Ervie, Indigo…and more news in Bird World on Sunday

13 November 2022

Good Morning Everyone.

Saturday was one of those quiet stay-at-home days. It gave me a chance to think of the ways that those of us who live in wintery climates cope with the weather. As it is, the sow is dancing down right now. The European Starlings are eating suet and Butter Bark and Mr Crow cawed so much that I gave him high protein kitten kibble. Oops. The Starlings have found the kibble!

Inside the house, the candle holders have been cleaned and given new candles. An apple crisp is in the oven. So, instead of starting out birds today, we will begin with something simple to make your house cosy on a crisp day. Put 1 sliced orange and 1 sliced lemon in a 2 litre (qt) pot. Leave the peel on – that is where the lovely oils are. Add a few bay leaves, 2 or 3 cinnamon sticks, a good tablespoon of cloves, and cover the whole with water. Bring to a boil then lower the heat and let it simmer. You can add water as needed. I used to add tea bags to the brew. It is a lovely spiced tea but needs some straining. The other thing you can do is to take the peels of your oranges and lemons and use them. I always have bags in the freezer! It is part of a strategy to have zero waste.

Making News:

Our darling Ernie. Poster child of handsome beginning to do some moulting.

For the very first time successful fledges at Maine’s Hog Island Boathouse Osprey platform. Dory and Skiff are making the news! Congratulations to this Osprey couple who successfully fledged three osplets from the Hog Island Osprey platform this year. What an amazing family this was to watch.

Oh, so very grateful to Cilla Kinross for finding Indigo and showing us how this handsome lad is doing after fledging. Isn’t he a stunner?

Tweed Valley fledged three ospreys this year. Two of them have perished. The other, Glen, found himself on a couple of container ships before finally making it to Spain! Here is the latest on this youngster.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-south-scotland-63584969?fbclid=IwAR1vsE2ErGcB71e711Z9k01Xt4GWUC4PDPCn03KH3yCzRLdl3MECQnPSDz8

In the Mailbox:

‘EJ’ sent me some grand news. It is amazing what we can do when we get together to help benefit the environment and wildlife. A community joined together and raised 2.2 Million GPB to purchase a tract of land to enlarge a nature reserve. Just think – this could be a way of halting development in areas that are needed by the wildlife. Is there land where you live that is adjacent to a nature reserve that could benefit from such an endeavour? Keep this positive action in mind if ever you get a chance to work with your community.

File:The Ewes Water Valley – geograph.org.uk – 1538379.jpg” by James T M Towill is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.

You can read about this successful project here:

https://www.scotsman.com/heritage-and-retro/heritage/langholm-moor-ps22-million-raised-to-complete-community-buyout-3793764

Australian Nests:

All eyes are on Port Lincoln. Ian Falkenberg was up at midnight finishing up the permit forms – that myriad of red tape that Port Lincoln has to do in order to ring the osplets on the nests. Fran and Bazza said that he was up again at 0600 getting ready. So, today, Big, whether you like it or not you will be weighed, measured, hopefully a sample of your blood is taken for DNA, and you will be given a sat pak. Big, we all know that you are one big cranky girl that won’t let any bird get in your way. You are now the only hope of Port Lincoln for 2022 – you carry a heavy responsibility. Please do not ever land on a hydro pole no matter how much you might want to.

Ian Falkenberg has made the call to postpone putting the tracker and ringing until later today or tomorrow. This cannot be done in wet weather. In addition, it really is now or never. In the UK, birds are not banded after 45 days because of the great fear of scaring them off the platforms and fledging early.

Mum and her ‘Big’ Girl crying out to Dad.

Dad brought a fish in around 0815. Big kind of rushed Mum once she had the fish. Mum got the catch anchored to her talon and flew around the nest arriving on the other side where she had control of the fish. It was headless so Dad has his share, too. Mum and Big had a nice chunk.

A small headless fish arrived around 1515.

The rain began. Mum and Dad had been perched together. Mum flew over to the nest to Big and Dad joined them at 19:44.

It appears that three of the Melbourne Four have now fledged. One remains at night and some of the others show up on the ledge for prey deliveries.

At Orange, Rubus is shedding many of the dandelions and is watching for Xavier and Diamond to deliver prey. They do not disappoint. Here was yesterdays recap from the moderators: RECAP 10 41 15 D w/ prey, Rubus takes; 11 25 12 X w/prey, D arrives/feeds: 13:31:22 X w/juv star, feeds, X takes: 16:30:10 X w/prey, feeds 18 53 31 Xw/prey, Rubus takes, D arrives , tug o war, D feeds.

There was a tug o war and lots of excitement. Just look at how much of the baby fluff is now gone.

Other Bird News:

One of the things that changes for me – during the winter – is that I do not travel on the roads as much nor do I go to the nature centre 5 days a week for a walk. Saturdays become very quiet and one of the joys is having Ferris Akel in the background doing his live stream around Wildlife Drive, Montezuma, Sapsucker Woods, and Ithaca, New York. We have a few ducks still in the City and a few geese were flying overhead this evening. Someone even has a Baltimore Oriole in their garden today – with the snow! I am, however, having duck withdrawal and Ferris does seem to find them this time of year! I really recommend Ferris Akel’s tours on Saturdays beginning about noon Eastern time. Ferris is humble always saying he doesn’t know this or that but, he does. I have learned so much for him. In fact his tour is often on in the background to whatever else I am doing. You can also check out some of the archived tours of Ferris by going to YouTube and entering Ferris Akel Live.

‘A’ said that she had learned to embrace ‘brown’ never realising that there are so many shades and hues. Fantastic! That brings me great joy. Most of the female birds are considered dull compared to the flamboyant colours of some of the male species. Here is a female Ruddy Duck. Just look at all those wonderful browns and tans, there is a touch of caramel and espresso, and that lovely sort of grey-brown.

All of the birds are at a great distance from where Ferris is streaming. The images are then quite soft. Nonetheless, I hope that you enjoy the few that I am including.

Just a slightly different angle.

A female Shoveler. You can never mistake a Shoveler for a Mallard. Just look at that bill. It is massive in comparison to the size of the head.

There were American Coots and I know that none of us will ever make the mistake of saying a Coot is a duck. It isn’t.

Oh, how I love Sandhill Cranes. They glean the farmer’s fields just after the seed crops have been harvested. There are many in Southern Manitoba in October doing this exact same thing. Gorgeous.

I don’t blame the Canada Geese getting out of Canada. Gosh, golly, it looks like much more fun in the pond at Sapsucker Woods than it is walking around in the snow in Canada and not finding any food.

What shocked me is precisely how much smaller the geese are when compared to the swans.

Just look at that. It makes the Canada Geese look like miniature ducks. Seriously. And I have always thought of them as large.

There was a juvenile Bald Eagle lurking about at Sapsucker Woods also.

Looking for some lunch?

No 6 The Red List: The Hawfinch

Ah, this is another one to pull out those shades and hues of brown. With its head the colour of rust or Corten Steel, its black bib and black eye surround, and heavy beak, this beautiful little bird, the Hawfinch, has a jaw and beak so strong that it can exert pressure of more than 50 kilograms on a seed! The strong triangular beak is black in the winter changing to a blue-black in the summer. Notice the rusty head in comparison to the grey-brown back and that intensive brick-brown eye. Both males and females are similar in appearance.

Hawfinch bill

Hawfinches like to live in woodland where they will feed off various hard seeds. Some, if you are lucky, can be found around gardens eating cherries. The male builds the nest out of dry twigs and grasses lining it with lichen. The female will take over in roughly a fortnight.

Today there are less than 1000 breeding pairs of Hawfinch in the UK. There are a number of causes. Nest predation by Jays and Grey Squirrels is one of these. In Wales, the culprit has been trichomonosis. Trichomonosis is an infectious disease caused by the parasite Trichomonas gallinae. The parasite attacks the upper digestive tract, mainly the crop and esophagus making it difficult for the bird to eat. It can also impact the liver, lungs, and air sacs. The fourth hatch at Melbourne last year died of trichomonosis as did the Mum at the Janakkalan Osprey nest in Finland this past summer.

That’s it for today. I hope that each of you have a wonderful weekend. It looks like it could be dry at Port Lincoln so maybe, at the age of 57 days, Big will be ringed and get that sat pak. We wait to see.

Thank you for being with me. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their posts and streaming cams which make up my screen captures: Friends of Osprey, Audubon, Cilla Kinross and the Orange, Australia Peregrine Falcon FB, BBC, Tweed Valley Ospreys, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, and Ferris Akel Tours.

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

24 October 2022

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

QT is now Lillibet, Little Bob has a huge crop and other news in Bird World

6 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

Oh, goodness. One area of my City had its first snow last evening and the temperature for the rest of us is 1 degree C. (Think of 0 as 32 degrees F). We had our first heavy frost last night. This cold snap will surely put some of the birds that are arriving in our City on a path south!

The active nests remain in Australia while the Bald Eagles work on their nests for egg laying later in the year in the US. Rain is the issue at some of the nests. Melbourne received 3 inches of rain or 7.5 cm. Mum worked so hard to keep those eyases dry. Sadly, the Collins Street scrape will have more rain today – perhaps an inch – starting at around 0800. My weather report says that should end around 1300. It has really rained in Sydney and there are some areas that are flooding. Rain should begin in the Olympic Park where the Ironwood Tree nest of the Sea Eagles is located at around 1100 and then stop. Port Lincoln could be dry today! Yippee. It looks right now that Orange could be dry as well. We wait and see how the forecasts hold up BUT regardless, these amazing raptor families are doing well despite the heavy downpours that are occurring. That is simply wonderful.

There is word that Friends of Osprey – think Janet Foster, Ian Falkenburg, Fran Solly – from Port Lincoln and all those who donated or joined Friends of Osprey – have received four sat pack transmitters for this year. There will be one available for Port Lincoln and one each going to the three other nests should they have fledglings. Calypso has been seen numerous times and is flying well. She is the 2019 fledgling from PLO. Ervie is, of course, out and about being the man about town in Port Lincoln. This is excellent news. More platforms are planned for South Australia as well as the number of Ospreys grow in the area.

Friends of Ospreys has a new website and they are grateful for all donations. All funds go directly to the camera, etc at Port Lincoln, new platforms in the area, and those precious transmitters. This is their new site and it is packed with information. Not a member? Consider donating. Membership is $20 Australian.

Here is the latest news from the blog on our darling Ervie:

https://friendsofosprey.com.au/our-tracked-osprey/

An announcement came out of the Royal Albatross Centre on Taiaroa Head yesterday that a decision was made and accepted by all members that the Royal Cam Chick known as QT be officially named ‘Lillibet’ after Queen Elizabeth II.

I was worried about Little Bob at Port Lincoln yesterday. Big and Middle continue to go at one another and well, I will sound like a broken record but, it is a real blessing that they stop fighting and act nicely at the fish table. ‘A’ noticed yesterday that Little Bob’s lack of a long neck is hampering him if he is not at the right position during feeding. That said, he walked away with several nice size crops later yesterday when larger fish came to the nest.

In the image below, have a look at Middle Bob. Notice the dark woolier down that is now replacing that light grey coat of down the osplets had when they hatched. They will retain this thermal wooly layer to help them regulate their temperature. Feathers will begin to appear. You can already see the rusty-gold ones on their head and nape. These will be followed by the wing, tail, and body feathers until they get their full juvenile plumage. They are going to be very itchy and will spend much time preening.

Remember that the feathers are often called ‘blood feathers’. The feathers grow from blood quills which will disintegrate and fall off as the feathers grow.

Little Bob looks great with that big crop of his. You will notice that all three chicks are in the full reptilian phase including having ‘clown feet’.

We all wondered if Little Bob would be another Ervie. He certainly does his best to get up front and at the beak for feeding. The beaking between the two older siblings does send him into safe positions and it does appear that he is often afraid of them — and for good reason. He is still very small. Let the older more evenly matched siblings take their angst out on one another!

Dad continues to provide lots of prey for the Melbourne eyases and he does his best to feed them and keep them covered from the sun. It is difficult for him to brood them – even last year, Old Dad has a huge problem when it came to four chicks. They all seem to be doing well including the smallest one.

Mum has been notified that prey is delivered. She has flown off to have a break and eat.

Dad arrives and stays with the eyases til Mum returns.

Some chatting and bowing and Dad is off!

The older chicks can see well. It is hard to determine if the 4th has its eyes fully open and focused yet. Oh, how I wish there was a zoom on that camera!

The wee one at Orange is getting some food while Big Bob is growing like crazy. Everything is going well at Orange for Xavier and Diamond and we will all get to see how these two manage as parents of two this year instead of one.

There have been lots of feedings and Xavier has been able to feed and brood his family! He so loves being such an active part in everything instead of just providing prey.

SE30 has not fledged yet. The heavy rains in the forest should slow down any flying but, SE29 does not seem to be bothered flying in and out of the nest. SE29 is roosting elsewhere. SE30 is so excited to see its sibling when it flies in. They seem to have such a special bond with one another this year.

Fish have been coming to the nest and Lady often feeds SE30 and also SE29 should s/he show up on the nest. SE29 is often more interested in what is going around making one wonder if s/he is not also being fed elsewhere.

All of the nests are as quiet as they can be in the middle of the night in Australia. Despite the weather, all of the parents are able to feed and keep their little and not so little youngsters fed and warm (if needed).

Migration:

Checking on Karl II family for 5 October. Bonus continues to stay in the same area of Romania. Tracking shows that he flew a lot. This is a map of where he is and an image of the area.

Waba is still in Moldova at an area around Glodeni.

Waba seems to be enjoying a pond in the landscape. You can see by the blue dots that he visits there often. How wonderful he has found a source of fish and frogs.

Karl II has just astounded people with a 450 km flight. He is now in Turkey!

I see that there are no tracking reports yet for Kaia. On 4 October she was 31 km from the Mediterranean Sea. She is perhaps in areas where there is little satellite transmissions available.

Don’t forget that 8 October is Big Bird Day at Cornell Bird Lab. Go to their website to register for the bird count if you are not already a part of eBird. It is free. Here is the information to get you started:

https://ebird.org/news/october-big-day-2022

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and posts where I took my screen captures: Friends of Osprey, Cornell Bird Lab and NZ DOC, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, and Looduskalender Forum.

Ervie does a fly by to say ‘hi’ to Mum and other news in Bird World on Friday

16 September 2022

Oh, the best of the morning to all of you!

Thursday was a gloomy day on the Canadian Prairies with delightful periods of sunshine popping in and out – like the squirrels and the Blue Jays gathering peanuts to store for the winter.

One visitor, in particular, managed to let me get her photo – Dyson. It is difficult to tell if she is still nursing babies but, she is in good form. So grateful.

I do not know where her nest is precisely. It used to be in the century old Maple tree in the front of the house until the City cut it down this summer. Now she runs along the back lane to the West. Her tail is beginning to grow out.

Squirrels are like the Blue Jays. They can also let part of their tail break away if they are being attacked in order to survive.

One of the other garden surprises today was the visit by at least two different Blue Jay fledglings and Junior. Everyone is stashing peanuts. It is said that September is the month when the Jays do the most gathering. As a result, the pile is always large. Some Blue Jays over winter while others migrate. Will wait to see what happens.

It’s Junior. How can we tell? As the adult, he is the only one of the Jays moulting as the three youngsters only hatched in the spring. Notice that he is just getting a hint of his new crest and he does not have all of his tail feathers. The feathers that he has are nice and healthy, brightly coloured. Blue Jays can live to be 7 years old. Junior is now about 5. His parents are not longer with us as of this year. He has a mate and they were so lucky to have the 3 fledglings – they outsmarted the Crows and the Cooper’s Hawk!!!!!!! And even the GHOW. Their nest is across the line in a Maple tree. Like Samson, the Bald Eagle, Junior took over his parent’s nest.

The Sparrows find the 17 degree C a little chilly. There is a nip in the breeze and many perch on the ends of the lilac branches to get warm in the sun.

And here it is Friday mid-morning and it continues to rain. The trees and plants are loving it – the birds not so much! I see only two brave souls at the bird bath…oops, no…about 60 now!

Making News:

Ervie was flying close enough to the barge this morning to say ‘hi’ to Mum! Oh, cheeky Ervie. You just wanted Mum to remember that you are a year old now. Oh, and you were thinking she would invite you home for a fish dinner?? Oh, poor Ervie. You almost have brothers and sisters. Mum is busy. Hopefully you can have some fishing time with Dad.

The Ojai Raptor Centre reports that our beloved Victor continues to make progress and his zinc levels are normal. Oh, gosh. Isn’t that wonderful? Look how handsome this Two Harbours fledgling is!

A new subarctic seabird is breeding on the Diego Ramirez Islands. Have a read — oh, and they are using the Grey-headed Albatross’s nests!!!!!!! Thank you to Holly Parsons for posting this on the Albatross Lovers FB Group.

https://www.acap.aq/latest-news/4440-a-newly-described-landbird-the-subantarctic-rayadito-recorded-breeding-within-an-active-grey-headed-albatross-nest-on-islas-diego-ramirez?fbclid=IwAR1mfwMeFd1zXQ1cxLcegs3A6G3gR2BBVDap7uiD4VQ9p0eluDSTtFKdGDw

With Idris having departed the evening of the 13th and not seen since, the staff at Dyfi Osprey Centre will turn off the streaming cam in just a few hours. Here is that pastoral view.

The view at Glaslyn

At Loch Arkaig.

At Loch of the Lowes.

One of my friends in the UK said that it is best if we start knitting Osprey toy lookalikes until the end of March or beginning of April when the Ospreys return. That would actually be a great charity idea!

Travel safe and always with full crops our dear UK Ospreys. Full crops over the winter and safe and swift winds home in the spring.

New News:

Well, SE29 has been getting the fish deliveries on the Sydney Sea Eagles nest but, Lady, always keeping a watchful eye makes certain that SE30 gets some! Lady has blossomed over the past four years into a fantastic Mum.

The sea eaglets jumping and flapping at 0644 in anticipation of breakfast arriving.

Look at how clean the eaglets feet and talons are compared to those of Lady.

Attempts at self-feeding will continue until these two will remarkable appear that they have always been able to hold the fish down and pull with their bodies to get the flakes off. Early days of training.

SE30 waits very patiently. Remarkably civil these two. Both females? Both males?

Lady lets SE29 try and then feeds both of her babies so that each gets a good start to the day.

The second male at the 367 Collins Street Peregrine Falcon nest in Melbourne continues to make his presence felt by continuing to land on the ledge but, is he actively wanting to be involved in the raising of these eyases? or is his presence going to harm? It remains unclear as we are now 11 days from hatch watch.

His presence is clearly causing the older male whose scrape box this was to be reluctant to incubate the eggs. So what will happen when prey is needed for the eyases and Mum needs a break in feeding them? Who is actually protecting this Mum and the scrape box?

This is an image posted on 367 Collins Falcon Watchers of the two males. The original male – father of the clutch we believe – and the visitor on the right. Don’t worry! It is the camera angle that makes the one on the right appear larger.

Our cute little dad has very large yellow circles around the eye. The oneon the right does not and has a line on the right of black on white. Note: Most male Peregrine Falcons have a prominent yellow eye line like Dad 1 here and Xavier.

A close up of beautiful Mum has been posted accompanying a link to the tracking data for the nest if you are interested.

Let us all hope this works out well.

It is raining and about 11 degrees C in Port Lincoln. Rain is good but let us all hope it dries up before hatch watch on Monday!

Diamond was busy rolling the eggs before the IR camera came on Friday evening. Less than 2 weeks!

The Bald Eagles in Florida and the SE US are working on their nests – Pa Berry and Missy have been doing so for over a week now, Samson is happy Gabby is home – and those on the Channel Islands are busy, too. Oh, and I thought we would have a break after all the Ospreys migrated. BUT not all the Ospreys have migrated. ‘H’ caught Dory on the Hog Island nest in Maine! So Dory, Skiff, and at least Sloop are all still at home with no hint of starting their flight south!

‘H’ and I both think Sloop is a female from all her behaviour over the year. She can join the club of being kept home and fed well so that she is fully developed like Sarafina, Blue 497, and Padarn.

In the image below, Dory has flown onto the nest in the late afternoon on 15 August. Sloop has also been fishing – seen returning to the nest empty taloned but wet twice. Thanks ‘H’ for keeping us up to date on this nest. Much appreciated.

Migration News:

One of the Finnish Ospreys has spent a week in Ukraine and has safely departed. This is a good sign. Warm thoughts for Karl II and his family who continue to be feeding at various parts of the country.

Bonus remains in Belarus near the Pripyat River. He must really be getting a lot of nice fish and frogs there.

This is an image of the area that Bonus is fishing.

Kaia remains near the Desna River in Ukraine. No word from Karl II.

From the Archive:

I am ‘the most’ famous Red-tail Hawk in the world. Who am I? Where is my nest? Who is my current mate? and do you know how old I will be in 2023?

Thank you so very much for joining me today. I hope that each of you is well. Please take care. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.

Thank you to the following for their posts and streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Ospreys, Ojai Raptor Centre, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, People’s Postcode Lottery, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Wildlife Trust, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, 367 Collins Street Falcon Watchers, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Audubon and Explore.org, LAJI-FI, Looduskalender, and Cornell Bird Lab.


I am Big Red. My nest is on the campus of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. My original mate was Ezra and my current mate is Arthur. I will be 20 years old in 2023. I was banded as a juvenile at Brooktondale, New York only 7.5 miles away form my nest now in the fall of 2003.

Early Sunday in Bird World

21 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone. It is a gorgeous sunny day – a good day to go out checking on ducks! It did get a little excited and a little tragic. There was a scratch scratch behind one of those switch covers. For awhile I worried that a squirrel had gotten into the wall but listening carefully you could hear the flutter of wings. All light had to be shut out, all doors closed and two layers of plates and plugs had to be undone…and we still could not get to a cavity where the bird could fly free out the open door. If the birds make their way down the chimney in the wood stove, we have a fool proof way to deal with this but…not where this little bird got itself. I have to admit that at first all I could imagine was as squirrel leaping out. The key now is to find out how that bird got where it did so that no others get themselves in this predicament. Sadly we cannot save it.

As many of us wait with much ‘impatience’ for eggs to appear at either the Charles Sturt scrape in Orange or the ledge scrape on the 367 Collins Street skyscraper in Melbourne, I will try and find as many short video presentations or articles so that we can learn more and more about the Peregrine Falcon, the fastest raptor on Earth. In this less than four minute video, David Attenborough shows us how the Peregrine sets about to catch its prey in Rome.

Cal Falcons caught Annie and Alden doing some bonding in the scrape….and then Alden saw a moth!!!!!!!! It is so amazing how a parent’s behaviour influences eyases (or human parents on their children). I had never seen any of the chicks at the UC-Berkley scrape box in The Campanile ever chase moths until his year! ‘B’ commented that it is a great strategy for teaching eye-talon coordination – essential to being a falcon.

Stephen Basly worked for a very long time cleaning up the images that he took of Little Bit ND17 on his perch at the St Joseph River so we could really see this fine juvenile. There are two other images on the Notre-Dame Eagle FB page.

It is so wonderful to still be able to see this amazing fledgling. So grateful.

Someone else is still coming to her nest, too, and that is Iris! Every visit to her nest and every time we see her is so very, very precious. Iris is possibly 29 or 30 years old this year and she lives in the wild. She migrates. No one knows where but it is often thought it could be the south of Texas. Other Ospreys from this particular Montana area have transmitters and either go to Central America or parts of Mexico.

Many of the females on the Osprey streaming cams are still at home. Maya, the mate of Blue 33 at Rutland, is still home as of Saturday morning, the 19th. It appears that 1H2 and 1H3 have begun their migration leaving the eldest daughter, 1H1, at the nest with Mum and Dad.

At the nest of Rosie and Richmond, Rosie is the only one of the couple that migrates. Richmond remains in the San Francisco Bay area. Here is Rosie in the golden glow of a fine August morning.

During the week of 11 August at the Dyfi Nest in Wales, it was 30 degrees C – the exact same temperature that the Ospreys will have in Africa. Emyr Evans says that he never remembers this happening before ever. Telyn, the mate of Idris and the daughter of Rutland’s Maya, was still at the Dyfi nest as of Friday the 19th. Yesterday she flew to the nest with a mullet which Padern and Paith were very much interested in…

Meanwhile, the first hatch of Idris and Telyn for the 2022 season, Pedran, has not been seen at the nest since the 11th of August. She was 77 days old and it is believed she started her migration earlier than all.

Mrs G is also still with us, too. Here she is with all three of her 2022 fledges on the Glaslyn Valley nest she shares with her mate, Aran.

Mrs G is the oldest UK Osprey – at 23 (?).

In the world of Bald Eagles, Chase & Cholyn were caught perched together. They have been raising chicks at the Two Harbours nest together for at least 19 years. They are the parents of Thunder who is breeding at the West End nest with Akecheta.

Their fledgling this year was Lancer — and thanks to Dr Sharpe, Lancer got a second chance at life when he fell off the nest and was clinging to the side of the cliff for 24 hours. Thank you Dr Sharpe for always taking such good care of the Channel Island eagles.

The camera at Two Harbours – the one for the old Overlook Nest that they used to use – has Lancer on it. The camera cuts in and out of ‘Highlights’ but Lancer can be seen around 0702, 0710, and 0721. Here are some of those lovely images this morning of Lancer looking out to the sea.

What a lovely wild place to hatch — and return to, Lancer.

Andor is spending the night on the Fraser Point nest that he shares with his mate, Mama Cruz. They are the parents of Victor who is in care at the Ojai Raptor Centre and Lilibet.

I have seen no other mention of the three year old, Trey, who returned to her natal nest (parents Mama Cruz and Spirit). Mama Cruz had taken exception to her being at the nest while Andor had ignored the visit. At one time Trey was under the nest like Victor. Many of you wrote and asked me if Dr Sharpe would rescue her. I have written to find out the status of Trey. I will let you know if I hear anything. If, however, you are aware of Trey’s status, please let us know.

Speaking of Victor in rehab because of heavy zinc toxicity. ‘C’ writes me today to tell me that one of the serious issues with bird cages. He asks, “Did you know that cockatiels raised at home have a problem with zinc in the body? There is an interesting research done by veterinarians in Brazil. It is common to find a lot of zinc in cockatiels when they go to the vets. They found in the research that the source of zinc was in the cages. There is a lot of zinc in the cage bars. And when the cockatiels are biting the bars, they consume zinc.” This is very, very interesting. Victor would have been larger than a cockatiel so how much lead would he need to consume to be so sick? And wouldn’t all caged birds including Budgies be threatened by the zinc in the bars?

Mark Avery was with the RSPB for nearly 30 years. He writes a blog about many things including governmental policies, the end of grouse hunting calls, etc. in the UK. Yesterday, however, he published a blog by Les Wallace. The focus was the promotion of a documentary film looking at what wildlife would have been in the UK if humans had never existed. It is all about rewilding and Wallace draws some very interesting connections on which species should be introduced first. It is a good read.

Kaia is still in Belarus. I can only imagine how wonderful it would be for the Black Storks of Estonia if there were no humans living in any area on their migration route. What will happen? where will she go? The Ukraine is dangerous for the wildlife and many of the natural areas that the storks visited to eat and eat and get their strength to fly to the centre of Africa have been destroyed.

Big Red and Arthur were spotted by Suzanne Arnold Horning. Big Red is in her stage of moulting where I often call her ‘Big Blond’. L2 has not been seen since Thursday and it is now fully possible that s/he has left to find their own territory. Big Red and Arthur do not migrate. It is entirely possible that the other hawks in the region do not migrate either. Must find out!

Big Red. August 20 2022
Arthur. August 20 2022

Karl II has brought fish in for Iks, Waba, and Voog. Bonus was not at the feeding. You will remember that Bonus is the only surviving chick of Jan and Janika. He was fitted with a transmitter. If he has begun his migration the information should be showing up on one of the migration charts. Will check and report later today or tomorrow.

Hatch is not expected to happen at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge until the 18th or 19th of September.

This is the latest satellite tracking of Ervie. There is some speculation as to why he might have headed to the same area as Calypso.

Port Lincoln has also posted some information about their new Friends of Osprey FB and Website. As many of you are aware, Port Lincoln could not take donations as much as everyone asked to help pay for the streaming cam. They formed this group as a response and it has morphed into a good site for information. There is a $20 AUD charge.

We are expecting eggs at the CBD 367 Collins Street scrape any day now. If you want to check out the status there is a 367 Collins Falcon Watchers FB group. Victor Hurley has said they will turn on the camera the minute eggs are laid. Yahooo.

The Sydney Sea eaglets are doing great. SE30 does not always trust 29 and for good reason. Yesterday it found some ingenious ways to eat including between Lady’s legs – something seen on numerous Bald Eagle nests.

The only eaglets on a North America streaming cam left to fledge are those at the Glacier Gardens nest in Alaska. The larger eagles take longer to fledge than those in the south. Love hatched on May 29 with Peace hatching on June 1. Historical records indicate that GG1 fledged on day 86, GG2 on day 83, GG3 on day 85, GG4 on day 97, GG5 on day 98 and Kindness, GG6 last year, fledged at 86 days.

Unfortunately there is a branch that always seems to make it impossible to see the entire nest. So GG7 Love is 84 days old if we count hatch day and Peace is 82 days old. It is entirely conceivable that both will fledge within the next week.

I want to thank you so much for joining me today. Please take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or their FB posts and websites where I took my screen captures: Cal Falcons, Notre Dame Eagles, Montana Osprey Project, LRWT, Golden Gate Audubon and SF Ospreys, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bwywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Explore.org and IWS, Mark Avery, Looduskalender, Suzanne Arnold Horning, Eagle Club of Estonia, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Friends of Ospreys, and Glacier Gardens.

Idris..Little Bit..Ervie..eggs in Melbourne?? Early Saturday news in Bird World

20 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It’s Saturday and the sun is shining down golden this morning in Winnipeg. There is no forecast for rain. Everyone living here wishes we could have shared some of the moisture with those places that need it. It is going to be 26 degrees. Friends have seen trees full of Turtle Doves south of me. That is a hint that fall is coming. They are on their way home for the winter. The plan will be to go out and check on the ducklings later today when they are all out paddling. The garden animals have been quiet – or I should say the Crows and the Blue Jays. Are they still mad at me for going away for two days? or have the Blue Jays already left? and the crows, too?

I grew up in Oklahoma and although I have not visited since 2014, at that time, you could drive 100 mph on the turnpikes. The State of Oklahoma is proposing more turnpikes – and there is growing opposition because of the harm it will bring to wildlife. Here is the story:

Kenneth Kujawski posted a video of our Little Bit ND17 perched at the St Joseph River. You really have to look closely to see him – but all images much appreciated. Below the top video is a second. I believe you can hear Little Bit 17 wheeing….because he doesn’t like 16 sitting beside him. This time 17 flies off the perch.

In mid to late August each year the ospreys migrate from the UK to their wintering grounds in west Africa. It has taken just 14 short weeks for the osprey chicks to hatch, fledge and grow to a point where they are ready live independently. The chicks leave one at a time without their parents and make their own way south to the rivers of Gambia, Senegal and Guinea Bissau.

It is unusual to be seeing so many birds visiting their nests at this time but, it is always special to see them as we have no idea when they will leave their territory and head to their winter homes. Today the camera operator at the Dyfi Osprey Platform in Wales, home to Idris, and Telyn, zoomed in to give us some magnificent images of Idris. Idris continues to bring fish for Paith, the third hatch, and Padarn, the second hatch. Telyn is the daughter of Maya at Rutland. Telyn hatched in 2013. Idris’s history is unknown. He has been breeding with Telyn at Dyfi since 2020. There is some thought that Idris was usurped at the ON4 nest in Wales by Monty’s son Z1, Tegid (2016).

Each is just slightly different. Idris is a grand fisher and he is often called ‘Daddy Long Legs’ for his extremely long legs that help him with his catch. What a magnificent male you are, Idris.

Telyn was last seen a week ago. His oldest daughter, Pedran, was last seen on the 11th of August. It is ‘assumed’ that they have both left the territory to go south. Idris will remain at the Dyfi Nest until all of his daughters have left for migration. He will absolutely not leave until then.

This is 7B1, Padarn. Just look at that amazing crest!

Padarn has decided to rest while she waits for Idris to bring her lunch.

That is Paith, 7B2, on the right with that great big mullet that Dad delivered. No fear, there will be something left for Padarn.

How cute.

A friend sent me an image from the Patuxent #1 nest today. The male is certainly keeping this osplet well fed! Goodness. I am not certain that isn’t the largest crop I have ever seen on a juvenile. And just look! Dad has another fish. I sure hope he gets to enjoy it! But no. He will leave it on the nest for later.

Many chicks were waiting and calling for food today – they would have loved to have had that fresh fish from the Patuxent nest.

The two at Loch of the Lowes called and called but Laddie LM12 did not appear with a fish. The one on the nest does not look to be starving!!!!!!

This young lady, the eldest of the three girls, 1H1, was hoping that her dad, Blue 33, might get a fish to her right away if she sat and called and called. Blue 33 will not leave his gal hungry. Never. Maya was still at Rutland as of the 18th. I did not see her today.

The procedure that seems set in 60 million years of development with Ospreys who migrate is always this: the female leaves a few weeks ahead of the fledglings. Then the fledglings who are now fit fledge. Then Dad. So then, this brings me to a number of very serious questions regarding the Loch Garten nest. AX6 Axel has not been seen 15 August at 0635. The female, Asha, unringed, was last seen on 14 August at 1018. The male chick, 1C2 is still coming to the nest to be fed. Why would the male leave before the chick? Has he been usurped by an intruder? There has been a constant intruder who is now arranging the twigs on the nest. It is KL5, a two year old, hatched at Loch Ness. Is the chick being fed off the nest by an injured dad? is it possible 1C2 is catching its own fish in the loch?

While the Uk, European, and North American Ospreys are preparing to take their winter break, the nests in Australia are getting busy. Everyone is watching Xavier and Diamond very closely – hoping for eggs! Diamond was in the scrape box on the water tower at Charles Sturt University in Orange today putting the final touches on the indentation in the stones.

For those of you that do not know Xavier and Diamond, they are quite the pair. Neither is young but I do not believe anyone is sure of how old they actually are – or how young! Xavier is tiny and cute and tries so hard to please Diamond. There is one thing that Diamond does not like to eat and that is a European Starling. She will if she is starving but, normally, she will refuse the prey offering from Xavier if it is a Starling. She much prefers the parrots and a nice fat pigeon if Xavier can find one in the country. They are plentiful in a city like Melbourne but rarer in Orange. Parrots on the other hand are somewhat plentiful.

Xavier has brought Diamond a Starling and stashed it in the corner for her.

Xavier comes in and removes the Starling – hopefully it will enjoy the nice meal! I never thought of birds as ever being picky eaters but Diamond doesn’t like Starlings and Victor doesn’t like trout. I wonder which others have quirks?

You can watch Xavier and Diamond on this streaming cam. There is also a cam looking directly out front and one on the water tower.

Mum and Dad are incubating three eggs at Port Lincoln. In the image below, Mum has returned from her break and is urging Dad to get up!

Port Lincoln posted two images of Ervie showing that his talon is growing – ever so slowly. Little stub on left foot of our dear Ervie. Thankfully he watched Dad and got the hang of fishing in the right spots and that talon no longer means he can only catch puffers!

Isn’t this the most magnificent image of Ervie?

The Sea Eagle nest is the only one with little ones. Port Lincoln is incubating and the falcons are ‘thinking’ about eggs both at Orange and in Melbourne, I presume. This is the latest from Melbourne CBD-367 Collins St Falcons and this is early!!!!!!!!! So excited.

The Sea Eaglets are getting around all over the nest now.

Lady makes sure that 30 gets fed.

Look at SE30 stand on its feet. I am not supposed to comment on the fat little bottoms and legs of the chicks! I did this last year with an image of the Melbourne falcons and caused quite the stir. Apparently the largest supplier of chicken legs and other parts is a company called Steggles. One of the FB comments said she couldn’t stop laughing and almost choked. — But seriously. Look at that tail and little bottom of 30…precious.

Thank you so much for joining me this morning. Have a wonderful Saturday. Stay safe! Take care of yourself. We will see you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or posts that make up my screen captures: State Impact Oklahoma, Notre Dame Eagles, Dyfi Osprey Project, Patuxent River Park, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and Scottish Wildlife Trust,, LRWT, Charles Sturt Orange Falcon Cam, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and Sea Eagles@BirdLife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

Victor is a picky eater, Little Bit Soars, and Ervie tests out spikes – early Thursday in Bird World

18 August 2022

I have started writing this with the news of Wednesday the 17th that some of you might not have seen. It has been raining and raining with tornado warnings for a couple of days now and it is expected to continue. As a result I am scooting out to the nature centre and local ponds to continue the duckling and gosling counts whenever I can. Good thing. The skies opened up in the middle of the night – many friends had pets who were frightened by the fierceness of it all.

It always puts a smile on my face when I go out and all the waterfowl families are where they normally are. It is true that they develop an area to their liking and it is equally true that some wander from one place to another. I hope that some images might brighten your day, too. I did not do any colour adjustments. The water looks like pea soup – the surface is made up of tiny little leaf like bits.

This Mallard family lives in a particular spot. I have been following them since June.

I always know which pond to find them. Today, I saw them coming around a bend. Ducks paddle fast. The female kept a watchful eye but seemed not to be bothered by my presence. She has seen me so many times that it seems she just goes on about her business as if I am not there.

You can see the leafy bits easier in the image of the Mallard below. It is clearly a different surface from the much-needed-to-be-cleaned-full-of- human-debris pond at one of our other parks.

I found this bunch lounging under one of the benches in the shade trying to stay cool.

What has been most interesting to me is that the Mallards are thriving – what ones that survived – at the Nature Centre with their ever growing ducklings while the Wood Ducks have taken over a park and there are only 5 or 6 Mallards. I do know that they do not like one another!

The Ojai Raptor Centre has given us an ‘excellent progress’ update on our dear Victor.

Look how tall and handsome Victor is – remember when he could not stand and he required physiotherapy by being held by a towel with holes for his legs? What an amazing transformation! (At this point, it is perfectly permissible to shed a tear or two).

I wonder if Victor is yelling for fish?

Now, it turns out that Victor is a very picky eater!!!!!! He only likes Whitefish so the Ojai Raptor Centre has sent out a call for the fishermen to bring in fresh Whitefish. It is costly. If you have been thinking about donating or making a shop purchase in aid of Victor, maybe now is a good time to do this. He has really made fabulous progress with their great care.

There is very sad news coming out of the Arboretum in Minneapolis. The only osplet on the nest was near fledge. It had leapt off of the nest – and survived a couple of times – due to human activity below the platform. Two days ago the little one jumped off again in fright. Searchers have not found the youngster and it is assumed that it was predated. #85 on the list of feathered friends departed. I will happily delete that entry if the osplet turns up!

This was the announcement:

Of course, I have an opinion! (And I am certain you do, too) It won’t help this osplet but protocols need to be developed and put into best practices everywhere there is a raptor nest. Areas near Osprey platforms need some separation from human activity. This chick was known to leap out of the nest due to its fear of humans below. It was nearing fledge. Two options: Once a near fledgling has leapt out of a nest due to the fear of human activity, Kept the chick in care til it could fly OR stop the human activity around the platform until such time as the chick fledges. It really is that simple. When do non-emergency human activities take precedent over the safety and concern for wildlife?

Little Bit ND17 has been caught perched on ‘his’ branch and soaring over the St Joseph River near to the natal nest in St Patrick’s park. Oh, he is doing so well. Just brilliant. What a role model Little Bit is for all of us. He ate anything he could find on the nest to stay alive. I will never forget him scurrying back to the part we couldn’t see to eat something – normally the pelt of a squirrel or a raccoon so 16 could not come after him. It didn’t matter to him – it was food and it kept him alive. He kept his wits about him even when he did not have food for a couple of days…and he never gave up! Little Bit wanted to live and to soar like a big eagle — and he is doing just that. Look at him go!

Suzanne Arnold Horning found L2, the first of Big Red and Arthur’s 2022 clutch to fledge and the second to catch its own prey (L4 was first), today after there had been a brief storm. L2 is incredibly beautiful. He is out by the fields and it looks like he is sitting on a pole like a good hawk watching for voles and chipmunks. Red-tail hawks are gorgeous. Like the hawks that visit my garden on occasion during the fall and winter, they are capable of sitting like a statue for extreme periods of time waiting for prey.

Sadly we are entering a period where the raptors will be going into care because of lead poisoning or from being hit by cars. Those that eat carrion are especially at risk as many people will not stop and remove a dead animal from the road and place it safely away from the cars. — If you do see a dead animal, you need to think quickly on your toes because you do not want to be a casualty either. Not everyone carries a shovel and a collapsible pet carrier or cardboard box in their car but it really helps if you have a shovel or piece of wood to remove the carrion to the side of the road. Put your flashers on. Watch so you do not open the door when there is oncoming traffic. Then be bold. Wave your arms to stop cars. Most will but be darn quick to get out of the way if they don’t. Then scoop up the animal and put it away from the road in the ditch — we do not want it close to any cars. Thank you! Tonight, however, the culprit is monofilament line. None of the children at our nature centre, when questioned, realized that ‘fishing line’ was dangerous to wildlife. Education is key.

This little Osprey fledgling was lucky that people were willing to work after hours to give it a second chance when it was found tangled in fishing line.

Oh, what a sweet little thing. It looks like it is feeling better already.

Even the fish get caught up in line – many break the line leaving the hook inside of them. A kind person living in my city found this fish near the shore wrapped in monofilament line. They stopped, cut it off, and worked with the fish for 5 minutes to get the life back in it. That fish got a second chance, too.

Every living thing deserves our kindness.

The Sea Eaglets 29 and 20 continue to thrive. Lady fed them both a nice breakfast – not a crop buster but, a good start to the day.

30 is really starting to have a growth spurt. We can still tell them apart because 29 is just that little bit ahead. you can see the down gone from its entire head to the nape. There are more back and wing feathers.

The feathers are really developing. In a wink these two are going to look so different…and look, hardly any down bits left on those heads.

Cooper’s Hawk

Most of us know Dr Eric Greene from his work with the Montana Ospreys and, in particular, his love of dear Iris, the oldest Osprey in the world. Yesterday he posted a video on the University of Montana website about a very special raptor family on the grounds of the campus.

Our City is home to numerous Cooper Hawk families and I am hoping to get out to see one of them at a park called Bunn’s Creek this weekend with a group. You might recall that a large female Cooper’s Hawk took up residence on my deck early this spring. It appears that they have ousted the little Sharp-shinned Hawk from the territory.

‘H’ sent some great images of Sloop. He doesn’t have his landings perfected — or does he mean to buzz those siblings???? Congratulations to Dory and Skiff – they fledged three beautiful ospreys this year who have ample time to get in form for migration.

The take off – wings up, Sloop!

The buzz. Thanks ‘H’. Great screen captures. Too funny.

The Black Stork, Kaia, continues to stay in Belarus travelling only a few kilometres to find food. Her battery is operating at 99%. Here is her current position.

Mama Cruz has visited the Fraser Point nest this morning. She is showing concern – there is a ‘stranger’ in her territory. It is Trey, her 2019 daughter with Spirit. Trey is under the natal nest in the bushes.

How do I know this is not Andor? There is no wing tag. Mama Cruz shed that tag in April 2021 and she has only one band, a federal silver band on her right leg because when she was ringed Dr Sharpe believed she was a male.

Has something happened to Trey? It is not clear why she is in the bush under the nest and not flying.

Migration is under way and you can go to this link to find an interactive map.

Emyr Evans has posted an image of Pedran, Idris and Telyn’s daughter, who is today 84 days old. She has not been seen at the nest for the last 7 days. Did she undertake the earliest migration in Welsh Osprey history? or will she return to the nest from some adventure? or, sadly, is she lost? No one can answer that question yet.

News coming out of Port Lincoln Osprey is really good. Dear Ervie has demonstrated that certain approaches to keeping birds off poles simply do not work!

And there is a great article about Mum and Dad’s three eggs this season. Osprey are so rare in South Australia.

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2022-08-18/osprey-breeding-eggs-conservationists-thrilled-port-lincoln/101343128?fbclid=IwAR1rd-z0ZeS_zBQQtmLIlTzoPIcoxvN1SWX8X8V-TdZH6claZLhTEBgwV2g

Thank you so very much for joining me today. Please take care of yourselves! We are expecting more and more rain but I hope to get out into nature somewhere — you sleep better. Your mind is refreshed. I hope that you will make an effort, no matter how small, to take in nature’s beauty today.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB posts where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Dyfi Osprey Project, BirdCast, Explore and IWS, Looduskalender, University of Montana, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Bobby Horvath, Suzanne Arnold Horning, Notre-Dame Eagles FB, Twin Cities Metro Osprey Watch, and the Ojai Raptor Centre.

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.

Super Good News in Bird World

4 August 2022

It is a very early good morning to everyone- just past midnight. I am posting this newsletter early so that everyone will get to read the great news that is coming in – in case you do not already know. In the case of Victor and Little Bit, continued thanks to the wildlife rehabilitation staff that intervened and gave them a second chance on life.

My goodness, it is such a wonderful feeling as if you are floating on a cotton candy cloud when there is great news in Bird World. If you get emotional, I suggest you get the tissues out before reading further.

I want to thank ‘B’ and ‘L’ for alerting me to the special news about Victor in my inbox.

The Ojai Raptor Centre posted this announcement about Victor. When all of us were worrying he might not get well or he might not be able to feed himself ——– well, he is self-feeding and doing a grand job of it, too. He is in an outside enclosure not inside the clinic. Oh,, Victor, you have worked so hard to get well and all the staff at ORC have just being doing the best for you. Tears of joy, tears of joy.

Video of Victor self-feeding:

Video of Victor’s outdoor enclosure:

The other good news is, of course, Little Bit ND17. Images were taken and studied by several who go to the park on a daily basis to watch and photograph the Notre-Dame eagle family – Mum, Dad, ND15, ND16, and ND17 Little Bit. They have longed to get a good clear picture of 17 but wanted to be sure it was him. Here is the announcement in the Notre-Dame FB postings for today:

I was so skeptical when Little Bit was returned to the park without the ability to hunt his own prey. I am joyful to have been proven wrong! Notice the top right image. See how the hair kind of goes around in a partial donut shape. It reminds me of my late father-in-law who was bald but that circular band. It appears that some of the top is flat like strands of longer feathers covering up the places where feathers are missing. At the onset, I did not think he had a crop but, yes, that top right image appears to show that he has recently eaten. What a wonderful relief to see him looking and doing well. Thanks to everyone who worked hard to ensure Little Bit got a second chance on life and those birders on the ground who tried desperately to get images to reassure all of us. Thank you.

The Sea Eaglets are doing just fine, too. The crops of both of them are simply about to pop!!!!!!!

An hour later, Lady is urging them to have ‘just one more bite’! They are growing and will have a rapid growth spurt. Full crops will be the order of the day. Look at how the wings are forming and each has a cute little tail.

The two osplets on the Osoyoos Nest are looking good this evening. The forecast was correct and it has cooled down some – of course, it is still hot, just not as blistery. The chat for the streaming cams appears to be down. Not sure why unless it is all the spam.

Soo had a big crop at 10:46.

Another delivery.

Looks like one of the chicks got the last delivery and is self-feeding.

One crop fuller than the other chick who is fish crying.

I cannot give you a fish count but it appears that both chicks ate today and so did Soo. Fantastic.

Ervie is out flying about and finding nice fish for dinner. He must miss hanging out with Dad on the barge and going to the nest to eat his fish. I wonder if he will try to return to the barge after this breeding season?

It is good to know he is safe – GPS trackers certainly help with that.

In the case of each of these nests or particular fledglings, it is so good to know that they are either improving in care or are doing splendidly on their own. There has been no word on L3 or L4. We wait.

I want to mention a book called Beauty and the Beak. How Science, Technology, and a 3D-printed Beak rescued a Bald Eagle. It is by a pair of talented women – writer Deborah Rose and wildlife rehabilitator, Jane Veltkamp. I first heard of the efforts to save this particular Bald Eagle when I was looking for information about the McEuen Park eagles in Idaho. The intended audience would be children ages 8-12 (I think) but I also enjoyed the gorgeous photos and learning about how science and new technology saved Beauty’s life. It is another fantastic book about positive interventions. If you teach science or know someone who does, I would highly recommend this book. (Cost in Canada is $11.46 for the glossy paperback).

It is a beautiful story of compassion and the commitment of Jane Veltkamp to help Beauty the Bald Eagle.

My regular newsletter that normally appears around noon CDT during the month of August will appear in the early evening on 4 August.

Thank you so much for joining me with all these good news stories. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their postings and/or streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Notre Dame Eagles, Ojai Raptor Centre, Port Lincoln Ospreys and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

Sarafina flies, Too many fish at Osoyoos, and other good news in Bird World

31 August 2022

Good Morning! I hope this finds all of you well. For those of you waiting to see Sarafina fledge, she did it at 0655 Sunday morning, 31 July. Congratulations to Louis and Dorcha and to all at Loch Arkaig!

I am so glad that Saturday is over! This means that if the forecast is correct, the nests in the Pacific Northwest that are broiling will begin to get some relief from the heat in two days. Gosh, that seems like such a long time but they have weathered extreme heat for nearly a week and all are still with us.

Olsen and Soo have really done an amazing job keeping the two osplets in the shade on Saturday and, well, anyone who has ever fished know that the fish go down deep to get into cooler water. Ospreys are only able to dive 1m or 3 feet below the surface of the water – so they need those fish swimming around near the top not going deep to get cooler. By 0930 Olsen had delivered quite a number of fish, apparently some better sized than others. I did not count them. There was one delivery around around 19:30ish. It appeared that the two chicks were super full and Soo got some nice fish, too. — They look good at the end of today. Such a relief.

‘H’ sent this image of the ‘unwanted’ fish.

At 08:55 Sunday morning, One chick is sleeping on a fish piece, the unwanted is still there, and Soo has a super nice crop. I sure hope Olsen got some good fish, too. This family is depending on him! And Olsen, you get the gold star for the week. You and Soo are doing amazing.

On Saturday, Ferris Akel ended his tour, as always, with a stop at the Cornell Campus home to Big Red and Arthur. He found L4 prey calling to Mum and Dad. Big Red was also located.

Oh, my goodness, what a handsome fledgling. L4 has lovely light grey-blue eyes that will get darker and darker turning into an exquisite espresso colour in adulthood. He will also get his red tail when he is a year old.

L4
L4
L4
Big Red

The White-Bellied Sea Eagle nest in the Sydney Olympic Forest is becoming much calmer. There is plenty of prey. Lady feeds SE29 and 30 still about every hour. I noticed that the feedings are getting a little longer and that both chicks have nice crops at the end. It will not be long until there are fewer feedings with the chicks consuming much more prey.

What to expect as we end week 2 and prepare for week 3? The chicks will have doubled their size. You might also notice that their shape is changing – they are getting longer and so is their beak! We will begin to see them climb out of the nest or egg cup exploring their surroundings and pecking at leaves. By week 4, some pin feathers on the wings will begin to show.

The last feeding before night fall in the forest. If you look carefully you can see how the down is ‘looking different’. There will be little ‘black dots’ soon.

If you love White-tail Eagles then you will be excited to know that the oldest WTE couple on Mull Island just fledged their 25th chick! Skye is 28 and Frisa is 30. Look at that beautiful baby!

https://www.birdguides.com/news/uks-oldest-known-white-tailed-eagle-pair-fledge-25th-chick/?fbclid=IwAR2VaicG4ZgKYXqWASf-x4qjwOstyti3NUx0uEiQnEJ51PY8waezLbHO-ig

Another article about our dear Victor’s recovery.

Please note that Victor is not standing on a towel but has moved to a low perch. Lovely.

https://www.ojaivalleynews.com/news/sick-bald-eagle-recovering-at-orc/article_c4540a4a-0f08-11ed-91fc-4ba35f94378b.html?fbclid=IwAR1dT0-m8dw_Q5mF4p4ZyPyaGIuZ6Wo_9uuVq1-WpQ4PLlLe3CI0LF-Fs3Q

I am certain that everyone will agree that you can see the improvements in Victor. The top image is a couple of days ago- the lower one is when Victor began his physio.

I saw no images but on thee Notre Dame chat, Little Bit ND17 was seen by someone at the park. That is good news.

Our other lad, Ervie, really flew about Port Lincoln yesterday!

You may recall that the Port Lincoln Osprey Project carried in parts of a new tower platform nest for the couple at Turnby Island. Previously their eggs had been predated by foxes on the island. The new tower was to stop that predation with a plan in place to rid the island of its invasive fox population. The time for egg laying is near – and look what is causing the ospreys to alert.

Port Lincoln says this foxes’ days are numbered. He cannot, however, get to the eggs which were previously laid on the ground. Thank you Port Lincoln!

The two Ospreys at the Janakkalan nest are safe from the Goshawk again. They eat and sleep, sleep and eat…

Eating..

Dad with another delivery.

Last but he could never be least – one of our ‘saviours’ of the year – Alden. Alden who insured that Annie’s eggs and the last of Grinnell’s chicks would hatch – with maybe a contribution of his own! (No word on that yet). Alden finally found a little time to ‘loaf’.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is a little wet on the Canadian Prairies – again. My garden is like a jungle. The three fledgling Blue Jays and the three fledgling Crows continue to visit. Images to follow tomorrow. I hope that all of you are well and enjoying some time in nature today. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, FB postings, etc which have become my screen captures: Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Osoyoos Ospreys and ‘H’, Sydney Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Sydney Olympic Forest, BirdGuides, Ojai Raptor Centre, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and Cal Falcons.