QT flies and Louis and Iris together

2 September 2022

Hello Everyone,

Two moments caught in time. One a fledge or was the chick carried out by the wind and storm early? and Iris and Louis together. Both left a real lump in my throat and little tears.

Quarry Track chick had her wings spread wide. The rain made the mud a little slippery where she had been gardening.

She looked up to the sky calling.

And she flew. It could not have been a more perfect fledge although it might be argued that the storm helped. Her legs are tucked up and really, she looked ready to go.

The Royal cam chick flew at 12:53 on the 3rd of September 2022. She was known as QT for Quarry Track chick but everyone knew her as the way it is pronounced…Cutie. The daughter of YRK and OGK, she is the full sister of another Royal cam chick, Pippa Atawhai of 2020.

The winds were blowing and it was raining hard. QT gave a couple of beautiful sky calls like she was announcing she is meeting her destiny and flapped her wings. The strong winds lifted her up and off the nest.

It was unexpected but it was a beautiful flight and I can’t help but believe she was ready to go. No doubt YRK will be wondering where her daughter is…and where her mate OGK is. This adorable dad has not been seen on land since the 19th of May.

Here is a video of that great flight:

Cornell posted a video of Iris and Louis on the nest yesterday. I have posted individual images yesterday but, enjoy the video. I do not know about anyone else but this feels like a very strange poignant moment – the two of them together, looking out at us.

No matter what anyone thinks or has thought about Louis, Iris is completely devoted to him. She seemed to visit the nest much more often if he was around this year.

Is this goodbye?

Thank you so much for joining me for these two rather touching moments in Bird World. I will look forward to seeing you tomorrow. Please take care.

Thank you to Cornell Bird Labs, NZ DOC, and Montana Ospreys for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures and video clip.

Ervie goes fishing, Egg 2 for Diamond and Xavier and more…Sunday morning in Bird World

28 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone. I hope that each of you had a lovely Saturday. Thank you so much for joining me today!

From the Mailbox:

‘A’ asks: What is the average time difference or gap for Peregrine Falcons to lay their eggs? Diamond looks like she is ready today. Thank you, ‘A’. That is a very timely question as we sit staring at Diamond’s bottom for her tail feathers to begin to go up and down when she is in labour. In the nest notes that Cilla Kinross, the researcher at the Orange Falcon cam compiled, it says that the average time difference is 56 hours. As I write this, the time in Orange is 13:21 on Saturday. That egg is due anytime.

‘L’ asks: What is the purpose of molting? The feathers of our bird friends get damaged just like our clothes from normal living. They break and get tears. Moulting is the annual replacement of the feathers. In fact, think about it. Feathers are so important to birds – they keep them warm and dry and, of course, are needed for flying. They should be in tip top shape which is why birds spend so much time preening. Some birds begin to moult in the spring. Others wait until nesting has finished. Moulting is really hard on the birds and it is normally done when there is an unusually high level of prey so they can keep their energy up.

‘C’ writes: “I’m glad I helped with that information about galvanized steel that contains zinc. But in stainless steel, the component is chromium. Is it also bad for the health of birds? I searched very quickly, and in a very superficial search, I didn’t find anything that chromium is also bad for.” The information you provided was very useful. As one of our other readers ‘L’ writes there are some uses for zinc that are also helpful such as in ‘Zinc Ointment’ for baby rashes. I do not know a lot about chromium. It is also used in ceramics to make certain shades of green glazes and is highly toxic in its powdered form. It is not toxic after the pottery has been fired to a specific degree, however. — We assume that the things that we use for cooking are all ‘safe’. Sometimes it is only later we discover that there could be connections to specific ailments. However, if I had a beloved bird that lived in a cage – the cage wires would be stainless. We have a metal shop in our city that made all the SS backings for my kitchen and my island top. I am certain there are similar facilities in other cities where they could make the wires. I am still finding this whole zinc toxicity that impacted Victor very curious. I wish I knew more!

In the News:

The UK is still celebrating the arrival of more than 100 Hen Harriers.

The New York Times published the following article about how climate change will impact the birds we love and which are more likely to go extinct first. The cover shows the Kakapo and my readers know that the Kakapo Recovery Group is working hard to make sure that the flightless parrots survive. Today there are 205 of them on a couple of mall islands of New Zealand.

Nest News:

Chase showed up with a nice big fish and waited and waited on the Two Harbours nest for Lancer on Saturday morning around 10:38. Lancer never showed up. What a change it must be for the parents from nearly getting their talons torn off to sitting quietly to see if anyone will arrive. If you have left the territory, Lancer – soar high, be safe and always have a full crop!

Such dedicated eagle parents. Did you know that Chase & Cholyn have been together for 19 years?

Ferris Akel had a terrific tour on Saturday afternoon around Ithaca, New York. I was listening and doing other things until he got to the Cornell Campus where he caught Big Red, Arthur, and L2 on camera. Oh, it is lovely to continue seeing L2. According to Suzanne Arnold Horning, the latest a juvenile has been seen at the Cornell Campus is 28 August. L2 looks pretty comfortable. I wonder if she will shatter that record?

Arthur was hunting.

L2 could see Big Red in the distance when she was on the pole and was prey crying really, really loud. Since L2 was the second juvenile to catch her own prey in June I am imaging that Big Red’s answer to that is: “Get your own!”

Big Red looks a little ‘rough’. She is moulting. Like other Red-tail Hawks, Big Red undergoes a complete moult once a year. Normally, hawks begin their moult in spring and every feather has been replaced by September or October. Big Red, however, appears to begin her moult after the eyases fledge.

Xavier has been bringing Diamond some extra special treats during Sunday to help Diamond keep her energy up for the egg laying. One was an Eastern Rosella which is a very colourful parrot and the other was a nicely prepared pigeon. Diamond was excited for both!

The arrival of the Rosella meant that cute little Xavier could have some time with ‘eggie’.

Diamond had a very large crop when the pigeon arrived but she certainly wasn’t going to turn her nose up at that special food gift.

It is 13:57 in Orange and Diamond is sitting on the ledge of the scrape box while we wait and watch for an indication that the second egg might be arriving.

Diamond is back on the egg at 1400.

Diamond is very focused and she looks ‘heavy in the rear’. Egg 2 could be coming shortly. Diamond normally lays 3 eggs. For the past two years, only one egg has been viable each year.

Diamond laid egg #2 at 17:27. Yippppppeeee. Why am I so excited? Well, falcon eggs do not always hatch and for the last two years Xavier and Diamond have had only 1 out of 3 eggs hatch so it makes the chances better of having a successful hatch.

Xavier arrives at 17:33 to see the second egg and to bring Diamond her dinner. Notice that Diamond is being very careful. Falcons lay their eggs standing up. She is protecting the egg while the shell hardens in the air. The gap between eggs is 57 hours.

Diamond did not want to eat. She had already had two big meals. She remained in the scrape box. During the night she would sometimes incubate or, alternatively, stand above the eggs protecting them. Remember the Currawong know there are eggs in that scrape and they will eat them if the opportunity arises!

The Melbourne couple seem to be finished with three eggs and each takes turns incubating. Dad was very anxious to demonstrate that he was well seasoned in incubation. The Melbourne crew even made a video of the persuasion.

It is a very short and cute clip. Oh, do you ever wish you could speak falconese?

Friends of Osprey have posted some photographs of Ervie near the Marina where he had dived and caught the lovely fish he is eating. They were taken by Alex Ditton. Oh, goodness. It is always such a joyous occasion when someone shows us that Ervie is doing very well indeed! Check out the Friends of Osprey for more images of Ervie.

Kaia remains in Belarus around the Priypat River. This is what the area looks like where she is resting and fishing.

Bonus, the only surviving storklet of Jan and Janika that was fostered with Kaia and Karl II has begun his migration. His tracker tells us that he traveled 109 km and is now in Latvia near the village of Vietalva.

Travel safe dear Bonus, fly high, stay out of the war zones, always have a stream full of frogs and fish — prosper.

There should be more news but it appears that all might have left for their winter homes from the Karula Forest nest of Kaia and Karl II. I will confirm this tomorrow.

Bonus was always a very special Black Storklet. He would not have survived without the intervention of Urmas and Dr Madis and his team. They would have died on the nest. Urmas’s foresight to provide fish baskets meant that everyone had lots of fish. A special thank you to all who donated towards the food for the nest.

The Dahlgren Osprey nest in the US has announced that the male, Jack, has not been seen for a few days so that now Harriet, the female, and the sole surviving fledgling from the nest in King George County are on their journey south.

No one has been seen at the Loch of the Lowes since yesterday. Laddie LM 12, Blue NC0 and both of the fledglings appear to also be heading south.

It was another successful year for Ospreys in Wales and John Williams gives us the run down in his last blow of the season for Llyn Clywedog. The numbers of Ospreys in Wales are growing. There are now 7 ‘known’ pairs who produced 17 chicks this year. John catches up with all the nest news.

John also produced a chart for all the chicks hatched at Llyn Clywedog – noting that there is simply too much grey. Were those chicks ever seen or not? Sometimes they do get missed.

Handsome Aran on the perch at the Glaslyn nest this morning. He remains bringing fish to the nest for the fledglings. Mrs G was still home as well today.

Handsome, Aran.

Emyr Evans has provided us with the data of the fledges at the Dyfi nest asking the question: what happened to Pedran? Emyr is great with statistics and this is a good read about migration and young fledglings.

https://www.dyfiospreyproject.com/blog/emyr-mwt/pedran-what-has-happened-her?fbclid=IwAR2nZUelKdPCJFEW-3PIjKlcohXunU9JSBevJA8wFl4XpT1ICR9H8O8bepA

Rosie was still on the perch at the SF Bay Osprey nest this morning! Brooks has not been seen at the nest for some time now – this is not alarming. She is out exploring!

Congratulations to Glacier Gardens. Both Love and Peace have fledged. Here is a video of that moment on 25 August when Peace took to the air. Congratulations for another successful year Liberty and Freedom!

Thank you so very much for joining me this beautiful Sunday morning. I hope that you are doing well and I will look forward to having you with us again in Bird World.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, their posts, and their videos that form my screen captures: The New York Times, Explore.org and IWS, Ferris Akel Tours, Charles Sturt Orange Falcon Cam, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Friends of Ospreys, Looduskalender, Dahlgren Ospreys, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, John Williams and The Clywedog Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dyfi Ospreys, SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon.

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.

Early Tuesday in Bird World

23 August 2022

Today turned out to be a very special day (22 August). OK. It is always special when I can go out to the nature centre and do my long walk. It is also a good way to check every nook and cranny for the geese and ducklings. A few had moved from where they were yesterday but many stayed in or close to their normal pond area. I continue to be fascinated that there simply are no Wood Ducks at the nature centre. It is like the two species – Mallards and Wood Ducks – sat down and signed a truce and decided who would go where! There were a lot of birds at the ‘winter’ feeding stations — they must fill the feeders year round. There were several Downy Woodpeckers, two American Goldfinches, a number of Black-capped Chickadees and then a bird sitting in the squirrel feeder that I did not recognize. After going through the birding book, it appears that the little lovely below is an immature female Rose-breasted Grosbeak. I certainly welcome any help with this ID.

The most excitement came this evening, however. It is hard to imagine sitting next to a pond which is about 6 metres away from, perhaps, the busiest highway in our City and seeing a Great Egret fly to a tree to join two others. They are part of the heron family but they are very large. In North America they have black legs and a yellow bill. They gather in groups near ponds and wetlands if there is plenty of food. Otherwise, if food is relatively scarce, you will see them alone.

What a magnificent creature.

In the mailbox. Following up with the question about Titi and Boris and the reason for the Janakkalan nest cam in Finland to go offline. We have answers. Thank you ‘S’ for getting back so quickly to us. Boris was seen on the nest two days after Titi’s fledge. It was the morning of 12 August. Titi did not return to the nest while the camera was still operating.

There is a video of Boris’s nest visit.

There were difficulties with the camera and it completely broke down. It will be fixed and will be up and running again next year. ‘N’ did receive a response from the Finnish Osprey Foundation stating that there were a number of Osprey fledglings in the Muonio in Northern Finland. Thank you ‘N’.

Can you help? There is a new book on Peregrine Falcons being written by Richard Sale in the UK. Susan Sale writes with the following information and a question. “My husband is self-publishing a book on the Peregrine Falcon and I am trying to source the following Peregrinus Casini, Japonensis and Pealei. Do you have any photographs of them or perhaps give me some contacts who may and if you or they would be willing to allow use in the book.” If you have any images of any of the three sub-species of Peregrines or you know someone who might be able to help, please contact Richard and Susan at this e-mail address: Richard@snowfinch.co.uk

Several have been wondering about Big Red and Arthur’s L3 and L4 that are currently in care. They ask “Will they, if ever released, be placed near their family so BR and Arthur can find them? If not, Who and How will they learn to hunt after all these WEEKS in the clinic???” L3 and L4 are in very good hands. Just like they would if they were patients in my local wildlife rehabilitation centre, they will learn to fly and they will also be taught how to hunt and catch their own prey. I do not know where they will be released.

‘B’ sent a note and wondered if I had seen Thunder and Akecheta on the West End nest together. I had not and went quickly to rewind and there they were. Thanks ‘B’. We are always happy to see the parents on the nest as well as the fledglings!

‘L’ wrote: “When I grew up in the north of England, along the Pennines…near the Lake District….I never saw an Osprey, Kite, Goshawk, Golden Eagle that were native to our islands as we had eradicated them… I thought all was lost .it wasn’t and these efforts wipe away the despair that can overwhelm you when you ask how can we make a difference. WE make a difference.”

‘L’ you will then be thrilled to learn that the National Trust, RSPB, and the Peak District RaptorGroup just announced two successful Hen Harrier nests this year! And, as you know, the Ospreys are thriving and so are the Goshawks. Isabelle Tree’s re-wilding at Knepp is taking off…there will be more raptors.


Nest News. It is hard to imagine sitting in the heat of summer in the Northern hemisphere but, the forecast is for snow in Orange, Australia. Holly Parsons who heads up the FB group was posting an image of Xavier and Kelli HissiFit Walker, one of the new mods on the streaming cam chat, dressed Xavier for the occasion. I chuckled so loud – I hope you enjoy it. If I were Diamond I would not want to lay eggs in that cold!

Thanks Holly and Kelli for letting me share!

Like Titi at the Janakkalan Osprey nest, LC at the Osoyoos nest doesn’t seem that much interested in fledging — yet. LC is 66 days old today.

As of the 22nd, Telyn was still at the Dyfi Osprey nest. She has not begun her migration yet. There is no rush and the females need to be in top form before they depart. Taking care of three big female chicks really has to be draining because they require much more food.

I went to check on the Sydney Sea Eagles and Lady was feeding SE29 and 30. It was very civil. SE30 did a few quick grabs and kinda looked to make sure 29 wasn’t going to do anything. Lady had it all in hand – a bite for you and then one for you. Back and forth. How lovely.

Sometimes 29 did seem to get more bites than 30.

and then 30 would get a few more…

There is plenty of fish. Both will be full. Just look at the ‘blood feathers growing in on SE29’s back and wings. Oh, they are changing so quickly — and the are simply adorable.

It rained later in the day and Lady spread her big wings and covered those babes who do not, as you can see above have their feather covering.

Dad was in the nest and on alert to any intruders that might be around,

Migrating tracking. Kaia flew in a big loop today staying in the same area that she flew to after she flew north out of the Ukraine.

There is considerable worry for Kaia’s mate, Karl II, and migration has not begun. He normally spends much time at a nature reserve on the Black Sea near Odessa. The area is currently a war zone.

A lovely image of Little Bit 17 was posted by S Basly on the Notre-Dame FB page. It was taken on the 28th of July.

What a wonderful way to end today’s blog with a look at Little Bit 17. He is, of course, a prime example of what an intervention and wildlife rehabilitation can do to give a raptor a second chance at life. Little Bit deserved it and he is living it. Such a beautiful juvenile.

Thank you so much for joining me today. Please take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or posts that made up my screen captures: Notre-Dame Eagles, Looduskalender, The Eagle Club of Estonia, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Osoyoos Ospreys, Dyfi Osprey Project, Raptor Persecution UK, Explore.org and the IWS, Finnish Osprey Foundation, and the Orange Australia Falcon Cam FB.

Featured image is Thunder and Akecheta on the West End Bald Eagle nest in the Channel Islands. 22 June 2022

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.

Sloop fledges and Little Bit ND17 soars!

17 August 2022

Good Morning everyone! The sun is shining bright and there is not a cloud in the beautiful blue sky. It looks like it is going to be a fantastic day albeit a hot and humid one reaching 29 C (or 84.2 F) on the Canadian prairies. In fact, it isn’t really the heat but the humidity that is wrecking havoc with everything! Meanwhile my tomato crop continues to flourish. How many tomatoes can one eat and give away?

Yesterday the third hatch of Dory and Skiff was ‘stuck’ for more than 7 hours on the perch. Dory tried to lure him down with fish but Sloop was not moving! Viewers worried about the little osplet ‘afraid to fly’. Well, ‘H’ wrote this morning – Sloop flew!!!!!!! Time 0948. He was 57 days old. How wonderful. Thanks ‘H’.

You can see him flying over the water between the sailboat and the nest. Congratulations Boathouse Ospreys!

‘H’ sent a video of this first flight…did it like a pro. Congratulations Sloop for a lovely flight around the bay and a return to the nest. Thanks ‘H’ for sending all of us the video of that special moment in this Osprey’s life.

There is news of Little Bit ND17 soaring in the skies too. Always so grateful of news. 17 is doing fantastic — we always knew he was a survivor if given the chance. What joy to see him living the life of an eagle in the wild — and I still start giggling thinking of 17 pushing 16 off the perch!

You can see how Little Bit has his landing gear down. Beautiful. Just beautiful.

The two White-bellied Sea eaglets continue to do well and be cheeky to one another. No worries, it is all good. Look at those crops! And then look at the clown feet and growing beaks.

I belong to many groups that work hard to ban lead in the environment as well as rodenticides. As fall approaches and with continuing sightings of people fishing it is a good time to review the ways that lead gets into the environment that can harm our raptors. This is also a threat to our migrating birds who fly through areas where the guts of the deer killed are just left – full of lead shot – in the bush.

https://www.wildlifecenter.org/how-do-raptors-get-lead-poisoning?fbclid=IwAR3wjQapFMv31LJUcqxIXxI70nfQNwHvL8PSeMrgF0zMuPceCCHpy9K_uuk

The Osprey fledglings are still in the UK screaming for fish. As the next two weeks pass, the females will leave, then the fledglings, and finally the males once they are assured all fledglings have departed. I will eventually put up a complete list of who is home and who is not. For today we will just look at a couple of our favourite nests.

This is a 101 Guide to UK Osprey migration:

https://birdfact.com/articles/osprey-migration

At Loch Arkaig, Louis brought in a nice one this morning and Willow retrieved it. Safafina was not the least bit happy about that and had a bit of a tizzy fit on the nest. No worries, Louis is one of the great fishers and she will get her lunch soon! Just for a second look at the great condition this fledgling is in for migration. Gosh these two are dark like their mother, Dorcha. Just look at the necklaces. The envy of any fledgling!

All three fledglings at Llyn Clywedog hoping for Dylan to get fish to them. Seren Blue 5F was at the nest this morning with Dylan so she has not departed yet.

Telyn is still at the Dyfi Nest in Wales, too. Idris is busy feeding the three girls. This is Paith on the nest enjoying some fish and still screaming about it!

Telyn down by the river. She has caught a very large fish and is enjoying it.

Idris has a beautiful flounder for the girls.

At the Glaslyn nest, Aran has been busy chasing intruders —- and, indeed, as the fledglings and the two year olds (and older) begin their movement south, the nests will have lots of visitors.

A great image of Aran and Mrs G, the oldest Osprey in the United Kingdom, two days ago.

And will there be a fledge at the Osoyoos Osprey platform today? If so, it should be the last fledge for the Canadian Osprey nests.

I will try every day to check in on Kaia as she has left Estonia. She flew as far as the Ukraine and then immediately turned back heading north to Belarus where she remains. This is where she is today (she flew a little north in Belarus to a nice area for feeding.

Will all the storks fatten up in Belarus? And then attempt to fly around or through the Ukraine without stopping? War creates a horrible situation for wildlife.

Thank you for joining me this morning for this quick glimpse at some of the nests we have been monitoring over the breeding season. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB postings where I took my screen captures: Notre-Dame Eagles, Audubon Explore and ‘H’, Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, CarnyXWild, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Osoyoos Ospreys, and Looduskalender.

3 year old eagle returns to natal nest while Sloop decides to fly…or not

16 August 2022

Sometimes events are so heart warming that they need to be spread throughout the community. Sitting on a perch as I write is a 2019 hatch of the Two Harbours nest and Mama Cruz. Trey is the female eagle’s name because she was the third to hatch. She survived her migrations to return to the Channel Islands as a three year old! Just splendid.

My goodness even moulting she is gorgeous. A survivor. When you look at this three year old eagle be amazed. As we know most simply do not make it to their first birthday.

The Channel Islands eagles have graced us with their beauty in the past few days – Lancer at Two Harbours, and Thunder and Akecheta at the West End. Andor and Mama Cruz and now Trey.

Remember that the research tells us that it is the males that return to their natal nests. Well, this is a female! I hope that Victor’s natal nest GPS coordinates are hard wired into his system so that no matter where he is released, we will see him on this same perch in 3 years time.

In Canada we are familiar with Spunky, the Red-tail hawklet raised by the Bald Eagles in Sydney, British Columbia. This year it was Malala’s turn – another Red-tail Hawk – to be raised by Bald Eagles along with their chick,, Junior, on Gabriola Island, British Columbia. Well there was, at the same time, on the other side of the US, another Red-tail Hawk being raised by a Bald Eagle family in New Jersey.

Here is the story:

http://www.conservewildlifenj.org/blog/2022/08/16/a-new-jersey-first-hawk-raised-by-eagles/?fbclid=IwAR3zm79xSm8HSTx5ZZyArEdxNlS-ijtgpsvxz-fjjjVmOYXXDThz3mw54V0

It would seem that the raising of a hawklet on an eagle nest might not be as rare as we think.

A note from ‘H’ came flying across my computer screen. It is about Sloop, the third hatch at the Boathouse who has not fledged. He made his way up to the high perch and it would appear that he is afraid to come down. ‘H’ says Dory has been trying to lure him down with a fish. He has now not eaten since 1230 — and we know that Sloop loves his fish.

Sloop has now been joined by a sibling.

I have a great fear of heights and have so much empathy with our dear Sloop who has been up on that perch for almost 7 hours! Poor thing. The water looks calm and he can fly —– he just does not know it.

‘B’ gave me an idea. I am going to send Stephen Basly and Doreen Taylor snail mail thank you cards to St Patrick’s Park. I am certain they know them well – from all of us. It has been such a treat to be able to see Little Bit 17. So grateful for their efforts.

Thank you so much for joining me. Send good energy and a gentle wind to our dear Sloop in the morning. After his huge meal yesterday he will not starve. Remember in the wild eagles can go for days without eating and he had some crop. Yesterday he was too full to fly.

Speaking of crops…one last image. SE30 is the one on the right. No words needed. Take care everyone.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or posts where I took my screen captures: Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Audubon Explore, Bald Eagles 101, Explore and the IWS.

Little Bit 17 and Sea Eagle update

15 August 2022

I cannot thank the boots on the ground near the St Joseph River for keeping us informed about Little Bit 17. Without his tale tale tonsure, we might never know that it is him. I know that many of you are not members of FB so I took a couple of screen captures but, if you are members go over to Notre Dame Eagles and see the latest posting by Doreen Taylor. There are some great videos of 17 soaring as well as one of the parents.

The St Joseph River where Little Bit is perching and soaring.
One of the adults flying over the nest tree. Note the white head.
A capture from the video of Little Bit 17 perched preening.

Just seeing him out in the wild living his life – thank you Humane Wildlife Indiana. Tears.

There has been some discussion about whether or not a chick – not sure which one – had fledged or not. Our ‘osprey eyed reader ‘H’ kept questioning this. Today after watching one osplet on that nest move around all day and not fly, it has been confirmed that only 2 of the osplets from Boat House have fledged! Thank you ‘H’.

And there the osplet is…stuffed with fish, flying no where soon. With the camera off for 2-3 weeks it was really difficult to even identify which osplet was which – not sure it has been done yet!

Keep your most positive thoughts for Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. Mum and Dad are into hard incubation of the three eggs. Let us hope that he does not have another ‘spell’.

Beautiful Mum.
Dad comes to give Mum a break.

Last. SE30 is doing great. He is flapping his wings and crawling out of the egg cup. Don’t tell 29 but 30 is figuring out how to get up to Lady and get the first of the fish!!!!!!!!

Sea eagles have wide and long wings. The pin feathers coming in so nicely on the part of the wing closest to the body in image 1 are the secondaries. They have 15 secondary feathers and 10 primaries – the ten closest to the wing tip. You can get a glimpse of those coming in.

As you can see SE29 is moving around the nest keeping balance using those wings! You can feathers appearing slightly on the shoulders (as black dots) and back of 29 in subsequent images. They will start to flap those wings more.

We are getting ready for the biggest plumage and development changes during the next two weeks. They will go from mostly being a fluffy chick to looking more and more like an eaglet. They will stand on their two feet and begin to make efforts to self-feed. So lots of exciting things to come!

‘B’ sent me a note after the images of Lancer appeared in yesterday’s blog. He reminded me that Dr Sharpe had saved so many eaglets this past season including Lancer who clung to the side of the cliff. Yes, Lancer also had a second chance at life! Thanks Dr Sharpe.

Thank you for being with me. I knew you would want to hear about Little Bit. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their FB posts and streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Doreen Taylor and the Notre Dame Eagles FB, Audubon Explore and ‘H’, Port Lincoln Osprey, and Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

Fledge at Osoyoos!

13 August 2022

I saw it but didn’t know what I was seeing since I had been away. ‘A-M’ confirmed that Big Chick – chick #2 – fledged this morning at 0821. The chick returned to the nest at 0918.

Here is that moment. I could not wait to share it with you. We have all worried about these babies and hats off to Soo and Olsen. They pulled off what appears to be two fledges this year – LC will soon follow! What a triumph. So happy for this Osprey family who has battled heat dome after heat dome this summer with all three of their chicks perishing last year. Congratulations Soo and Olsen!

LC and Soo wait for BC’s return.

Thank you to Osoyoos Ospreys for their streaming cam and to ‘A-M’ for confirming that fledge this morning and the successful return to the nest by BC. Well done!

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.