate crisis and its impact on birds have given us warnings that things are changing quickly. The insects that many depend on to feed their young are hatching earlier. If the birds arrive at the same time as what has been normal, there will be less food and thus, less offspring. The floods this spring and summer have left many moving to other areas and we have fewer and fewer ducklings and goslings in the City of Winnipeg this year. As I have noted in earlier blogs my concern is now with the few little fuzzy ducklings that are in some of the ponds. Will they survive to fledge? A heating planet means that we may well see many of the raptors breeding a month early.

In 2020, the UN had an autumn lecture on how the changing climate will impact raptors. Two years ago…things change quickly. I will be looking for an update for us for this fall but this is a good beginning to understand what changes we may see in our favourite raptor families as the planet heats.

Nest News:

Today, we have two fantastic fledges to celebrate. We have been waiting and waiting for LC to fledge from the Osoyoos nest of Soo, Olsen, and BC. This afternoon, after spending the morning jumping from the nest to a cable, LC flew!!!!!!!! The time was 14:29:24 the 23rd of August 2022. “H’ sent a video (thank you ‘H’ for this and confirmation of the time). Don’t blink. It is only seconds long.

‘A-M’ lives a bit of a distance from the Osoyoos nest. You might remember that she travelled to Osoyoos to search for the chick that fell off the edge of the nest. ‘A-M’ found the wee one dead but she placed it in a quiet spot in a very dignified way. Today, excited like everyone waiting for this moment at Osoyoos, ‘A-M’ drove in to see if she could see the family. This is her report: “I went to the nest around 4:15pm LC was on the camera pole and BC joined, they sat there for a good half hour chatting to each other. Mum flew on to pole around 16:37 and BC flew to nest. I watched Soo sit with LC on the pole and BC fly to the tree where Olsen hangs out. So beautiful to see BC fly around the area and to see LC out the nest, they both are stunning. I will check on them in a few days to see if I can capture a video clip of LC in flight.”

The other fledge was at Glacier Gardens. Love fledged. Now we will wait for Peace. Here is the video of her first flight:

There have been no sightings of the Notre-Dame Eagle family. ND15, Little Bit’s caring sibling, left the territory earlier. Little Bit has been easy to spot on his perch on the St Joseph River but the birders on the ground report that not even a squee has been heard anywhere. It is that time of year. If they have left for their migration may we all wish them strong wings, lots of prey, and a good long productive life.

There is a lot of curiosity about Trey, Mama Cruz’s 2019 fledgling with her mate, Pride. Someone has put together a video of the ‘dust up’ between Mama Cruz and Trey at the nest:

We are waiting for the first egg to arrive at the Charles Sturt falcon scrape in Orange, Australia. Today, Xavier brought in what appeared to be some road kill and Diamond was quite happy to eat it. The moderator added that the falcons are quite happy to eat road kill when other prey is scarce. All I could think of was — we don’t want a year where the prey is scarce!

The sea eaglets continue to do well. If you look at the other camera, rather than the one looking down on the nest, you will always get a good look at Lady’s fluffy white bottom! It is also nice to see the chicks in profile. Gives you a whole different understanding of their size.

They had nice crops around 1220.

And there was another feeding a few hours later.

In Port Lincoln, it has been rainy and a bit miserable. Mum thinks Dad is just taking far too long with the fish for her liking. She does do some screaming at him and is quick to get off the eggs when he arrives. Estimated hatch day is 19 September.

According to the Port Lincoln FB page, Ervie has been showing off his skills o visitors staying in the Port Lincoln Hotel! I wonder how many of us would love to be on the roof watching him????????

And just when I thought that all attention would soon be turning to the birds in Australia, look who shows up at their nest inside the Miami Zoo! Rita and Ron.

Look at that crop…it appears to be bursting the feathers at the seams.

The Papadam nest seems to have worked great for R1 and R2. If you are fans of Ron and Rita they might start working on getting it into shape for the next breeding season.

Cal Falcons caught Alden in the scrape calling Annie.

What a beautiful place to raise osplets – the Dyfi nest in Wales, home to Idris and Telyn.

It is a damp grey morning but, oh, so green and lovely. Quiet.

Earlier there was a Magpie on the nest and one of the fledglings eating a fish. I wonder if the Magpie was waiting for leftovers?

There has been an intruder on the nest today, possibly a Scottish juvenile on the move. The whole of the UK Osprey population (and all other migrating birds) are beginning to move to the south so there will be lots of visitors just stopping in at nests. I hope to have a good list of all the departures on Friday. Mrs G is still at Glaslyn. She stole a fish off one of the juveniles that Aran delivered not long ago.

Checking on Kaia, the Black Stork mate of Karl II who turned back from the Ukraine to feed in Belarus. I am watching Kaia’s movements closely as this could give us some insights into the other storks and raptors migrating from the north through the area of The Ukraine.

Kaia began her day near the Veluta Lake in Belarus where she has been for about a week. She then flew a distance of 143 km and is in the wetlands near the Pripyat River, a little northeast of Veresnitsa, and southeast of Povchin in the Gomel Oblast in Belarus. The small village has 1070 citizens. Looduskalender notes that Kaia is feeding within a few metres of another Black Stork with a tracker, Timmu. So she is feeding and remains safe. Relief. It is hoped that the storks and other raptors can find a way around the Ukraine. War has many sides and none of them are good for birds.

Take care everyone. Thank you so much for being with me today. Congratulations to Osoyoos and Glacier Gardens on their fledges. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for the streaming cams and/or posts where I took my screen captures: Osoyoos Ospreys, ‘H’ and ‘A-M’, Glacier Gardens, Explore.org and the IWS, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Port Lincoln Ospreys, WRDC, Cal Falcons, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, and Looduskalender and the Estonia Eagle Club.

Ervie, fledges and more – early Tuesday in Bird World

9 August 2022

First a correction! Shame on me for saying we know where Telyn winters. It is not Telyn but, the beautiful Seren from Llyn Clywedog that spends her winters in The Gambia. I knew that and wrote Telyn. Thanks, ‘C’ for alerting me. Much appreciated!

One other clarification that ‘CE’ caught that needs explaining. Osprey fledglings are the raptors that do not require their parents to teach them to hunt or fish. Others do. You will have seen the eagles and hawks showing their fledglings how to hunt prey! I bet Ervie did chase Dad around in his efforts to find some good fishing spots, though!

Ervie, dear Ervie. Port Lincoln posted images after I had sent out my blog last evening so our dear Ervie is up first. Thanks to ‘B’ for alerting me to these.

As so many of you are aware, Port Lincoln Ospreys is working hard to introduce our fish eagles to Southern Australia. They are getting attention from government agencies and, of course, the population is growing to love these birds – many because of our dear Ervie. Here are the latest postings from Port Lincoln and the beautiful pictures of Ervie out fishing with Dad by Fran Solly. There are more on the Port Lincoln Osprey FB page. Head over and have a look. This is the place to continue checking on Ervie and his antics with Dad — or alone.

It is always good to see you, Ervie.

Is there room for you, Ervie??????!!!!!!

Remember when we worried that Ervie would only be able to catch puffers? Well, he has certainly adjusted to fishing without that other talon (I have not seen it fully grown in on the pictures but I would love to be corrected!). That is a beautiful fish. Well done, Ervie.

At the Black Stork nest in the Karula National Forest of Karl II and Kaia, Bonus, the adopted storklet of Jan and Janika, Bonus, fledged first today. He was followed by Volks who hears Bonus in the forest and flies off to the left.

Both returned to the nest. Ilks is looking at his reflection in the camera. Will you fly next? So funny when they find themselves. After fledging the Black Storks will stay at least a week around the nest being fed. If the food is plentiful they may stay longer before venturing out to find food for themselves and beginning migration.

As ‘B’ says, it is hard to beat the WBSE for cuteness. SE30 is a bit of a corker. When it was 2 days old, 30 beaked at 29. Not a good thing to do. We have all worried about 30 but unless there is an unexpected ‘something’, they should both be fine. SE30 gives as good as it gets and they both fool around with one another and then seem to stop before it gets too rough.

Chubby little bottoms. Their soft down on the head is giving way to pin feathers and the feathers are coming in nicely along the wings. They will begin to do a lot more preening as things get itchy. You can see their black talons and those big clown feet getting started. So cute.

Of the streaming cams in Australia, we now have the WBSE eaglets and the first egg at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge for Mum and Dad as of yesterday. We are awaiting the beginning of the season for Peregrine falcons Xavier and Diamond and the Melbourne CBD – 367 Collins Street. Xavier and Diamond are amping up the bonding in the scrape! Eggs before the end of the month?

The only chick on the Landscape Arboretum platform at the University of Minnesota fell off yesterday. It has not fledged. Here is the video of that incident. This could have turned out badly – and would have if not for the quick actions at finding the chick and getting it back on the nest. Thanks to all involved!

Boris and Titi (yet to fly) on the Janakkalan nest in Finland. 9 August 2022. Handsome!

All of the White Storklings of Betty and Bukacek have fledged. They seem to spend their time finding the parents and following them back to the nest for good feedings.

Look carefully. Bukacek is flying into the nest from the left (right above the grassy area at 930 on the nest).

All of the storklings came to the nest quickly so as not to miss a meal.

All of the UK chicks have fledged. This year the three at Foulshaw Moss did not get the best attention from me – in terms of publicizing the nest activities here on the blog. Last year I followed every move because of the third hatch – Blue 463 who survived and did extremely well. Waiting for her return next year! The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust have put out a very nice blog with an overview of the nest activities including some links to videos.

https://www.cumbriawildlifetrust.org.uk/blog/alasdair-mckee/there-were-three-nest-and-littlest-fledged?fbclid=IwAR3EmfM6q7y1XNIqdvENXGlh8x4VhZve9AwmrsA4vAFcs_XRrvXubF76BhM

There appears to have been a fledge this morning at the Fortis Exshaw Osprey platform near Canmore Alberta. Thanks ‘H’ for the tip off! They seem to all be relatively equal – perhaps the others will fly today. You can see Mum looking on over the nest at her three beautiful chicks from the perch.

The fledge was a quick take off, fly around the nest and return landing on the right side.

I am counting a fledge as a flight off the nest and a return. In my mind, the chicks jumping up or getting to the many perches is equivalent to branching for Eagles, not a full blown official fledge. The real question is how far away is the perch? It is too difficult to tell. Mum certainly looks small and if it is a distance, then it might be counted as a fledge. If that is the case, then there were two fledges at Canmore this morning so far.

Big Red, Arthur, and L2 have all been accounted for by Suzanne Arnold Horning this week. Excellent news. Still no recent updates on L3 or L4.

L2 in the top picture screaming for a prey item and Big Red and Arthur calmly relaxing in the second.

Everyone remains curious as to how Victor got so much zinc in his system that he almost died. The Institute for Wildlife Studies has indicated that there are fishing lures coated with zinc. Thanks ‘B’. Here is the posting on the chat at the IWS. The question still remains: how much zinc does a fledgling eagle have to ingest to almost kill it? I do not know the answer to that question but I hope to find out.

The posting of the images of Little Bit 17 prompted a lot of mail. Everyone is thrilled and so very reassured that it is our little tenacious eagle. So grateful to the boots on the ground for chasing after this family and sharing their photos and videos with us on the Notre Dame Eagles FB.

‘CE’ had a very interesting analogy that seems quite fitting given the sponsors of the camera and the university that they are associated with – Notre-Dame. CE noted that the image of Little Bit looks like a Franciscan Friar with his friar’s crown. He said, “In the 5th century, the tonsure was introduced as a distinctive sign. In the East, the Pauli tonsure was used (all hair was cut), in the West, the Petri tonsure (only the top of the head was shaved). This was also called Corona Christi (Crown of Christ). Since the 16th century, the tonsure of regular clerics has been reduced to a small circle.” Friar Little Bit. It sounds nice.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is lovely to have you with us and the birds. I will continue to monitor the nests during the day. Tomorrow I am heading north for two days to count and enter the GPS for the Bald Eagle nests in and around Hecla Island. That information will be sent to David Hancock whose foundation monitors bald eagle nests in Canada. I hope to get some good images of the adults and juveniles before they leave for their winter homes. There will not be a newsletter tomorrow morning but I will try my best to get some images out to you tomorrow evening. Please take dare. I look forward to seeing you again soon.

I want to thank everyone who wrote in and sent me news. I still have some of your images to post! Much appreciated. I want to also thank the following for their streaming cams and/or posts or their photographs that I used for my screen captures: Fran Solly and the Port Lincoln Ospreys, Suzanne Arnold Horning, the Notre-Dame Eagles FB, the Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Mlade Buky White Storks, Fortis Exshaw, the Finnish Osprey Foundation, the IWS, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam, Landscape Arboretum Ospreys, and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park.

Migration woes and daily threats to our feathered friends

5 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It is a hazy day on the Canadian Prairies. The birds have been up early feeding as temperatures are set to rise to 29 degrees C today. The plants in the garden are looking a little droopy despite watering – we have been lucky to have all that rain. Some areas are really struggling. It is now a little after noon and the Crows and Blue Jays are reminding me that they need more peanuts and want their water changed! They are so smart. Wonder if I could teach them how to use the water hose?

I hope that you enjoyed seeing those beautiful pictures of Brooks back on the nest with Mum and Dad, Rosie and Richmond, at the WWII Whirley Crane. HE is well and beautiful. In case you missed it, Brooks (Blue XA) arrived back to the nest yesterday in the late afternoon and DNA testing has confirmed that Brooks is a male. Molate was also confirmed to be a male. This is a photo of him. He is very handsome.

Richmond does not migrate but Rosie does. Wonder which Brooks will choose? It is much safer to stay put!

Rosie has brought Brooks a lovely fish. Welcome home, Brooks.

Fish hooks and monofilament line are dangerous for all birds that eat fish like Ospreys and eagles. This is a reminder that things on nests can happen quickly — and for us to clean up our environment! Join a riverbank of lake clean up. It will make you proud that you have helped.

As we get ready to begin the great autumn migration, it is perhaps best if we take a deep breath. Migration is extremely dangerous especially for first year fledglings but it is becoming increasingly difficult for ‘seasoned’ birds as well.

I was surprised when I brought home a book from our nature centre, Atlas of bird Migration. Tracking the Great Journeys of the World’s Birds. It has good solid information on species with maps, information on the difference of gender in certain species as to migration —– and, hold on, out of 176 pages, four are devoted to “Threats and Conservation.” Out of those four, two pages had large photographs. The book lists: water (they show an oil spill), field and forest (they show fires), hunting and caging. Can you think of good current examples of these that will impact the birds we love heading to their winter quarters? what are they missing? Send your ideas to me and they will be included in a special blog on migration next Friday, 12 August.

Do you live anywhere near Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania? You can visit but, you can also take part in the annual count. Here are the dates that the birds fly over. Even if you didn’t help with the count what a special time to see the birds flying with the thermals, soaring over the mountains on their way to South America.

Hawk Mountain has kept track of spring and autumn migrations since 1934. You can go to their link and see population shifts. It is an eye-opener in some cases.

https://www.hawkmountain.org/conservation-science/resources/migration-data

Each of the nests below has faced or is facing challenges like many others. If you looked at the picture of the nest could you come up with issues they have faced? Try it before reading my text!

The two osplets at the Osoyoos Osprey nest have not fledged yet. They are working on some wingersizing. Caught them enjoying an early fish from Olsen this morning. Today will be good but by Sunday the temperatures at the nest will be 36 rising to 38 on Monday and 40 on Tuesday. Extreme heat has been an issue at this nest for several years with the temperatures continuing to rise and rise.

Thanks to the lovely people who live around the Notre-Dame Eagle nest we have more pictures of ND 15, 16, and Little Bit 17. It is always so funny…Little Bit seems to love to hide behind the small branches with leaves. So grateful to all those keeping track of the trio!

Hi Sweetheart.

The Parramatta River and Sydney Harbour have some significant toxins in the water that impacts the fish eaten by the sea birds.

The toxins leaked into the river from a shipping container company as reported in The Sydney Morning Herald on 16 May 2009. The article said, “The Patrick’s site on the Camellia peninsula, near Rosehill Racecourse, has been found to be leaking the chemical Chromium VI, posing a risk to people and marine life.”

In 2017, 2ser 107.3 reported that the Parramatta River was a “toxic time bomb.” They said, “Fifty years of toxic chemical residue is sitting on the bottom of Sydney Harbour and the Parramatta River. It’s a toxic time-bomb and disturbing this sediment could worsen already dire pollution levels. And now sweeping developments along the shore of the River could be bringing more pollution to the already sullied waters.” While many might have hoped to swim in the river before they were too elderly to do so, contaminated storm water was pumped into the river in December 2020 causing more problems.

It is unclear what impact this is having on the White-bellied Sea Eagles who are at the top of the food chain along the river. Despite research being carried out, the direct implication to these WBSE is not normally discussed. If you know of a study with results, please let me know.

Lady with WBSE 29 and 30. They are filling up the nest cup!

Karl and Kaia missed each other by a flap of a wing. The fish basket has been replenished! Karl II rains down fish on the storklets. You can see the fish on the nest in the image below and then in the video. So grateful for Urmas and his fish baskets that have kept this family in good health. Areas where the Black Storks used to fish is becoming too developed and it is becoming more difficult to find fish – so grateful for the intervention. I continue to question whether or not it would work -in nests impacted by human action such as Osoyoos – to place a fish basket for the Ospreys? Would they use it? We are constantly told that the temperatures we are experiencing now are not going to alter but will get hotter. We need to work on plans for the birds.

Kaia has also been collecting fish for the four.

The four were stuffed after the feedings from both Karl II and Kaia. They will not fledge in rainy weather nor will they fledge when they are so full.

Urmas posted this note on Looduskalender yesterday. It has some information about what will happen once the storklets fledge.

The storklets now have names. Bonus will keep his name. The other three are Voog, Wada, and Iks.

The three storklets of Karl II and Kaia are Voog. This is Voog standing up

Waba is on the perch.

Iks is preening Waba. So there are the three!

Last year Kaia left for her migration on 11 August. These storklets should have fledged last week but they have not. Recent heavy rains have halted this or large feedings. The longer they stay on the nest and eat the stronger they will be.

The storks will travel to the centre of Africa for their migration. Have a look at a map and remember that that they often stop west of Odessa at a nature reserve. What particular issues will they face during migration?

The migration threats to the White Storks of Mlade Buky in the Czech Republic are similar to the ones that Klepetan faced when he migrated back and forth from Croatia to South Africa. He would visit his mate, Malena in Croatia for the breeding period. The person who cared for Malena was particularly concerned with the White Storks passing over Lebanon? S Vokic even wrote to the Prime Minister and President of Lebanon. Do you remember what his concerns were?*

Dad continues to provide fish on the Janakkalan Osprey nest in Finland. I have not seen Titi fly.

He can fly. He just does not know it and he has no mother like Nuppu to encourage him. As such he continues to be a target for predators. It is good to remember that Ospreys talons are for holding fish – getting them out of the water and transporting them – not for fighting. They are too curved inward.

Despite concerns over migration or intruders, the birds on the nests are doing fine. Their health appears good and food is coming in on a regular basis – even at Osoyoos where Olsen brings fish in early on the hottest of days and late in the day. Once the birds fledge they can also cool off in the water. Keep sending them your warmest wishes. Life is getting ready to get difficult as they fly, perfect their flying, and set off on their own course in life.

There is some great news coming out of Yorkshire! More firsts for the UK Osprey population. Fantastic.

Sharon Dunne posted an update on when the Royal Cam chick will be banded. They ran out of time yesterday. Here is the announcement:

The Albatross face particular threats that some of the other migrating birds do not face. QT chick will fledge in September. When she flies off Taiaroa Head she will head out to sea where she will spend 4-6 years before ever returning to land. Then she will return as a juvenile with wobbly legs for a bit partying it up with the others hoping to find a mate for future years. What could happen to these lovely birds on the high seas for all those years?

In the Northern Hemisphere, the lovely sea birds around the UK continue to die from Avian Flu. They thought it was over and it has come back with a fury. Dutch scientist, Thijs Kuken says the solution for future outbreaks is to stop the factory farming of poultry. So far the Ospreys in the UK seem to have not fallen victim to the latest outbreak.

https://theecologist.org/2022/aug/01/avian-flu-outbreak-killing-wild-birds?fbclid=IwAR1erpdLzQUUobsxWqc5oQM5e9hURsLjGxXpP0vVS1Eu7HzmlSDPbLXIc1E

Thank you for joining me today. Remember do your research on threats to our feathered friends due to migration. Think about it. Send me your findings by Thursday of next week. That would be 11 August on the Canadian Prairies. Take care everyone. See you soon!

  • If you said shooting for sport you would be correct.

Thank you to the following for their posts and/or streaming cams where I took my screen captures: SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon, Notre Dame Eagles FB, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Mlade Buky White Storks, and the Osoyoos Osprey nest.

Early Thursday in Bird World

4 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! I was not going to write my newsletter until the end of the day but some of you might wish to know about the banding of the Royal Cam chick. There is a bit of other news as well. Both chicks at the Loch Garten Osprey platform fledged today – so every osprey chick in the UK has now fledged. Fantastic. I am getting notices that the cameras at the SWFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Harriet and M15 and the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Gabby and Samson will go live in two weeks. Wow. Time is speeding by. Those cameras will turn on just about the time we have Osprey and falcon eggs in Australia.

The little fledgling Blue Jay has decided that it is time that I get some more peanuts outside for the three of them! Too funny. These wee ones can be quite loud when they want to be. They are getting their beautiful blue crests. I believe this is the smaller of the three – a little female -. She has that developing crest raised up high because she is excited! They are so cute and so animated.

The NZ DOC rangers will be banding the chicks on Taiaroa Head today. Here is the announcement by Ranger Sharyn Broni posted by Sharon Dunne on the Royal Cam FB page. There is no mention of the time. There will be an archived video of the banding of QT if you miss it!

I know many of you are anxious to also find out about the naming of QT. They may mention how this will be done this year. On line voting took place during the pandemic but this might change now.

Here is the link to the camera:

An Osprey rescue in Scotland that warms our hearts. You might have to keyboard the URL if it doesn’t give you an automatic link. It is the story of the collapse of the Balgavies Osprey nest mentioned a few weeks ago in my blog – this one has pictures!

scottishwildlifetrust.org.uk

The youngest chick on the Janakkalan Nest has yet to fledge. Titi often remains on the nest now that Boris is flying about for longer periods of time. With intruders and goshawks in the area, it is dangerous for Titi not to be flying.

Boris arrives in the bottom image to protect the nest. Hopefully s/he will take care of its sibling.

This brings me back to the mystery of why a normally wonderful Mum on a Finnish Osprey nest would attack her children. Nuppu on nest #4 attacked her youngest who had not fledged and the eldest who had fledged (much less) last week. Humans wondered how this loving mother could turn on her children. One of my readers ‘L’ suggested that it might have been to get the youngest to fly. Nuppu, knowing that a goshawk was in the area, wanted both of her chicks off the nest and flying free to lessen the threat of predation. I spent some time asking several osprey experts if this could be the case and they said, ‘absolutely’. The youngest did not fly and was predated when the intruder came to the nest. The eldest flew. So, there we are – the mystery of the physical attacks was to get the second chick off the nest and flying. Nuppu wanted to save her chicks, not harm them.

The only surviving fledgling on nest #4.

I do not understand why Titi on the Janakkalan nest has not flown yet. S/he has been doing some exercising of the wings. Hopefully soon!!!!! This is the nest without a female so Boris has taken on the job of security when Dad is not around.

The Sydney Sea Eaglets are doing fantastic. The tips of the wing feathers are beginning to show. You can see them coming in on both chicks – look carefully at the wings.

You will notice that the time between feedings is a little longer. That is because the eaglets can eat much more at a sitting than when they had just hatched and needed a few morsels of fish every 45-60 minutes from dawn to dusk.

SE30 even did a little beaking of 29 yesterday. Nothing major but it was cute when it sat up and gave it a bop.

Both had nice crops! Fish will not be stacked on the nest so much now because it could cause predators to become interested in the nest and the eaglets. They are not big enough yet to be out of danger. They need to be 28-30 days old.

It is raining in Orange and Diamond arrives at the scrape box on the water tower soaking wet! But with a full crop. Looking for eggs in a couple of weeks.

The high temperature for the day will be 23 C at the Osoyoos nest. What a change! A nice fish arrived early on the nest and Soo fed both of the chicks. They made it! Olsen and Soo you should receive a reward – you did fantastic in your strategies to protect the two osplets. Just look at them.

Right now the camera is fairly clear at the Fortis Exshaw Osprey nest in Canmore, Alberta. We can get a good look at those three good looking osplets! We are on fledge watch for this nest. At least two are flapping and starting to hover. It will not be long.

Karl II delivered a number of fishes just a few minutes ago to the four Black storklets in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. So far all is well. The storklets are hovering and jumping and practising their perching to prepare for fledge.

A portrait of the three females at the Loch Arkaig nest this year. From left to right: Willow, Sarafina, and Mum Dorcha (unringed). When we talk about the females having beautiful necklaces have a look at these three! Gorgeous.

I am not sure I have ever seen three females with such elaborate necklaces. Dorcha is really influencing the genetics at this nest. Bravo!

A blast from the past. The four Peregrine Falcon eyases being fed at the CBD-367 Collins Street scrape in Melbourne. Time is ticking away. The camera will be up and running in September. Just in case you forgot how incredibly cute little falcons are!!!!

Thank you for joining me this morning. Things look pretty good in Bird World. Take care. See you soon!!!!!!!!!

Thank you to the following for their posts and their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Eagle Club of Estonia, Fortis Exshaw, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Osoyoos Ospreys, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Finnish Osprey Foundation, CBD-367 Collins Street Falcon Cam, and Royal Cam Albatross NZ.

Early Tuesday in Bird World!

2 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It looks like rain here on the Canadian Prairies – and when finally believe it is coming, the sun pops out. I am heading up north to check on the Ospreys along Lake Winnipeg. Fingers crossed! I may only make it as far as the nature centre.

Just some housekeeping. The NCTC streaming cam on Bella and Smitty’s nest has been hit by lightning. It will be replaced in time but not when the eagles are about. Phillipe Josse posted on the Notre Dame Eagles FB that all of the eaglets were seen flying about on 1 August. Great news. Victor Hurley reminds everyone that the CBD (Central Business District) 367 Collins Street Falcons generally lay their eggs around the end of August. The camera at the Boathouse Osprey nest in Maine is on the blink. I just about had a heart attack when I did not see 3 chicks in the nest yesterday when I went to their stream. Thankfully I finally figured out it was ‘Highlights’. Check in the left bottom corner if you go so the same thing does not happen to you. The word ‘Highlights’ will appear. The situation at the #4 nest in Finland where the mother attacked the youngest on the nest and the fledgling when it returned has calmed. No clear understanding of the reason behind the attacks but the youngest seemed to get the blunt of the wrath. No updates on L4 taken into care. Good news. The one surviving osprey from the Pitkin County Trail Platform (they were pulled off the nest by female caught in nesting material) remains in care at a wildlife rehab centre. The chick is now eating on its own and its feathers are growing in. Great news! That incident happened on 22 June.

Olsen delivered a very large fish on the Osoyoos nest at 1137 on 1 August (Monday). It was the 13th fish of the morning. Large and with its head. Soo fed the chicks til they were so full they could not eat another bite and then she took the fish to the perch where she enjoyed it.

Soo and BC and LC know Olsen is arriving.

Look at that nice fish! Olsen must have found a super spot to fish today even with the heat.

Everyone ate and ate.

After taking the fish up to the perch to eat her portion, Soo returned a nice piece to the nest.

There were more than 13 fish arriving at the nest of Soo and Olsen Monday. Another one came in at 18:58.

The chicks have eaten well and have spent much of the day with one or the other hanging their heads over the rim of the nest scaring the wits out of viewers. All is well!

Soo and Olsen got a bit of a break in the weather. It dropped to 33 today but….sadly another heat dome is coming in a week. Olsen has already delivered ​fish small fish at these times: 0521:46, 0533:10, 0541:22, 0620:46, 0625:11. A larger fish with head came at 0656:53 with the 7th fish at 0715:06 which was smaller and headless. If you count that is 7 fish by 0715 Tuesday. Olsen, you are amazing.

The good news at The Campanile is that the bonding rituals between Annie and Alden are increasing…and often they are sans Lindsay and Grinnell Jr. How lovely. Stay safe Annie and Alden!

If you did not see my earlier announcement, L4 was taken into care. He was found on the ground unable to fly during the evening of 31 July. Thank you to those who rescued him and took him to the Swanson Wildlife Clinic at Cornell. No updates so far.

Suzanne Arnold Horning caught Big Red, Arthur, and L2 on the campus Monday evening.

Big Red is moulting.
Arthur on the stacks.
L2 yelling for food.

It is fledge watch at the Black Stork nest of Karl II and Kaia. Yesterday it was raining which halted any thoughts of flying but, this morning the storklets are jumping around and flapping. Bonus is the oldest at 72 days with the other three at 66, 66, and 63 days.

The camera was off for awhile and it is unknown if they had a feeding or not. Yesterday Kaia brought in 1 feeding, Karl II travelled to the fish basket but it was empty because he went further to try and find fish. His transmitter stopped at 10:01 on 1 August. It is not know what the problem is and everyone is waiting not so patiently to see if data is uploaded today or if he appears at the nest with food. Fingers crossed. These are the only four Black Storklets that I am aware of in Estonia this year to survive.

Bonus is 77 days old and is the only surviving storklet of Jan and Janika of the original six.

Andor delivered a fish and Lilibet sure enjoyed it. The top image is the 30th of July.

Lilibet on 30 July 2022.

Then he delivered a fish and no one showed up.

Everyone began to question if Lilibet had left the territory. Lilibet has gone no where! She is around the nest a few minutes ago being quite loud – with what appears to be a nice crop.

Lancer is still calling Two Harbours home and Chase & Cholyn are busy delivering fish. Lancer has earned the name ‘Miss Sassy Pants’ by the Bald Eagle community. She practically tore Chase’s leg off with the delivery. — I am sure Mum and Dad do not mind. She will really be able to stand up for herself when she leaves the safety of the nest area.

The Sydney Sea Eaglets are ‘darling’. Just cute little fluff balls eating and growing. Start watching for the slightest hint of little black dots which are feathers coming in.

It is August and we have another month, perhaps, with Iris at the Hellgate nest in Missoula, Montana. For those unfamiliar, Iris is the oldest unbanded Osprey in the world believed to be 29ish. It is remarkable. Mrs G in the UK is their oldest at 22 years.

Iris spent much time at the nest earlier working and bringing in sticks and she has, on occasion, lately graced us with her beauty. She was there this morning when an intruder arrived. Louis went swiftly over to remove the visitor.

Each of us needs a good rescue story! It gives us faith in ‘humans’.

Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge seems fine. Bonding taking place!

That is a hop, skip, and a jump around the nests this morning. So far everything seems calm. It is a strange time of year. The US Ospreys are eating and preparing for migration at the end of August or beginning of September. We have eaglets in Sydney and we await the arrival of the eggs for Mum and Dad at the barge and the peregrine falcons at CBD and Orange. I do not know about you but I really need a ‘fix’ of little ospreys. Simply cannot wait.

Thank you for joining me today. Please take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures: Montana Osprey Project, Cornell Bird Lab, Osoyoos Ospreys, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Audubon Explore.org, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, and Suzanne Arnold Horning for her lovely pictures of Big Red and family.

Monday Morning in Bird World

1 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone!

Oh, one half of the sky is blue with cottonball-like clouds. The other side is a solid mass of heavy grey clouds. It is 22 C and more rain forecast for 1700. The Crows are already in the bird bath eating their ‘sandwiches’ and peanuts. Given a chance tens of sparrows gather in there after they have left. The squirrels are running about and the birds are flitting in and out. Dyson came to drink out of the bird bath yesterday and all the rabbits have been here. The weather is hot for here and having water out for the animals is, hopefully, helping them to cool down. It is so reassuring – just like when we check on the streaming cams and everyone is home!

The three young Crows are constantly with one another. Their flying is improving. The bird bath water is in constant change for one reason – everything is washed by the Covids. I wonder if it was to soften the shell of the peanut??

One of the fledgling Blue Jays waited its turn until the Crow departed.

This Blue Jay is yelling at Dyson! The squirrels do not wait in line – they just go and grab the peanuts. It is too funny. The juveniles are just getting their crests.

Poor Junior. He is moulting. If you see a Cardinal or Blue Jay looking scarce on top, they are not ill, just replacing their feathers.

Hello Dyson. Thank goodness the new bird bath is heavy enough that Dyson doesn’t go flying when he jumps up for a drink.

Adorable Hedwig. He spent about an hour eating the spilt seeds under the feeder. Hedwig was discovered under the Peony bush. He was such a wee rabbit. He never left the garden but ate the seeds as the birds flitted around him. He is never frightened by them. His burrow is somewhere else now but you can always count on his arrival around 1730 rain or shine, winter or summer. He’s an Eastern Cottontail.

Olsen really seems to have outdone himself on Sunday. As I begin to write this, there are two partial fish sitting on the nest. The chatters have been keeping close tabs and ‘H’ provided detailed time stamps. These are invaluable for viewers coming on line. Much appreciated. By 0900, Olsen had delivered 8 fish of varying sizes. Everyone was chock full of fish. It appears that there was some nibbling on the old fish (gosh they must be like dried fish now!) with another fish delivery at 18:33.

Soo has done a fabulous job keeping the chicks shaded. It is currently 37 C but rose to 40. Or 98.6 F to 104 F.

The nest still has horrific temperatures tomorrow. They seem to just keep adding on an additional day of heat. When did I ever believe I would say that 34 C was a welcome drop in temperature? The night will be welcome cooling off periods. The Osprey parents are doing the best they can and thank goodness those two chicks are feathered nicely this year.

Send positive thoughts, please. Soo and Olsen deserve success. In 2020 they lost a chick and one fell out of the nest and in 2021 the three died in the heat dome that stayed over the area. This year we have had one fall over the nest so let us keep fingers crossed. I think Soo and Olsen will succeed this year.

It is now Monday morning and Olsen has already brought at least five fish according to the chatters and here he is at 0656 feeding his babies fish number six!

I do not know if you have read the history of this nest but it is one of those great cooperative measures. FortisBC worked with the Town of Osoyoos put up a separate de-commissioned hydro pole for the Osprey and also donated the funds for the camera – the nest and streaming cam you are watching. They were proactive – indeed, it is in their best interests not to have the local power knocked out but, grateful, so grateful.

It is cooler at the Fortis Exshaw Nest in Canmore, Alberta. Mum and the trio are doing very well it seems.

Because it is in the same heat warning area, I have been checking on and off at the McEuen Park Osprey platform in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho.

There were two of the fledglings on the nest when I popped in.

With all the heat warnings, it is nice to have something to laugh at and it is provided by Bukacek and the adult only nest. You might well remember that Bukacek had built a second nest for him and Betty. Having four large White storklets on the natal nest gets a little crowded. Now that the storklets are flying – they have taken over the new nest! Bukacek will have to build another!!!!!! Betty meanwhile lures them back to their own nest with food. Perfect. Ooops….they ate and left. Oh, goodness.

Beautiful Betty.

There has been some concern about a blood spot near the wing of SE30 on the Sydney Sea Eagles nest. What was the cause? Often the eaglets get fish blood or bird parts on their body but this does not seem to be that. It looks instead as if some feathers have clumped together either with fish juice or ps and they were, perhaps, pulling and it annoyed the eaglet who pulled them out and left a small bloody spot. The eaglet appears to be fine.

You can clearly see the spot on the right wing- and that enormous crop of SE29’s. 30 is eating well. No worries. Lady sometimes feeds it so much that 29 gets itself in a little knot. With the amount of prey coming on the nest there is no need for food competition – and even with feedings spreading a bit, everything should be fine. The eaglets are getting older. Getting ready to get some really itchy pin feathers soon. As long as food continues and Lady keeps up her remarkable feeding schedule..these two are going to grow and fledge.

There will not be any ringing or DNA tests unless one or both wind up in rehab after fledge. But I might be already inclined to guess that we have a really big sister in 29 and a little brother in 30.

We can always use good news in our lives. Here is another story of an eagle rescue that will warm your hearts! Thanks, ‘L’, much appreciated.

Our beautiful Victor. I love this photo of him standing on a low perch. You are progressing, Victor. Keep up the good work!

Since the rescue of Victor, some of us have been more than perplexed about where the zinc came from that poisoned his body. I have rattled my brain with several of you – flakes coming off of anything galvanized, warnings on garden hoses about zinc, the shale in the area contains zinc, etc. I really do not think our dear Victor sat and ate pennies knowingly. ‘C’ sent me the findings of a study by a Brazilian researcher. It has been translated by Google from the Portugese. If you are interested in how Victor might have gotten the zinc and how our contamination of the planet spreads to birds 10,000 miles away even…have a read.

Thank you, ‘C’. Much appreciated.

Title: “Not even the “end of the world” is free from human-caused pollution”

Animals that live in the waters of the Kerguelen archipelago, 3,000 km from the nearest inhabited region, are contaminated by metals such as cadmium and mercury.

Not even the “end of the world” is free from the pollution generated by humanity. Located in the south of the Indian Ocean, 3,300 km from Madagascar, the nearest inhabited region, the Kerguelen archipelago, formed by about 300 islands and islets, is contaminated by metals such as cadmium and mercury, copper and zinc. The observation is made by Brazilian researcher Caio Vinicius Cipro, a postdoctoral fellow at the Oceanographic Institute of the University of São Paulo (IO-USP), in two studies he carried out at the University of La Rochelle, in France, in partnership with scientists there.

Of volcanic origin, Kerguelen is 4 thousand kilometers south of India and 2 thousand kilometers north of Antarctica. The archipelago belongs to that country and is administratively part of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF). There is currently a scientific station and structures associated with it. “There is also fishing activity due to France’s exclusive economic exploitation zone”, says Cipro. “Biologically, there are countless species of birds and marine mammals that have established colonies on the island and many others, in addition to significant amounts of fish and invertebrates thanks to the high primary productivity of local food. There are also several species introduced by humans, such as mice and reindeer, and some plants.”

He says that the idea for the study came during a period when he worked as a guest researcher at the University of La Rochelle. “My supervisor at the time, Professor Paco Bustamante, had told me about a dataset he had obtained years before, which he began working on during his own doctorate, and whose publication he never had time to pursue,” he says. “I volunteered to carry out the task and write the publication.”

Cipro then went on to study the occurrence of four chemical elements (cadmium, copper, mercury, zinc and selenium) in more than 30 species of invertebrates and fish, most of them at a lower trophic level (of the food chain). The objective was to understand how the concentrations of these inorganic pollutants behave at these lower levels that will influence organisms above them in the food chain.

Cipro’s first study was carried out in 2014, shortly after he arrived in France, on samples that had been collected by Bustamante’s team in the southern summers of 1997 and 1998. The Brazilian scientist analyzed metal contamination in a species of bird, the black shearwater petrel (Procellaria aequinoctialis). “We found contamination by cadmium, copper, mercury, selenium and zinc”, he says. “An article about the work was published in 2016 in the scientific journal Polar Biology.”

The second research was carried out in 2018 and yielded another article, published in the same journal. “In this case, we analyzed the levels of contamination of the same metals, with the exception of selenium – there were no conditions at the time to do this with this element in the laboratory at the University of La Rochelle – in 18 species of fish and 11 of invertebrates”, explains Cipro . The result of the work also pointed to the contamination of animals by metals.

According to Cipro, what can be concluded from the results of his research is that in this specific case of Kerguelen, cadmium values ​​varied much more than mercury values ​​(four orders of magnitude against one) and depended more on specificity in food ecology. and in the habitat than at the level of the food chain plain and simple.

In other words, the results of the studies showed that, contrary to what happens in most cases, the concentrations of pollutants found in animals depended little on their position in the food chain, but more on specific mechanisms of physiology and exposure, in such a way that predators from lower trophic levels could be more subject to some contaminants than others from higher positions.

This means, according to Cipro, that work with species of higher trophic level or sentinels needs more in-depth food ecology studies before reaching certain conclusions and that the food chain by itself does not mean much in this environment. “Furthermore, my research provides solid foundations on the exposure to which predators are subject, as in most cases this discussion remained on hypothetical terrain due to lack of field data,” he explains.

The work also showed a possible influence of a local secondary source of contaminants, probably the bird colonies themselves, a hypothesis confirmed in the Antarctic environment during his current research project. Going into more detail, Cipro explains that the analyzed metals have natural sources, but human activity certainly plays a bigger role than them in general. For mercury, for example, current emissions are estimated to be three to five times higher than before the industrial age. This element can reach the Kerguelen archipelago from dumps made by factories located 10,000 kilometers away.

Nevertheless, locally, in addition to bird colonies, some other natural sources may be significant, such as certain rocks and fossil fuels. “In the case of bird colonies, some studies that I proposed suggested and later confirmed their role as a local and relevant source of some elements and also of organic pollutants”, says Cipro. “In Kerguelen, we raised this hypothesis, comparing mussels from inside and outside the Gulf of Morbihan, and it seemed to be confirmed by the results obtained.”

The Dad at the Janakkalan Nest, Red CCL, continues to deliver the fish. The chatters have nicknamed the pair. Boris is the oldest and Titi is the youngest. The fish are so big that they take turns with no need to squabble. Titi is on the left. He has not figured out – yet – to hold the fish down with its talons.

Dad arrives with another fish at 1805. Titi is in the back with the huge crop from eating the fish in the image above. Boris is going to claim this one and Titi is absolutely too full to care! Lovely. Thanks, Dad.

The four Black Storklets on the nest of Karl II and Kaia are really wanting a food delivery. While they wait it is raining – they shake off their feathers, flap about, and jump on and off the perch. Kaia arrives with food at 16:58, the last image.

Just look at this beautiful juvenile Red-tail Hawk, L4. Stunning. L2 and L4 will probably be soaring in the thermals soon and leaving the Campus. Every moment with them is special as it is with Big Red and Arthur.

The latest update on L3 from the Cornell Lab:

L3 is gorgeous. Looking forward to her release when she is all healed.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is wonderful to have such good news in Bird World. To my knowledge, all of the UK Ospreys have fledged. They will be eating and gaining weight as will their mothers for migration. Soon these flights will be charted. In the meantime continue to enjoy them. The same with the storks! Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, websites, and postings where I took my screen captures: Osoyoos Ospreys, McEuen Park, Coeur d’Elene, Idaho, Sydney Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Cornell Bird Lab, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Mlade Buky Storks, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Ojai Raptor Centre, and Fortis Exshaw.

Early Wednesday in Bird World

27 July 2022

I am starting to write tomorrow’s blog on the evening of the 26th because there is good news at Osoyoos. It is a lovely evening on the Canadian Prairies. It is nearly 2100 and the garden animals have departed to their sleeping quarters. I would love to know where they go. It is cooler here, we have had lots of rain and the hot weather seems to have passed – for now. The clouds, however, are coming and looking strange and you can hear thunder in the distance.

It was certainly a relief to go onto the Osoyoos Osprey cam and see the time stamps that ‘A-M’ had listed for the fish deliveries by Olsen. Fish at 0510, 0524, o554, 0616, 0943, 1103 and 1633. Apparently all of the fish were a good size but the first one. This is fantastic. It just seems unthinkable that anything could cause these two beautiful osplets not to fledge.

It was also a good evening because Ferris Akel was on the Cornell campus in Ithaca looking for Big Red and her family.

Big Red looks as if she is beginning to moult. L2 has a much whiter than L4 but in these images it is truly hard to tell which juvenile is which. What is important is that all are safe and sound.

One of our readers, ‘J’ has written about the Sydney Sea Eagles SE30 and its attacks on SE29 when the two are alone on the nest. Yes, it is true that is happening and yes, 30 does, at some feedings, become submissive to the older sibling which is larger.

I remember when I began watching the Sea eagles. One of the moderators at the time told me that typically the second egg is the ‘insurance ‘ egg. It is only there if something should happen to the first hatch. Of course, I was horrified. At the time I had not had any experience with some of the other eagle species where the eldest hatch always kills the youngest. In some instances, the age difference impacts this even though there is lots of food on the nest. In other instances, it is simply ‘standard practice’ for the eldest to kill the youngest. This is known as obligate siblicide. I want to be clear. I am not saying this is what is happening at the Sydney Sea Eagle nest in 2022.

At the Sydney Sea Eagle nest there has been plenty of fish so far this year. The chicks hatched relatively close together and, observations over the past five years show that there has always been some initial competition on this nest;; once this resulted in siblicide. In fact, sibling rivalry with SE23 began on day 5 in 2019. The rivalry ended in week 6. In 2018, there was also sibling rivalry with SE21 becoming dominant often pecking 22 who would retreat in submission. That rivalry period lessened after 3 weeks. Sadly, there was a period of 6 days when the male did not bring any food to the nest. The female hunted but the prey was so much less and SE22 was constantly attacked, becoming weaker and finally dying on day 33. In 2019, 2020 and in 2021 both eggs hatched each year and both chicks fledged. So the last time there was siblicide on this nest was 2018 and that was the result of 6 days when the male did not bring food.

For those constantly watching the Sea Eagles nest, just take a deep breath. Hope for continued good prey deliveries and wait. There is a strict no intervention policy at the nest (or there has been in the past) and I have no reason to believe that this has changed. Wishing it to be so will only cause personal angst and frustration. If things get bad, this is what I suggest – take a three day break. Then go in and check on the nest and see how the younger one is doing.

Whenever individuals – and we all have – worried about dominance competition, I like to go back and look at one of the videos from the SW Florida Bald Eagle nest. In particular, one of E19 and E20 who, at the end, were the best of friends. The year prior, many will remember E17 having to go to ‘time out’ at the CROW clinic when it was so aggressive to E18. They were inseparable twins when they fledged.

Here is the announcement for the discussion with Christian Sasse and those wonderful folks from GROWLS. Please note the time in the posting below. This will take place on YouTube.

For those of you that love those UK Osprey nests, take note. I was reminded by my calendar and friends in Wales that the countdown to migration has started…by 4 weeks from today, the females should have or be departing, followed by the fledglings and finally the males. So enjoy them while you can!

Just a few images from the UK nests this morning.

Idris and Telyn by the Dyfi River
Idris, Telyn, and one of the fledglings hanging out by the river with the cows.
Idris at Dyfi
Aran with one of the boys from 2022 at Glaslyn
Aran on the perch, Mrs G and kids on nest
Mrs G and three in nest
Dylan at Llyn Clywedog
Dorcha with Willow and Sarafina at Loch Arkaig

Of course, migration begins in North America also. If you want to keep track of North American migration in the east, there is no better place to go to see the numbers than Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania. What is Hawk Mountain? Founded in 1934 by Rosalie Edge, Hawk Mountain became a sanctuary for migrating birds – not a killing club. Edge initially purchased 1400 acres of land which has now been extended to 2600. The thermals over the mountains are perfect for the migrating birds to soar. You can visit the centre and even take part in the great migration count or you can watch the numbers increase from August to mid-December. Here is the link to the chart for the Hawk Mountain fall migration count.

https://www.hawkmountain.org/conservation-science/hawk-count

If you are wondering about the drama playing out at the Whirley Crane in SF Bay home to Rosie and Richmond, here is the latest news. Please not that Brooks has come to the nest at least once but was chased away by the visitor.

The day has started early in Osoyoos with Soo feeding a small fish to the two chicks and herself. Hoping for lots and lots of early fish today as those temperatures are set to soar in the afternoon.

Those two are growing and they are so cute….wish for fish everyone!

There is sad news coming out of Estonia. The camera at the nest of Eedie had gone down. One of Jan and Janika’s chicks had been fostered there. Urmas has just announced that all four of the Black Storklets have been predated. This is a terrible loss. Of the three nests, Eedie, Jan and Janika, and Karl II and Kaia – only 4 storklets survive. The four in the images below will now have to fledge and then survive flying through the Ukrainian War zone and other dangerous places to reach Africa during the fall migration.

At the Karula National Forest nest of Karl II and Kaia, there is good news. Karl II did find the second fish basket that Urmas set up for him. This is wonderful as the feedings had been getting quite lean. Here is Karl arriving with a feeding for the four. Now, Bonus, the foster chick on this nest is the only surviving storklet of Jan and Janika.

One of the chicks at the Janakkalan Osprey nest in Finland is really getting some height to their hovering. Expect a fledge soon! It is so exciting. So much has happened on this nest – illness and presumed death of the Mum and starvation death of a sibling, an intruder – that we shall really celebrate when these two surviving youngsters fledge.

One last check this morning and that is at the Boathouse. The dancing diamonds from the sunrise make it nearly impossible to see what is happening on the nest but…it looks as if one of the chicks of Dory and Skiff is trying self-feeding! Oh, fantastic.

Thank you so very much for joining me this morning. Keep sending your best wishes to Osoyoos for fish deliveries today as those temperatures climb to 41 C or 102.5 F. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams, videos, and/or FB posts where I took my screen captures: Osoyoos Ospreys, Ferris Akel Tours, Audubon Explore.org, Sydney Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, CarnyXWild, Eagle Club of Estonia, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Lady Hawk, SF Osprey Cam with Richmond and Rosie, and Bald Eagles 101.

Victor is standing, Malala chasing Mum,Lady gives a great feeding, and happiness when there is fish

22 July 2022

Thank you to everyone who sent a note saying that they are ‘fed up’ with the electrocutions and want to help. It is much appreciated. People underestimate their own power. Send those-mails to BC Hydro.

But it is Friday evening and it is time for some good news.

First up is Victor. Victor is able to stand without assistance! and flap his wings…and joy oh joy.

Here is Victor talking and flapping his wings! Tears. Get the tissues out now! And if you can afford it, please help with Victor’s medical bills. Ridding a raptor of metal toxicity is very expensive.

Second, if you have wondered about Malala, you can see her chasing Mum behind the nest tree in the 35 second video clip below. Watch carefully. They will fly from left to right near the bottom. Malala has also been seen on the top branches of the nest and the adults still bring prey to the nest.

Malala later came to the nest to eat the fish brought earlier. Oh, was she hungry. And this is my point about Little Bit ND17. Some raptor parents only feed on the nest. It would be good to see Little Bit get some prey!

There is nothing nicer than seeing a nest full of fish – and I do mean full! Dad struck gold in his fishing and has left Lady a pile of nice fish for Lady and for SE 29 and 30. Watch carefully. SE30 can be a little stinker pecking its big sibling. Not a smart thing to do, 30.

The intervention is now in his 23rd day at the Karula National Forest nest of Karl II and Kaia. Bonus is doing great and the family is doing very well. Karl II did 3 feedings today and Kaia did 2 for a total of 5. In one Karl II brought in lots of nice fish! So proud of Urmas and Dr Madis giving Bonus a second chance at life.

Earlier Bonus in the front at the left is casting a pellet. Pellets are compressed food items that cannot be digested by the stomach and are thrown out (cast). You can see the pellet. It looks like a barbecue briquette. Researchers study the pellets to tell them what the birds have been eating!

Gosh, it is lonely turning on a streaming cam and seeing an empty nest. It is even more frustrating to find that you have checked 18 odd times with no fledglings and you missed them by 20 seconds! The oldest fledgling on the Mispillion Harbour Osprey nest paid a visit today. Thanks, ‘H’ for the identification. The fledgling looks well and must see parents somewhere close as it is madly prey calling.

There were 3 fish brought to the Osoyoos Nest this morning. One small one and two good size ones. Those deliveries came at 0452, 0530, and 0754. Thank you for the time stamps, Burky 4. I need to go and check to see if anything came after – and no, I do not see any other fish. Olsen is smart to do the fishing early with the continuing heat wave in the region. Hopefully something will come during the evening.

It has been a good day on the nests. We must celebrate every possible minute because we know how quickly something can happen. Thank you so much for being with me today. Please take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their FB postings and/or videos or streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Ojai Raptor Rehabilitation Centre, GROWLS, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Osoyoos Osprey Cam, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Mispillion Harbour Ospreys and the DDNR.

Life and Death in Bird World…

18 July 2022

We are going to start off with the good news…a hatch! Sydney’s Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre is giving the official hatch time of WBSE 29 at 1426. There is also a pip in WBSE30’s egg.

Beautiful Lady. By the time we wake up tomorrow morning there should be two healthy White-bellied Sea Eaglets in this nest getting ready to bop and bob.

I thought I might make it through Sunday evening without finding out about another Osprey death. Not so. A much loved male Osprey of a long time mated pair in Bitterroot Valley, Montana was shot with a soft bullet and died. Local animal right’s activists have issued a reward for the identity of the shooter.

Shootings of protected raptors are on the rise in the area. There were 7 last year and already there are 5 this year in this single area of Montana. Reports from wildlife rehab clinics often cite either shootings or – heavy lead toxins due to the eating of prey with bullet fragments – as the major reason for eagles to be in care or dying.

It is, of course, illegal to shoot a protected species but, it doesn’t seem to matter. It has happened in my City, all over the US, in various countries in the EU such as France and Malta. And, of course, there are the ongoing issues in the UK on the private estates where grouse hunting is permitted.

https://mtstandard.com/news/state-and-regional/bitterroot-osprey-shooting-leaves-activists-looking-for-answers/article_fe7ff6c8-f90b-535f-98b6-9a3826e123ee.html?fbclid=IwAR3qVHQb8gMmqRYhFw6CQZX24PHNfYuaFMh57p_EOndiZBTT7NLxDI5dwno


There is good news coming out of the Osoyoos nest. One look at the image reveals the remains of a large fish still on the nest. ‘A-M’ mentioned on the chat that both chicks had eaten well today and Little Bob even had a really full crop. Apparently both parents brought in 2 big fish. It is wonderful to see Mum with a big crop, too. Oh, we could not ask for anything better coming out of the heat in the area. Fantastic.

With all the sadness, the fact that this nest got 2 great big fish and everyone is full and there is still fish is something to celebrate. I wanted fish to fall from the sky but coming in from the lake is just as good.

To also put a smile on your face, Lilibet at the Fraser Point nest of Andor and Mama Cruz had something to say to the fox cub that keeps getting on her nest! And she was very vocal about it.

There is other good news. The youngest osplet of the trio at Llyn Clywedog fledged at 10:22 on Sunday the 17th. Congratulations Dylan and Seren for another successful year and to all those at Llyn Clywedog in Wales.

Seren on one perch and two of the fledglings on the other perch.

The two osplets on the Llyn Brenig nest in Wales have not fledged. They certainly have grown since I last checked on them! Mom looks happy and I bet that fish Dad brought in really tasted good.

Dorcha looking over her two osplets as the sun was setting on Loch Arkaig.

and dawn over Loch Arkaig. I has been impossible to tell how Dorcha is doing. Hopefully she will go for a good swim and get the blood off from her injury – continuing good thoughts for her to heal quickly.

The area is so beautiful.

The Glaslyn Valley nest of Aran and Mrs G is so very different than Loch Arkaig and Loch of the Lowes. The cows and the sheep make the entire scene look like it could be a 17th century painting.

At the Loch of the Lowes, one of the fledglings slept ‘adult style’ on the nest perch all night. There is another (or two?) osprey/s on the dead tree at centre left. Where is everyone else? Laddie? Blue NC0?

Later. Waiting for a delivery!

Dad delivers fish to the Janakkdan Osprey nest on a regular basis. Here is the last delivery for the 17th at 19:28. The osplets will take turns self-feeding.

I have not seen the female on the nest for some hours – from 1900 to 0700. The chicks have not fledged. Some on the chat questioned if she has begun her migration. No, it is too early. Let us hope that she is well.

It is possible there is a perch and Mum is there. She was on the nest at noon today. Both chicks appear to be capable of eating on their own. One better than the other but it has had more practice.

‘H’ reports that it is Smooth Dogfish Shark for breakfast at the Mispillion Harbour Osprey nest! Dad brought in two in quick succession. Everyone was hungry – one fledgling trying to self-feed and the other being fed by Mum who eventually feeds both.

While the ospreys in Delaware were enjoying their Smooth Dogfish Sharks, Karl II was delivering large fish to the Karula National Forest Black storkling nest – that includes Bonus, the adopted storklet of Jan and Janikka. I am so happy that the four are doing so well and so grateful to Urmas for his fish basket! Thank you, Urmas.

The camera was down at Glacier Gardens for part of the 17th. NitBot reports that there were four fish deliveries with Peace getting 1 fish and Love seeming to get the other 3. It is so hard to see the eaglets – is it condensation on the camera? and the cars racing up and down that road are making me nervous. But…Liberty and Freedom know best!

There is no word yet on what caused the 9 day old osplet of Tom and Audrey at the Chesapeake Conservancy to suddenly die. Will keep you posted on any news. Its death was entirely unexpected. There was lots of fish and it was eating well.

Everything seems to be fine for Dory and Skiff and their three osplets on Hog Island in Maine.

Here is a short video of Dory feeding the three just a short while ago.

Like everywhere else, it has been hot and stormy on the Canadian Prairies. If you are in an area of high heat and have shallow bowls (no deeper than 2 or 3 inches), put some water in them if you do not have a bird bath. All manner of raptor are coming to cool down including the local crows and owls – even the rabbits have been in to drink water and get in the shade of the lilacs and ‘the bush tunnels’. I will try to get a photo if I can but Mr Crow was on top of the sunroom/greenhouse this morning telling me that he wanted breakfast!

An osprey expert in the UK told me that never rule out dehydration in the death of Ospreys. He was talking about Molate. But, remember that all of the birds can suffer in the heat without water!

The image below is (I believe) Hedwig’s baby. It is really cropped and blown up – the rabbit is tiny. Those are dandelion leaves and they are not long. He thought he was hiding behind some of the builder’s garbage! But we saw you, cutie pie. Caught in the act. You can eat all of the dandelion leaves you want!

This is Hedwig the Elder over eating the seeds that the birds spill everywhere! What they are really enjoying are the tender shoots.

Bye Hedwig!

Hedwig and Little Hedwig took off together to go to their burrow which is across the back lane underneath a garage.

It has been a week since Victor was rescued. I have not seen an update but it is early in California. Looking forward to some news. Things are rather quiet in Bird World — and goodness, gosh, golly…quiet is welcome. There will be more fledges in the UK and another baby Sea Eagle tomorrow. Something to look forward to….

Thank you for being with me today. Take care Everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Sydney Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Osoyoos Ospreys, Explore.org and IWS, CarnyXwild, Llyn Brenig Ospreys, Friends of Loch Arkaig, People’s Postcode Lottery, and the Wildlife Trust, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Friends of Loch of the Lowes, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Mispillion Harbour Ospreys and the DDNR, Eagle Club of Estonia, Glacier Gardens, Chesapeake Conservancy, and Explore.org and Audubon.

Ervie fishes with Dad, Fledge at Mispillion, and more

12 July 2022

Ervie. Bazza Hockaday caught Ervie fishing with Dad! He posted images of the two of them together on the FB Page of the Port Lincoln Osprey Group. Now, how wonderful is that? I am so excited. Ervie can fish with dad and not feel so rejected..he just can’t go on the nest near Mum! Remember how Ervie and Dad used to sit in the ‘shed’ and chat? Seriously, tears of joy!

Dad above and Ervie below with the tracker.

@ Port Lincoln Ospreys and Bazza Hockaday. 10 July 2022

The newsletter that I get from the Cornell Bird Lab is carrying an article on neonics, a pesticide, that is having a deadly impact on our songbirds. Have a read. Also consider, however, the fact that the ‘Green’ herbicides and pesticides used on lawns are toxic. Take, for example, the neighbour who wants the weeds killed so that they can put down a matt and then put on wood mulch — the ‘Green’ spray was toxic — it killed the weeds. They did not know that they could simply use vinegar.

The three Ls (L3 is in care) are flying as almost as good as Big Red and Arthur. They are learning more and more about catching their own prey and in 2-4 weeks they will leave the territory of Big Red and Arthur and find their own place in the world of hawks. So thankful for Suzanne Arnold Horning who takes her camera to the campus each day and allows me to share her images of Big Red and Arthur’s family with you.

One of the Ls hunting in the pine trees. Big Red and Arthur have been moving them around to various parts of the campus for prey drops and hunting. Everything they do are lessons for the kids -. Once the Ls leave the territory, Big Red and Arthur are going to enjoy a much needed rest. We will then see them back on the nest checking things in the late fall or early November. Time definitely passes too quickly!

L4 – we worried and worried and it turns out he loved to climb over his siblings to get to Big Red’s beak – totally unafraid – and was one of the first two to catch prey and become an official juvenile. Here he is on top of a small shed stalking something and stretching.

L4 – cutie pie.

Ferris Akel just uploaded his tour of the Red-tail hawks at Cornell from last weekend. Here you go!

The storklets on the Mlade Buky nest of Bukacek and Betty are big! No wonder Bukacek was working on a second nest. No room for him and Betty!

Urmas and Dr Madis V’s experiment to raise the storklets of Jan and Janika continues to go very smoothly. Karl II has brought food in. Bonus watches the others and begins the same ritual to cause Karl II to be able to regurgitate the fish. Everyone looks nice and healthy on this nest and we know from the postings that both Karl II and Kaia have found the fish basket left for them by Urmas.

The storklets are losing their white natal down and those lovely black feathers are coming in. Bonus is in the front with the two metal rings.

At 13:30 ‘H’ reports that one of the ospreys on the Mispillion Harbour nest fledged. It was a beautiful first flight returning in about a minute and a half. Congratulations to everyone and to you ‘H’ who has watched this nest like a wonderful auntie and kept us informed. Now…when will the next one fledge?

There he goes!

Louis and Dorcha’s two osplets are being ringed at Loch Arkaig at this very moment! There is the proud mama Dorcha with the two before the banders arrived. Dorcha flew around at the arrival of the humans and her and Louis are now perched on a tree waiting for everything to be finished so they can get their chicks back! Will there be one big girl??? and a boy?

The camera is turned off and will come back on line when the ringers are finished.

The chicks of Louis and Dorcha have been ringed but no word about gender, weight, etc. Will post tomorrow when I hear.

Fledgling 554 is enjoying her freedom as she stares at us from the perch at the Llyn Clywedog Osprey nest of Dylan and Seren. 554 was the first osprey to fledge in Wales for the 2022 season – yesterday.

554’s other siblings are flapping their wings now, too….will there be a rush on fledging?

Idris has brought in 3 fish in three hours. Those three big girls will each have their own fish at the Dyfi Nest this evening.

It was a gorgeous day in the Glaslyn Valley. Mrs G looking over her nest full of osplets no doubt so happy that this season went superbly.

Since last year many of us have wondered what the fate of CJ7 would be. Would Blue 022 return? would they bond? would they have chicks? They did bond, they did have chicks….the nest was so deep that we could only get a glimpse of them. Now, here they are staring at us. Just gorgeous osplets. Congratulations – you two are famous. Right, you don’t care. Just clean up the environment so that Ospreys can have lots of non-toxic delicious fish, clean air, safe migration, and wonderful nests. Oh, right..and stop the shooting of Ospreys. Gotcha. We are gonna work on that.

Dory watches over three sleeping little ones on the Boathouse Osprey nest on Hog Island. Just look at how well their plumage camouflages them and how much copper/orange they are getting on the nape of their necks. So lovely and content.

Meanwhile, in California, Rosie continues to supply Brooks and Molate with goldfish. This is number 8!

To the delight of everyone Annie and Alden continue to pair bond in the scrape at The Campanile every other day it seems. This was yesterday.

If you missed it, Mama Thunder made quick work of that juvenile intruder yesterday. Here is a 40 second clip of the action at the West End Bald Eagle nest:

Lillibet wondering where Victor is in the middle of the night at the Fraser Point nest of Andor and Mama Cruz.

It is going to take a few days for the blood work to come back on Victor and for all other tests to determine what is causing him to lose his balance and not be able to fly. Here is an edited post by Dr Sharpe.

Thank you so much for joining me today. Both Little Bit 17 and Victor are getting fantastic care and as someone joked – “There will be a run on Costco trout, I want to eat what Victor is having!” Cute. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam and/or FB pages or blogs where I took my screen captures: Suzanne Arnold Horning, Ferris Akel Tours, Mlade Buky Storks, Eagle Club of Estonia, Mispillion Harbour Ospreys, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, CarnyXWild, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Poole Harbour Ospreys, Audubon Explore.org, SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon, Cal Falcons, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Bazza Hockaday, Explore.org and The Institute for Wildlife Studies.