Sunday lunch at Captiva Ospreys

02.27.2022

Before I begin the morning report on Captiva, sad news. HH4, the sibling to HH3 that fell off the Hilton Head Island nest yesterday, also fell off the nest. The eaglet was noticed to behave oddly before falling over the edge. He has been rescued. If he survived last night, he will go into care this morning. The father brought a fish but the mother has not been seen for a couple of days. This is not the first Bald Eagle nest that has had juveniles falling off the nest or eagles just not being seen. Pembroke Pines have now lost 2 out of 3 eaglets. Our thoughts go out to all of the bird nests at this challenging time. It clearly sounds like the pathogenic Avian flu, H5N1. This is so very, very sad. However, we have to prepare ourselves that so many of the birds may die due to this disease. Our positive wishes go out to everyone working so hard to save these beautiful babies.

Here is the update from the Hilton Head Island Trust.

I am so glad that I did not have the opportunity to check the Captiva Osprey nest until just now when a fish was being delivered. Andy brought it in at 11:59:50. Little Bob worked his way to get to the front. This is the first fish that the chicks and Lena have had in approximately 22 hours. Lena did go for a swim to cool off and the chicks have been outside of the nest bowl this morning. It is so hot on that nest with the air temperature at 24 degrees C and a wind of 11 kph. Oh, I hope Andy manages to bring in some more fish so that everyone is full and hydrated today. They are eating nicely even though each is so very, very hungry including Lena.

Bobs peeking out from under Lena at dawn.

Out of the nest cup and in the shade of Mum. Everyone is hot.

Lena goes for a much deserved dip to cool off.

Andy delivers the first fish of the day to the family at 11:59:50. He did not eat the head.

Lena will fight that bony head to get some food to feed the wee ones quickly.

You can well imagine that being literally empty of food and hot and perhaps even a bit dehydrated that the Bobs were really scrambling for food. Lena is still feeding them at 12:20 and there are no crops to be seen yet. She is pulling really hard to get meat off the fish. Meanwhile, Andy has returned doing security duty and also hoping that there will be some fish left for him, too.

It is so good that this is a very large fish. There is lots for everyone. One of the Bobs (Middle?) seemed that it might have been suffering from the heat. It looked slightly dazed. They should be rehydrated from the moisture of the fish.

The osplets are getting crops. Little Bob has eaten well. He pulled an Ervie and he got right up there at the beginning. Such a relief! I will always worry about those little ones, the third hatch. They cannot hold so much but need to be fed much more often than this. Wonder why the fishing is so bad on the weekend at Captiva?

Lovely crops!

At 12:33 the chicks are still being fed.

One chick is in a food coma and the other two simply want to make sure they get all the fish that they can. I don’t blame them. This nest was steady as you go until yesterday with four big feedings like this one a day – at dawn and nearing 17:00. Now they do not know when there will be another fish delivery.

Little Bob has dropped its crop and is now up in line wanting more fish.

Despite Dad standing and hoping there is some fish for him – and he needs to eat too to have the strength to fish, Lena continues to feed the chicks because she doesn’t know when food will come again either.

Little Bob has a big crop again. This is good. Lena is making sure they are well fed. I hope she is also eating!

You can see the size of the crops growing and growing. Little Bob is so full he fell backwards.

There might be some left for Dad. Maybe.

Just about the time Lena thinks she is finished and Andy figures he might get a couple of bites, Little Bob decides he wants some more fish. This has been the remarkable trait of this mother. She feeds and feeds til every chick is full. That could be the one single reason that the beaking has not been more profound the last couple of days.

At 12:47 Lena offered to feed Andy. It was one of the most moving scenes I have seen on an Osprey nest. She knows that he is also very hungry. He did not ‘just decide’ not to bring fish to the nest. Something has caused the fishing to be ‘off’ this weekend.

It is 12:50 and Lena is still feeding the chicks. She has taken some big bites for herself, too, as the end of the fish draws near. Andy has flown off to hopefully get another fish.

Lena ate the fish tail at 13:01.

If you watched the Achieva Osprey nest last season, you will realize that the chicks at Captiva are so full that they can, if need be, survive until tomorrow without any more fish. I hope that they don’t but they would survive.

Oh, my. Lena went over to clean up the fish skin and Big and Little went over too thinking more fish! Send positive wishes to this nest. They really need another one or two feedings today to keep the stress levels down.

There are pips at Duke Farms and at Dale Hollow but no pip for Jackie and Shadow at Big Bear yet. Let us hope those eggs are viable for those two!

Thank you for joining me today. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the Captiva Osprey Cam and Window on Wildlife and the Hilton Head Island Trust for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures.

Late Saturday in Bird World

It has not been a great day for Lena on the Captiva Osprey nest. She has had only 2 fish for her and the hungry osplets and no break to go down and get that yucky fish juice off of her. In other words, she is loudly calling Andy as the sun sets desperate for a break and to fill those babies up for bed. If the last feeding was at around 13:30 they will be ravenous by the time the fish lands on the nest in the morning.

While Lena might be rather upset, everything seems really good over at the Dale Hollow Lake Eagle nest. Obey came in to see what he needed to bring to the pantry around 17:00. He then helped River with a tandem feeding of the youngsters while also eating some of the pantry himself. This really is a fabulous nest!

I honestly cannot believe that I had never heard about this nest until today. It is wonderful. Very experienced adults and healthy twins. Still one to hatch. Those little eaglets are tucked under River sound asleep. Happy Eagle dreams!

Ferris Akel found both Big Red and Arthur who were sitting on top of Bradfield enjoying the view. Arthur is on the left with his gorgeous scapula V plumage and Big Red is on the right. She is much darker than Arthur.

Arthur is such a cutie pie. I often just want to cuddle him!

Big Red was doing a lot of preening and simply didn’t seem to want to look at the camera.

So gorgeous. Both are busy bees working on their nest on the Fernow light tower on the campus of Cornell University.

There has been an update about HH3 – the eaglet who fell out of the nest at the Hilton Head Island nest.

There has also been an update on the Port Lincoln Osprey Project FB on Ervie’s tracker. It looks like he is extending his travels over to the right of North Shields and the airport.

Ervie always seems to roost at the same spot. I wonder if PLO knows where this is?

Early this morning the cam operator gave everyone a great view of the Calypso Star as she set out for the day. It is a good thing to remember that the Port Lincoln Osprey Project sponsors our camera view of the barge and the barge out of the earnings from the Calypso Star. They take no donations. So, if you visit Port Lincoln, take a tour with them as a way of thanking them.

At the nest of Jackie and Shadow, Mum is being very limited in her movements and allowing us any view of the eggs. She has been aerating the nest cup which improves the softness of the nest cup as well as providing oxygen during hatching and brooding. Is there a chick pipping under there? The answer could be just maybe there is!

The Quarry Track Royal Cam Chick aka QT is really too large for the adults to brood. They must be thrilled that the little one is out of the nest so they can actually rest their legs! I promise you this is one big boy. If not, I will make a donation to the Albatross Centre!

In the image below, YRK has to stand all the time in order to brood the chick. In the image above she is able to lay down! It must be quite nice. I wonder when they will have the contest to name the chick? And when the parents will stop staying with QT only returning to Taiaroa Head to feed their ever growing chick?

If you are in need of more Osprey nests, the male at the Williamsburg Landing has returned to the nest early – on the 23rd of February. He is working feverishly on this nest.

This Gloucester Point, Virginia nest can be viewed here:

This is an overview of a view of the birds that I do not always cover. I really hope that Andy brings in a huge fish for the Captiva nest very early in the morning. Speaking of Captiva, Connie and Clive were working on the Bald Eagle nest at Captiva this evening together. Will there be a second clutch? We should know tomorrow if Jackie and Shadow have a pip! Life is good except when eagles are falling out of nests. Will continue to monitor the Hilton Head situation for everyone.

Thank you for joining me. I hope Ervie visits the barge today! What a treat that would be. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Captiva Osprey and Window on Wildlife, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Hilton Head Island Eagles, Ferris Akel Tours, Williamsburg Landing, Dale Hollow Lake Bald Eagles, Friends of Big Bear, and Cornell Bird Lab and NZ DOC.

Late Sunday in Bird World

Oh, what a day in Bird World it has been! The weather at the nest of Pa Berry and Missy clocked in at 3 degrees F. That is -16 C. As a comparison, it was only -5 in Winnipeg today. Poor Missy. The snow and sleet were coming down, she has a hungry baby – and she is hungry herself – and there is a chick trying to hatch! My heart went out to her. There were a few tiny breaks in the weather for Missy. She jumped up and ate ferociously and then quickly fed her baby. The bad weather is due to continue til at least Monday afternoon. I was almost afraid to check on her but, then I did.

Pa Berry had brought in another fish. He looks pretty dry compared to Missy, ironically. Missy worked hard to get some food into her little one before she had to brood and try to keep that baby warm and dry.

Missy took lemons and made lemonade with it. She ate and so did her baby. It was fast. She could not afford for the wee one to get soaking wet, cold, and die. I was impressed. Whatever will happen at this nest with all the horrible cold and wet weather will not be this Mum’s fault. She was trying as best she could.

There were tornado warnings and 60 mph winds down in Miami-Dade County at the nest of Ron and Rita. That nest held. I caught some of it on a video clip. Rita works really hard trying to get the two babies under her so they will not get wet and chilled.

R1 has been brutally aggressive today to R2. Indeed, Rita had R2 begging for food and twice she did not feed until R1 came up to the front. At the end of the day, R2 was fed three times today. I cannot confirm the amounts or if there was a big crop like R1s. You might have noticed. But R2 did eat.

Harriet was soaked but she took great care of E19 and E20 during the storm. The heavy rain actually hit Fort Myers well before it started in Miami hard.

None of these issues – extreme weather and/or sibling rivalry -are happening down at the Kisatchie National Forest nest of Anna and Louis. Louis is bring ever more fish onto the nest and that little one is just a sweet little roly-poly.

I can count the remains of one Coot and six fish.

You will think I am nuts continually talking about this kiddos cute tail but it is cute. I have never seen such a cute tail on such a young eaglet. It looks like a soft little ball, so sweet.

Both eagles were on the nest at Duke Farms working on the egg cup. There are expectations that an egg will be laid soon. This couple is in line for some of that storm as well.

Mum is on the nest and the snow has started. Last year she spent almost her entire incubation period encased in snow and ice. I ached for her.

The winds are picking up at the Hilton Head Island Trust, the home of Harriet and Mitch and their two eaglets. The gusts are blowing at 31 mph but there is no indication of rain or snow hitting the nest.

Here is the tracking of that storm as it moves NE as of 9:23 pm on CNN. It is out of Florida. Mt Berry Bald Eagles are in the purple area of Georgia near Atlanta. Pittsburg-Hays, Duke Farms, and even Big Red and Arthur are in the area of winter weather advisories. Continue to send your warm thoughts to everyone here and in all the extreme weather systems moving about the planet including those with the tsunami earlier today.

Snow has been falling in Pittsburg.

Snow continues to be heavy in the Ithaca and Finger Lakes area of upstate NY. This is Big Red and Arthur’s nest.

Meanwhile, in the UK, everyone is getting excited. It is only two months until the expected arrival of the Ospreys. The BBC did a short programme on CJ7 and her nest at Poole Harbour in June of 2021. CJ7 found love this past summer and it is hoped that her mate will return and there will be chicks on this nest for the first time in 200 years! Wow. I am showing it again as the anticipation is bubbling over. It is short and it will also get you excited for the arrival of some of the North American returnees as well.

In New Zealand, OGK, the Royal Cam Dad, returned to incubate his egg and let his mate, YRK, go and feed. That egg is due to hatch on the 27th of January give or take a day or two. Lady Hawk caught the return and the cuddles of this sweet couple.

We hold our breath and wait for the storms in the US to pass and wish all of the nests the best in handling the weather.

Thank you for joining me. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots or video clips: WRDC Bald Eagle Nest, Berry College, KNF Bald Eagle Nest, SWFlorida and D Pritchett, Duke Farms, Hilton Head Island Trust, Pix Cams, Cornell Bird Lab, and CNN.

Saturday in Bird World

Good Afternoon Everyone. It looks pretty quiet out in Bird World this morning.

The two eaglets of Rita and Ron’s, R1 and R2, continue to sleep and eat without any observable ill effects from the rat dinner that they had yesterday. Fingers crossed. They are such beautiful and healthy little ones, curious about the world beyond the nest. Hopefully we can all go ‘whew’ after this fright is over – let’s celebrate on Monday.

They are very mobile, scooting around on the nest, balancing themselves with their wings.

This is Ron feeding the little ones. He isn’t as good as Rita but he tries.

There is an active pip watch at the Bald Eagle nest of Pa Berry and Missy in Georgia. B15 is doing well. Right now it also looks like Mt Berry could be in line for some of that winter weather making its way across parts of the United States. I really hope they get little or nothing. It isn’t nice to have a hatch when the snow and ice are coming down.

Pa Berry was on the nest with Missy on alert this morning.

B15 seems to have a good appetite.

Chatters are working on names for the little eaglet at the Kistachie National Forest (KNF) Bald Eagle Nest. The deadline for submissions is 30 January. Late this morning Louis flew in with a Coot to add to the 4 or 5 fish already on the nest.

The area is experiencing high winds today and are under a high wind advisory. It is also very cool in the forest at 8 degrees C.

This little one is the cutest little roly-poly I have seen in a long time. Anna has the feeding down and the baby is happy to have those nice bites of fish!

It is hard to imagine that E19 and E20 were this small a few weeks ago! Now they are at the big clown feet stage and their feathering is coming in nicely. I wonder if Harriet left this fish to see if anyone would try and nibble?

While other parts of the US are being hit with tsunami warnings, record levels of snow and ice, Florida is having a heat warning and should be getting some rain from that system.

Here is a lovely little video of E19 and E20 having their fish breakfast!

Finally, the pip watch for Gabby and Samson will be coming at the end of the week! I am so excited.

There have been intruders and both Gabby and Samson have been watching and listening carefully this afternoon.

How gorgeous!

An alert.

Time for some territorial defense.

All is well. Whew.

This nest is an active site for intruders. Gabby and Samson have to always be vigilant.

The two little eaglets are getting their feathers at the Hilton Head Island Trust Bald Eagle nest in South Carolina. There is no roll back. All I can say is that they appear to be eating well, growing at the right pace, and Mitch seems to have food on the nest for Harriet to feed the wee ones.

If you are in the line of the storms, tsunamis, and heat warning areas of the US or elsewhere, please take care. I will continue to monitor the WRDC nest of Ron and Rita with the hope that the rat did not get sluggy because of rodenticide poisoning. Ervie is on the barge and I will also check in with him and everyone else at the PLO later today. Thank you so much for joining me.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Berry College Bald Eagles, SWFlorida and D Pritchett, KNF Bald Eagle Cam, NEFlorida and the AEF, WRDC, and Hilton Head Island Trust.

Thursday in Bird World

I genuinely hope that the Bird World community does not have a fright like it did this morning when Gabby had not returned to relieve Samson of incubation duties for nearly 24 hours. Samson seemed nonplused by it all and maybe he knew where Gabby was. She has been known to disappear for a bit in the past but it seems unusual rip before pip. At any rate, all is well at the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest outside of Jacksonville, Florida.

A video has been posted of an intruder chase at the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest around the time that Gabby returned to the nest at 11:53. It would, thus, appear, as I thought, that her absence was based on a territorial issue rather than one of her ‘disappearing’.

B15 hatched this morning at 07:57 at Berry College. Everyone thought Missy might not ‘know to feed it’. She was up eating and looked over several times to see if its head was up and beak open. She knows what to do! Like the KNF eaglet, this little one is pooped from hatching.

B15 is a real little cutie! It looks very strong.

I sure wish Missey had gotten rid of those egg shells when B15 hatched. You will note that one has slipped over the end of the second egg. Hopefully this will not cause B16 trouble when hatching!

B15 looks so tiny compared to Harriet and Mitch’s eaglets at the Hilton Head Island Trust Bald Eagle Nest. Their feathers are starting to come in. Poor things. They are always preening and we think that they must be itchy.

I think this is a new take on ‘Sleeping with the Fishes’. Ron has been keeping the nest full of fish for Rita and the babies. He can often be seen feeding the little ones himself. They are doing nicely and this human-made nest seems to be working out well. Perhaps this design will be needed in areas that lose trees in big storms or fires.

The two of them are adorable. They scoot around all over the nest.

Bingo! Anna and the baby finally got feeding worked out. The little eaglet is going to have a nice crop. Louis is already beginning to fill the nest up with big fish.

I love seeing Louis and Anna on the nest. Look at that nice Pike that Louis brought in for lunch! And there is the little one with its crop holding its head up pretty good. It was so full it just fell over into food coma.

Louis has brought in more fish! No shortage of things for the family to eat. Louis is one of the most enthusiastic fisher-dads I have ever seen.

Anna and the yet to be named baby eaglet have figured all of this out! Just look there is a little tail!

This eaglet is seriously cute. The Rangers are looking for a name. Anyone can send in a suggestion. It should be gender neutral. Send name in an e-mail to: nameknfeagle@gmail.com Send it by 30 January.

You can see the tail and the strong wings below. Oh, adorable. This eaglet is going to be like Kisatchie – there were days you would think s/he was going to pop they had been fed so much. Anna is the kind of Mum that wants you to ‘take just one more bite, pleaseeeee’.

Just doing a quick check on the Port Lincoln Lads. Ervie was, of course, on the nest last night and Mum brought him a fish before bedtime. There are fewer and fewer fish deliveries indicating that the parents want all the boys to be out fishing themselves.

At 07:33:57, someone did, however, deliver Ervie a nice big chunk of fish!

Ervie has the fish.

That fish is under his talents but he is still mantling and flapping and prey calling. Just eat and enjoy it, Ervie.

An hour later Ervie is still eating his fish. His ‘gas tank’ is full!

I have been thinking about Ervie a lot. I have to tell a story to make my point. Years ago we had a black and white cat called Melvin. It was a time when cats could be outside where I live. Melvin loved nothing more than to roll in the dirt! He was always dusty. One day, when he was 2 years old, he disappeared. We looked and called but, nothing. Four days later Melvin was at the door crying to get in. We noticed some strange marks on his paws. It looked like thin wire had worn the fur off and there were a couple of holes. Had he gotten caught in a barbed wire fence? The result of his misadventure was real trauma. Melvin hid in the bedroom and walk-in closet. He rarely came out into the other areas of the house. When we had our cat sitter, Heather, she would take a flashlight to check he was OK under the bed and put his food there. Over the decade she helped us, she never actually saw Melvin, not once, just his eyes. Melvin lived 15 years in hiding, more or less. He would come out with us but no one else. While we will never know what happened to him, that event changed his life. This brings me to Ervie. If you remember, Ervie was the one going everywhere and being independent. It was Bazza on the nest. Then Ervie was away flying south of Port Lincoln. He has not left the nest since except to chase Falky. His behaviour has changed dramatically. Did he try to catch a fish and couldn’t get out of the water easily? We will never know what he experienced. I hope to goodness I am wrong about something traumatic happening to Ervie. He is clearly the dominant bird but why isn’t he out exploring?

The Audubon Society has announced today that the Migratory Bird Act has been brought back and will be strengthened in the US. Here is that information.

And, last but never least, the Kakapo Recovery. Today’s report on the breeding attempts and eggs. This is great news coming out of New Zealand.

It’s an exciting time full of ups and downs. We are on pip watch for Captiva and NEFlorida and with two recent hatches at Berry and KNF – well, it is difficult to keep track of all of them! I am really pleased at Anna and the eaglet getting the feedings worked out. It is all good down in Louisiana. I look forward to tomorrow. Think about a name for this cute eaglet and send it off!

Take care everyone. Thank you for joining me today. Take care.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: KNF Bald Eagle Nest, Berry College, Kakapo Recovery, Port Lincoln Ospreys, WRDC Bald Eagle Nest, and Hilton Head Island Trust.