Mum saves the fish…and other tales from Bird World

25 October 2022

Oh, good morning to everyone!

I hope that your day is starting off wonderfully well.

For those living in Melbourne, oh, enjoy those 24 degrees C temperatures for me, too. My forecast is for it to snow in the next hour! And for it to be -1 C tomorrow. Now…I don’t know about your meteorologists but, ours are sometimes not correct and I am really hoping that they will be wrong. Not for me but for all the birds that remain in our City. There are even reports of the first Snowy Owls arriving in the southern part of our province. Cold weather is really and truly on its way. I have never seen all the Snowys on the fields in our province. Looking forward to finally seeing one this year.

There was no snow when I woke up but it is 1 degree and grey. The Blue Jays are gathering peanuts in the shell and the Lilacs are full of little sparrows singing away eating their Black Oil Seed and millet. Just a few seconds ago six Canada Geese flew over.

Thankfully I had the camera ready because I was wanting to try and catch Little Red. He was too quick!

My attempts to lure the European Starlings down from roosting in the far trees did not work. There were, however, some wrens and sparrows that promptly went over to eat the Meal Worms and the Bark Butter. The squirrels were also busy today and Little Red continues to go in and out of the big box that holds the wood. That is where I put his new house – if he would move into it. I am afraid to go and check but it is possible that he is entering from the back hole to the house. Fingers crossed. It would be a great place for him.

There are a few Dark-Eyed Juncos still around looking for Millet.

Dad brought in one of the nicest fish I have seen to the Port Lincoln nest. Mum had been doing her talon dance and Middle had joined in prey calling. When Dad arrived, the fish, like all fish being slimy, slipped…oh, it looked like Mum was going to lose it down the side of the nest. But…she didn’t. She managed to get that very much alive fighting fish up on that nest and then she decided to fly off with it. I do not know what Mum did to that fish in the few seconds she was off the nest but it sure wasn’t wiggling and jerking when she got back. How many times have we witnessed these big fish, alive and fighting, being brought to nests only to hold our breath as they flipped and flopped over the ospreys??? Manton Bay comes to mind for this past season in the UK. My goodness I thought those two babies were going to die. How the one survived I will never know but, she did.

It is not the first time I have seen this happen and I am certain that you have, at one time or another, if you have watched Osprey nests, seen a fish go overboard. It is heart breaking. I cannot say for certain but many say that it takes about 15 dives to get a catch. That is a lot of energy expended to go over the side. And, as we all know too well, a fish can sometimes mean life or death to one of the chicks.

Mum fought that fish pulling and pulling so it would not go overboard.

The other thing that I find interesting in these situations is that the male does not help. It is as if once the fish is delivered he is done..gone. At any rate, three cheers for Mum. She did an amazing job wrestling that fish.

Middle is very clever. Mum is getting the fish situated and Big is already to eat. Middle does not waste any seconds getting to the table but he doesn’t just rush in either. He can see how long that fish is and slowly moves into place.

Middle is going to get a truly good feed.

It is hard to tell but, Middle has a very large piece of fish he is getting ready to hook.

Just have a look at our dear Middle. That crop could pop!

Notice also how heavy the wings are now. The ospreys will let them droop. I also like to point out the dark down on the chest. The ospreys will have a thermal down underneath their feathers that will help them regulate their temperature.

All is quiet. Two very full ospreys. As I write this, the time is just past 1500 in Port Lincoln. I have not seen another fish come to the nest yet but there will be at least 1 more if not 2 today.

It is so nice to have these three nests progressing along nicely without too much worry of anything untoward happening. Oh, yes, I always say that the fortunes of a nest can turn in an instant – and they can. Thankfully we have no worries about predators, like Eagles, owls, or goshawks, diving down to snatch the chicks out of the nest! Those are constant worries at some nests such as those in Finland and now, of course, at some in the US like Cowlitz PUD where all three ospreys were taken by a Bald Eagle.

Oh, how precious. Indigo walked over to give her little brother a cuddle.

Xavier arrived with the afternoon tea. For a moment I thought that he might get to feed Indigo and Rubus but, no…Diamond arrived. It looked like a Starling but then as Diamond plucked it looked less so. The fact that it took longer to remove the feathers with Rubus getting anxious and walking away to Cilla’s stones indicated that it must have been something larger. Oh, my goodness. When Diamond started feeding the two were jumping and stretching for joy! It was a great feeding.

Notice that Little Rubus is at the kind of cotton ball stage too…the fluffy white down just hanging on as the juvenile feathers grow underneath. Indigo is doing a lot of preening and if you catch a glimpse of her tail, it is really growing nicely. They are changing almost right before our eyes. It is now Wednesday in Orange and by the weekend we should see some dramatic differences in the plumage of both.

It sure looks like a Starling!

Diamond arrives and takes the prey. Xavier has a last look. Oh, he loves being a Dad and what a wonderful one he is!

Some of you more familiar with the prey available around Orange can probably identify this tea time treat. It looks like a Starling to me but please correct me if it is something larger.

Poor Indigo. Both ‘J’ and I noticed that she let Little Rubus be right up in front. I do wonder about the fright she had with that one Starling head having a lasting impression or lasting fright.

Rubus gets impatient waiting for the plucking to end and walks over and gets on Cilla’s stones. Do you know why the stones are placed where they are? It is so Diamond will have to lay her eggs so the camera can see them, not hidden in the corner.

Rubus has a ferocious appetite! Not to worry. Indigo did get some food!

Notice how Indigo is changing. You can see those beautiful tail feathers and we are now getting a reveal of her back as the soft down comes away from her eyes. She is going to be just a stunner.

Oh, and thankfully, someone caught the morning feed at 367 Collins Street on video! (I am not able to use my video app on this machine…I hope to be able to make video clips for you soon but, for now, we will rely on others!)

Around 1345 at the scrape of the Melbourne Four in the CBD of Melbourne, the parents are on alert. One is calling from the ledge and they seem to be spending time on the ledge protecting the eyases.

Even if there was an intruder about, the Melbourne Four managed another four feedings lasting over ten minutes. They were at 0641 for 17 minutes, 1126 for 11 minutes, 1629 for 12 minutes, and a really big feed at 1855 lasting for 18 minutes. Thank you ‘H’ for all those times.

Other News in Bird World:

One of our favourite Ospreys, Richmond from the San Francisco Whirley Crane nest in the Richmond Shipping Yards, has had to protect his territory from Ravens today.

This is the latest news on SE30 who was found in a residential neighbourhood. I sound like a broken record. It is incredibly sad that the eaglets are rushed out of the forest so they cannot get their flying strong and be taught how to hunt for prey by their parents. This scenario is repeated annually. Thankfully, all those wonderful people around the Discovery Centre who love these eagles from here and beyond keep an eye on them. It is also reassuring that the right protocols are in place to rescue the eaglets and get them into care. Let us hope that SE29 and SE30 are both kept in care until they are flying strong and know how to hunt! Thank you Judy Harrington!

There is also some progress being made at the North Dame Bald Eagle nest in St Patrick’s Park, South Bend, Indiana. This is the natal nest of Little Bit ND17. Good luck Mum and Dad. They have a huge job ahead of them!

How much is a Bald Eagle’s life worth? Sadly, not much. A Devon, Ohio man shot and killed a Bald Eagle. WKBN27 First News is reporting that a federal judge gave the man a one year’s probation, a fine of $4000 and another $1200 to USFWS.

Thank you so very, very much for joining me today. Take care everyone! See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their posts, videos, and streaming cams that make up my screen captures: Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Stuart Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, Norte Dame Eagles FB, Eagle Cam, SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon.

Another siblicide at Loch of the Lowes and other news in Bird World

14 June 2022

I want to start this blog off today with one of the cutest videos called ‘My Turn’. It is from one of the first – if not the first – osprey cams on Dennis Puleston’s property on Long Island. I would like to quietly show this to every third hatch osprey!!!!!!!! It always lifts my spirits when it has been a rough day in Bird World.

Dennis Puleston was a remarkable man who spotted the decline of the Osprey populations in the US due to DDT.

Sadly, the Little Bob at the Loch of the Lowes fell victim to a brutal Big sibling that refused to let him eat and who finally killed him this morning shortly after 0530. Little Bob was alive in the image below, barely, from not having eaten in at least three days.

Laddie LM12 arrives on the nest but flies away. No fish.

Big Bob brutally attacks Little Bob and kills him.

Blue NC0 stares at the body of her Little one. It has not been a good year for this wee one who, like the others, just wanted some fish. It is unclear why there is so few fish coming to this nest. It has been a discussion about the other nests and people are conflicted. Is it intruders? has the loch not got the fish? is something going on with Laddie? All of the other nests are not having difficulties. Fly high Little one, fly high.

Sadly my list of siblicide victims this year is getting longer.

Blue NC0 looks worn out and hungry. She is hardwired, like all other Osprey Mums not to interfere. She looks down at her wee little babe. So sad. I do hope that whatever is troubling this nest that it goes away so that this family can heal.

There is another nest that remains worrisome.

To the relief of everyone cheering Little Bit 17 on at the ND-LEEF nest, that camera is back working. It is unclear if 17 got any food since the camera went down but he was seen doing wingersizing according to many of the chatters who watch the camera. He is not acting like the third hatch at Loch of the Lowes. 17 seems fine. I will not presume anything but let us all hope that if it is cooler tomorrow – which they say it will be – that the fish will be flying onto this nest. — I want to be optimistic. Many third hatches benefit from the older ones fledging. It seems both 15 and 16 are branching —- and not wanting to sound nasty but it would be nice if they would take a 2 day trip to see the beautiful area where their nest is! Little Bit could eat it all!

The eaglets on this nest are the following ages. ND 15 is 76 days old, ND16 75 days old, and ND17 is 71 days old. Little Bit is not ready to fledge. His tail needs to grow more. The feathers on his head are growing longer and covering up the bald spots caused by 16’s scalpings. This Little one has worked so hard to live. I want to believe I am seeing something of a crop under his beak and that he did get some nourishment today. Hang in there Little Buddy!

The streaming cam is also back up at the Cape Henlopen State Park Osprey Platform. It was a very interesting Tuesday morning. The female intruder with the torn feathers was in the nest. Another osprey landed on the nest and she got rid of them quickly. A third bird or was it this one that landed ?? could be seen flying by the nest on several occasions to the left of the platform.

The bird that almost looks like I cute and pasted it on was quickly shooed away by the female intruder on the nest. From that behaviour we might assume that this was not a bird associated with her.

She removes the body of the oldest and largest of those beautiful chicks from the nest.

As the sun was setting on Lewes, Delaware, the female intruder has now cleared the nest of any remnants of its former occupants. It is just gut wrenching what has happened here. I do wonder if the Mum is alive and if it is her flying to the nest? No one was at the nest overnight.

I have been praising Betty on the Mlade Buky White Stork next in The Czech Republic for not eliminating the smallest, the fifth storklet. Well, she has now done so. Let us hope that all four remaining chicks thrive! (The storklet did not survive the 9 metre/30 ft drop but it was quick, not like starving to death on the nest).

There is wonderful news coming out of Cal Falcons. Laurentium is one of Annie and Grinnell’s fledglings. She has a nest on Alcatraz. She has successfully fledged chicks in years before but not it is confirmed that she has two healthy grand chicks for Annie and Grinnell again. How wonderful!

I have neglected the Foulshaw Moss nest this year despite the fact that it is one of my favourites. Last year White YW and Blue 35 successfully fledged 3 osplets including Tiny Little Bob, Blue 463. The chicks below are around the 3 week period. They are healthy and doing well! Excellent parents. I cannot say enough good things about them.

I do not like the cam. You cannot rewind so if you don’t see it, the event is gone. Or if you do see it and don’t get a screen shot it is gone, too. That style of camera is very annoying if you are trying to document events on a nest.

Congratulations to everyone at the Ithaca Peregrine Falcon scrape. They had their first fledge today. It was Percy! One more eyases to go. How exciting. Falcon Watch Utica posted this gorgeous picture of Percy taking off. Look – those legs are held tight against the body and the feathers are in perfect shape. What a wonderfully healthy fledgling!

Even before the three Bobs had their breakfast Wednesday morning, Telyn was chasing after an intruder with feather wear – perhaps a moulting bird. Emyr Evans wants him to come back so they can get a ring number and ID the bird. He is evading all of the cameras. Emyr believes it is Teifi and if so, it is Telyn and Idris’s 2020 hatch come home to the natal nest. After, Idris brings in a lovely sea bass for Telyn and the kids.

Emyr Evans posted this on the 23rd of May. I think he will be updating his number after the intruder this morning to 8. Tegid – of the white egg – is one of my favourite hatches. Lovely to see his son back!

There was an intruder at the Llyn Brenig osprey nest. LM6 just about tore the nest up when Blue 416 from the Lake District arrived. Gracious. I thought she was going to toss the two wee chicks out, too. Lots of two years old successfully returning this year (like this one) causing mischief.

Aran was up early fishing for Mrs G and the gang.

Everything seems fine on the Glaslyn nest.

Sentry returned to the Redding Bald Eagle nest on 14 June after fledging on the 11th. He was tired and spent the night with Star in the nest sleeping duckling style. Star has yet to fledge.

It is getting to be time to check in with some of the Australian nests. Dad brought Mum a very nice fish on the nest. Oh, she looks so good. Last year she took raised the Port Lincoln three – Bazza, Falky, and our dear Ervie.

Beautiful Diamond with a full crop after a prey gift from Xavier at the Charles Sturt University falcon cam in Orange, Australia.

Lady incubating the two eggs of hers and Dad’s on the WBSE nest in the Sydney Olympic Forest. If you look close, you will see Dad sleeping and protecting the nest on the parent branch.

The CBD 367 Collins Street Falcon cam will not be back on line until September. It is usually started once eggs are laid.

Fledge watch started yesterday for the Cal Falcons. Here is Grinnell Jr with his super crop last evening! Looks like he is going to fly anywhere! So cute.

Thank you for joining me. This is a very early Wednesday morning check in. I will have a later report Wednesday evening. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam and/or FB announcements where I took my screen captures: Sea Eagles@BirdLife Australia Discovery Centre, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam, Port Lincoln Osprey, Friends of Redding Eagles, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dfyi Osprey Project, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and Scottish Wildlife Trust, ND-LEEF, Cape Henlopen State Park Ospreys, Llyn Brenig Ospreys, Emyr Evans, Falcon Watch Utica, Mlade Buky, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust, and Cal Falcons.

Tragedy to tragedy. Late Monday and early Tuesday in Bird World

13-14 June 2022

The Cape Henlopen State Park Osprey nest kept me occupied for a large part of Monday . It is a very complicated situation. There are two intruder birds. They are distinctive in the very thick eye band. One has quite a good necklace and the other does not. Their eyes are close and often look like when we say ‘snake eyes’.

As the sun was setting both of the adult birds were on the nest. You can see their distinctive eye bands that are thick and go right to the shoulder. Except for their necklaces you might want to think they are twins.

One of the birds has some feather damage. It is the one who moved the chicks out of the nest. At first I thought the little chick had its wing caught in the talon but watching the bird try to remove and then in a second try achieve getting one of the bigger chicks off the nest – it was deliberate. She just didn’t have a good hold on that wee third hatch and it is probably – or was – at the base of the platform.

This bird has some interesting feather damage in at least two areas. I hope to get someone who knows about feather issues to examine the photo. It looks like a section around the scapula V on the right has been cut or torn or there are feathers missing. You can see the feather on the right hanging. The bird has flown on and off the nest carrying the chicks but returns quickly so she is just dumping them close by.

It appears that there is a third bird that is around the nest that these two are concerned about and it could be the Mum of the three dead chicks. Of course, this is simply speculation on my part. We have not seen that bird and none are ringed.

There are no adult ospreys on the Cape Helopen Osprey nest tonight, 13 June.

I have received word from ‘A’ and ‘EJ’ that the two intruders were at the Henlopen Osprey nest this morning and at one time a fish was brought and removed. The female intruder has also removed the third dead osplet from the nest. ‘A’ mentions the third osprey that has been bothering me. Is it Mum? is she injured? If it is her – our hearts go out to her. She has sadly lost her entire family.

I remember in an online discussion and chat with Sean and Lynn at Cal Falcons, they mentioned that the problem with the success of reintroducing these species is that there are too many birds. There are territorial fights, etc. Perhaps also it is the amount of habitat loss due to population growth and building, climate change and being able to get adequate food that is also a problem. For the Osprey there is then the issue of trees. Unlike Bald Eagles, Ospreys like to have their nests at the top of a dead tree. So many trees have been lost to deforestation and wildfires and in my community if someone sees a dead tree, it is cut down. Only in the marshes and mangroves do I see them. In South Australia they are busy building platforms in good places for the Ospreys if they have seen Ospreys nesting like Turnby Island. The new platform is up and the Ospreys are already on it along with most of their old nest. Do we need to get building more platforms? And if lakes and streams can be stocked for people to go fishing, what about the birds? It does appear – from many nests – that the success of both the Osprey and Eagle reintroduction programmes have caused issues for established nests – some outright tragedies. There must be some solutions.

Little Bob at the Loch of the Lowes was shut out from the evening feeding. Indeed, he had not eaten all day Monday that I am aware. Both Little and Middle stayed well out of the way of Big and just let him eat. Then Middle went up. By the time Little got up to the table the fish was gone. If this is a problem with Laddie not bringing in enough fish now – then Blue NC0 needs to step up the game and go fishing.

Big ate almost all that fish and has a big crop and so does Middle. Poor wee Bob. They can last for several days. We have seen this on many nests but it is time Little Bob had a good feed. Fingers crossed for Tuesday.

This is Blue NC0 defending the nest and chicks against the intruder.

The situation at the Loch of the Lowes has not improved. There is a ringed intruder and as such Laddie and Blue NC0 are both dealing with that. A fish finally came in at 16:00 but both Little and Middle Bob are getting pounded. Little Bob did not even raise its head and beg for food. There are any number of people worrying about this nest. I will be checking on it later. Some of the Osprey groups are already posting thoughts for Little Bob – he cannot go much longer if he is to live. I do not think he will make it either. So sad. Middle ate yesterday.

I started making a list of all the sadness at the nests this year and will post it later today. It has been a year of tragedy.

The West End fledglings – Ahote and Kana’kini – are really using their wings and learning how to land. Two of the chicks on the natal nest watch one of the siblings (I believe it is Kana’kini) fly off the nest and land on Transmitter Rock.

Perfect landing.

Kana’kini was still on Wray’s Rock Tuesday morning. She had flown there on Monday. Tuesday morning Ahote and Sky were on the natal nest when a fish delivery came in at 05:42. Waiting for Sky to fledge.

Kana’kini and Ahote have since flown off leaving Sky on the natal nest.

At the Two Harbours nest of Chase and Cholyn, Lancer will be 10 weeks old (70 days) tomorrow, the 15th. Cholyn is still flying in to feed their big girl!

There are big storms moving through the area of the ND-LEEF nest. The camera is out of sorts. This could seriously impact any prey deliveries for tomorrow. Little Bit 17 really needs a good meal tomorrow.

The system is going to impact a large area that have nests.

The camera is down because of the storm at the ND-LEEF nest. The eaglets are ND15 75 days old, ND16 74 days old and Little Bit ND17 is 70 days old. It sure would be a shame to lose this little fighter now. What a time to have a storm – backed up with days of little food. My goodness.

I haven’t checked on E1 and Nancy at the MN-DNR nest lately. Nancy made a prey delivery, E1 mantled quickly and was very aggressive to the adult. This is normal behaviour in eaglets getting ready to fledge.

There was a lot of strong winds and rain over night at the MN-DNR. The system is due to be about the same as the one in my city. It will calm down and may begin again. E1 survived it fine – thank goodness.

At the nest of Big Red and Arthur, it appears that the only eyas left to fledge is L4. Little cutie pie. And little cutie pie took advantage of having its big siblings off flying and getting prey elsewhere to eat up two prey items on the nest and get an enormous crop! Sometimes there are advantages to having your other siblings fledge. This might also work for Little Bit if everything came come together to get the parents able to find prey to deliver. I understand that this time of year at this particular nest prey deliveries suffer.

Big Red’s kids do not have that problem. Arthur is excellent at delivering food and Big Red is often hunting herself. They did a marvellous job this year. Amazing.

L4 could fledge. He has 5 going on 6 dark stripes and he is 47 days old. remember the average age of fledge is 46.5 days at this nest.

I love the stretching exercises after the meal. He stretched both sides like this.

The UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys are not sleeping on the natal nest tonight.

The adults are dropping off fish on the nest and both of the fledglings, Big and Middle, make their way there when they see the parents flying in that direction. Big had the fish and then Middle got tired of waiting and took it. Both had a decent feed. These two are doing fantastic.

It is always good to remember that what you want to see are the chicks being fed by the parents on the nest after fledge. At other times, they will feed them off nest like they did with Little MiniO at Captiva. Often times the fledglings bolt and well, they need to get home. You might recall if you watched the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest that Legacy (2021) was missing for about six days. She was so glad to find home she didn’t leave for another month!

It is early morning in The Czech Republic and Betty is feeding the four White storklets at the Mlade Buky nest. Oh, look. They are getting their pin feathers. Fantastic. Note: The smallest, the 5th storklet was eliminated on Sunday.

It is also lousy weather in Estonia but Karl II has been out fishing for these babies. Did you know he flies 10 km to get the little fish? It is monitored by his tracker.

Liz did a lovely – and short video (I always appreciate her short videos getting right to the heart of the matter) – of the three Black storklets of Jan and Janika’s in care late Tuesday having a meal. They are doing so very well. I think that you are witnessing an intervention that is going to go very, very well.

All three osplets on the nest of Aran and Mrs G in the Glaslyn Valley are doing quite fine. Just look at that face of Mrs G. I certainly would not want to mess with this Osprey Mum. In the second image all have crops after their afternoon tea time meal.

Idris taking the head off of the tea time fish for Telyn and the three Bobs. There is definitely not a problem at this nest!

Little Bob is in the middle and Telyn has been feeding him – and he will be fed til his crop is full! (or they run out of fish)

Llyn Brenig Ospreys have had their troubles. The third hatch died but the two surviving osplets appear to be doing very well. Let us hope that the horrible weather that has swept through the nests dissipates and gives these families a break!

The two surviving osplets at the Loch Arkaig nest have been enjoying all that nice fish that Louis brings in. The tea time one was a little too close to the lads or lasses but both got fed. Big Bob looks like he could be a problem. Let us hope that he isn’t! There is always fish on this nest of Dorcha and Louis.

They have had their problems up at Llyn Clywedog but it looks like those are behind them. Dylan brought in a huge Mullet for Seren and the three Bobs at 16:00:03. Just look at their crops after their tea.

That is a hop, skip, and jump through the nests with troubles and some of those that are doing so well. Seeing those three at Llyn Clywedog after the fear that Dylan was missing just warms the heart.

Last, Alden delivered what appears to be a pigeon. Annie gets it and this translates into a food fight between Lindsay and Grinnell, Jr. Neither have fledged yet but it is just morning in California! Fledge watch at Cal Falcons.

We may never know what ultimately happens at the Cape Henlopen State Park Osprey nest until we see who is on the nest for the next breeding season. If it is Mum who has been trying to get her nest back, let us hope that she either does so safely or she leaves the territory in good health to find another nest and mate.

I am working on two different pieces for you. One of Wildlife Rehabilitation Centres and their importance and another on the birds that we have lost since last 1 July. It is sadly a very long list. I had hoped to have the one on the rehabilitation centres finished this week but the events at some of the nests took over.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages or videos that I have captured and used for this blog: Liz M, Cape Henlopen State Park Ospreys, Cornell RTH Cam, ND-LEEF, Friends of the Loch of the Lowes and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, CarnyXWild, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dfyi Osprey Project, MN-DNR, Explore.org and the Institute for Wildlife Studies, Llyn Brenig Ospreys, Cal Falcons, Llyn Brenig Ospreys, Eagle Club of Estonia, Mlade Buky White Storks, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, and NOAA.

Cape Henlopen Osprey, update

13 June 2022

The male osprey disappeared last week. The female got food – five fish for the chicks last Wednesday. On Friday, she was attacked twice in the intruders. The second time the female did not return. This is an image from that second attack. There is no confirmation on what has happened to the 20 year old father or the mother of the chicks. The three chicks died of starvation. The intruders would not feed them and, indeed, while the chicks begged food from them it is not natural for a couple to feed and raise another couple’s offspring. Sadly.

We do not know if the parents are dead, injured, or alive and not returning. I have asked and been told that it is highly unlikely that the female would abandon her chicks so that she must be injured or dead.

In the image below the chicks look on as their mother battles with the intruder.

There has been activity at the Cape Henlopen Osprey nest since I posted my blog this morning – Monday 13 June.

Early on Monday there was no one perching on the nest and the bodies of the three osplets were there.

Then two Ospreys arrive on the nest. One is the intruder female at the right. Who is the other adult? Is this her mate? She appears to be the one coming and going from the nest the most but it is highly possible that the male is close by.

I received word from ‘EJ’ that at around 08:15, the body of the chick in the middle was removed from the nest. Did it get caught on the talon and was removed from the nest but not on purpose?

I ask about the accidental removal as it appears that the tip of the wing is caught on the talon and that the body is being pulled along rather than a committed grip on the corpse.

The adult osprey that removed the body of the chick in the middle returned very quickly to the nest and began looking at the body of the youngest chick that had died on Saturday.

A little later the bodies of the two chicks are on the nest when this osprey looks at us. Note that there is not a big necklace.

This is the image of the intruder female who would not feed the chicks on Sunday. I believe this to be the adult osprey that removed the body of the chick.

This is a photography of the two parents of the three dead chicks.

The intruder adult continues to fly on and off the Henlopen Osprey nest. As I write both bodies of the other two chicks remain in the nest. It is 10:11 CDT.

Will the other bodies be removed? Who is that second osprey? is it the male partner of the intruding female? We wait.

Thank you for joining me in what has become a tragic mystery at Cape Henlopen.

Thank you to the Cape Henlopen State Park for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

Big fledges at UFlorida-Gainesville and other brief news from Bird World

2-3 June 2022

It has been a good morning for the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest!

Big has been wanting to fly – itching to get up in the air. Thanks to ‘R’ who sent me the time stamp I was able to rewind and see her go once I woke up this morning, Friday 3 June. It was 09:03:06. Big returned and did a wee bit of a crash landing on Middle at 09:03:25. She took off for her second flight at 09:09:07. Middle is watching. He will not want to miss the fun for long!

There she goes!

She’s up!

Middle is watching!

“Big sister, you need to practice that landing!”

And she’s off for the second flight. Congratulations Big! You are a fledgling. I wonder when Middle is going to join you?

That is the headliner for Friday morning. Fantastic news for the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey group.

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Sometimes I am shocked by the passage of City By-laws but today I am applauding my City’s new ban on the use of sticky glue traps and rodenticide! (We have long had a ban on allowing cats outside). If the Province would come in and ban lead in fishing and hunting equipment that would be a giant step to help the birds that migrate here for the summer leaving in the early fall. We do not have the lead issues that the US has because the larger raptors have migrated to the South by the time hunting season comes but it certainly impacts the raptors that remain and that now includes some Bald Eagles.

I don’t like the word ‘outside’ because it implies that you can use the rodenticide and glue traps inside. Must write the City Council!

There is updated news coming out of Australia about White-Bellied Sea Eagle WBSE27.

Talk about a gorgeous bird.

One of the adults came to the ND-LEEF nest with a fish at 21:02:37. 15 got the fish. Little Bit was watching. Then 16 stole it. As Little Bit 17 went to go to the porch, 15 attacked him. Little Bit goes on the porch area where Mum feeds him ‘something’ – can’t see just the motions of feeding from the tail. Mum went to get the fish from 16 to feed Little Bit and 16 snipped at Mum. At one point, 15 stole a piece of fish from 16. Little Bit tried to steal the fish a couple of times from 16 around 21:22. 16 moved with the fish to the rim at the top and horked down the rest. Mum took the old bird away from 15 and horked it. I have a feeling that this entire family is hungry!

The fish has arrived.

It is actually a nice chunk of fish. Little Bit is over in his corner by the tree. Mum has gone to the porch.

Mum is feeding Little Bit 17 something on the porch.

Little Bit is smart. He stayed in the porch area while Mum tried to steal the fish from ND16.

Mum goes back to feeding Little Bit whatever it is on the porch. I am thinking some of the road kill.

Mum goes to see what 15 has and she takes it – the dry remains of the Rye bird from yesterday. Mum is very hungry and she horks it. Meanwhile Little Bit is reading the environment.

Little Bit went to try and snatch the fish tail from 16. He tried twice. He did not succeed but he did show his Mum that he is brave and will try to get food. This is important.

It appears that the adults and two of the chicks are very hungry. 16 has consistently taken the prey. Everyone had something but oh how nice it would be for all of them – the parents, too – if quite a load of fish came in tomorrow. Positive wishes!

Friday morning Little Bit 17 has grabbed a fish off the nest and pulled it over by the tree leading to the porch and ate it. The time was 08:36:02. It must have been 15 looking at the fish because he did not do anything to harm Little Bit.

Little Bit is eating that nice fish!

Little Bit is still working on that fish!

It is a very windy morning at the National Park at Sooma in Estonia. Mum Kalju and the female chick, Margit, are just waking up. Margit is 5 weeks and 1 day old today. She is very, very special. The adults – Helju and Kalju have been together for three breeding seasons. Margit is only the second chick to survive. If you watch you will notice how tender both Helju and Kalju are with their baby.

Just look at Mum Kalju looking at her sleeping eaglet with such loving eyes!

Here is the link to this camera in the beautiful forest area of the park.

Sadly, in one of the Black Stork nests in Estonia with five chicks, the male has been missing since 1 June – two days. It is the nest of Jan and Janika in Jegova County. Here is a picture of Jan feeding the chicks on the 27th of May.

Here is a video of the five storklets being fed on 1 June.

This is such a very bad situation. Urmas loves these Black Storks and has worked hard to find ways to save nests from tragedy in the past. This is the statement that he made today:

“I’m in touch with situation here, but don’t know more as you.
Think in course of evolution there is no solution for disappearing of one adult. But there is working probably the instinct, that other adult will not leave easily chicks alone. Up to a point, of course. Other sides, predators are around and have to use every gift provided.
I have no good solution for case if Jan will not come at all. It is possible to make nice view here and rise up the chicks artificially, but these storks will be not really wild. We do not have experiences and technical sources to make it properly. Theoretically, it is possible to provide fish for Janika and she would feed chicks well, but problematic is how to make those fish quickly findable, discoverable for Janika? We do not know, where she forages usually as territory is huge and no any glue to install a fish-basket…
There was a fish basket for three weeks since beginning of May, in less as one km from this nest, in quite open place on stream. But no storks visited it, so removed the basket and placed in another territory.”

It might be possible for volunteers to do what they did at Mlade Buky which was to supply fish directly onto the nest for the chicks and a fish table for the parents. Malde Buky in The Czech Republic was successful but that nest had easy access – right by the houses in the city.

This has been a year where there have been so many challenges but one of the main ones has been intruders killing off one of the adults at a critical time in the breeding season. Just so many this year. It is so sad.

My friend Wicky sends me book recommendations and links to articles. I was going to spending some time talking about a new book, The Hawk’s Way. Encounters with Fierce Beauty by Sy Montgomery but she has sent me another link and reminded me to post the one for you that I had found! It is so hot in India that birds are falling from the sky dead because of climate change.

ttps://www.vice.com/en/article/qjbyk5/birds-heat-stroke-deadly-heat-wave-india?campaign_id=9&emc=edit_nn_20220602&instance_id=62964&nl=the-morning&regi_id=72371317&segment_id=93971&te=1&user_id=2f9327403f41fd48179725a261b46825

Climate change is impacting all of our feathered friends in so many ways – warming of oceans, droughts, the warming of rivers and streams where Montana Ospreys used to get their fish, etc. Another thing going hand in hand with intruders – everyone wants a nest in a good territory – and the ill effects that they have on our bird families.

We are waiting for the first fledge at the nest of Big Red and Arthur on the Cornell campus. L1 is really looking like she wants to flight just like Big at UFlorida! What a beautiful morning sunrise on the four who are busy preening those feathers to keep them in tip top shape. Thursday night was the first night that Big Red did not sleep at the nest. Things are moving forward.

There is a storm brewing in Wales with the temperatures dropping. There is also hail being reported. Hang on everyone.

All of the males are busy getting fish on the nests before it hits. The nests have all done well. It is quite a different start to the breeding season so far – let’s hope that wet cold weather dissipates soon. The first egg for the Pont Cresor nest for Aeron Z2 and Blue 014 is 35 days old. Looking for hatch.

Idris is a great provider for Telyn and the chicks at the Dyfi nest. The Bobs are full and sleepy and Telyn is going to have some lunch after the most recent delivery.

Aran has delivered a whopper to Mrs G and the kids at the Glaslyn Valley nest. Just look at the size of that fish!!!!!!!! By evening that fish will be gone.

Aran looks down at his three kids with love.

The temperatures are also dropping at the Llyn Clywedog Osprey nest of Dylan and Seren. Their chicks are also doing fantastic after the early scare of Dylan missing for more than a day during bad weather.

The textures and colours of the two are interesting.

Laddie is busy being Daddy Door Dash Fish delivery person, too. The three chicks on the Loch of the Lowes nest are doing great!

It has been a really good morning for most of the nests. Hopefully that storm coming straight in to Wales will not do any damage! Those great Mums will be hunkered down over those wee chicks. Congratulations again to UFlorida-Gainesville on their first fledge. No doubt Middle is going to follow quickly. It is lovely to see Little Bit get the most of an entire fish. So happy. Jan has not returned to the Black Stork nest and Urmas is going to try a fish basket but it is possible it is too late. So sad.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Sea Eagles @ Birdlife Discovery Centre, ND-LEEF, Eagle Club of Estonia, Dyfi Osprey Project, Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Scottish Wildlife Trust, CarnyXWild, and Cornell Bird Lab RTH.

Late Tuesday in Bird World

24 May 2022

Oh, it was around 23 degrees C and just a gorgeous sunny day for a walk around one of our nature centres. Earlier, when we had snow, there was a Canada Goose on one of the artificial nests. She was not there but evidence of the downy lining remained. I wonder if the eggs hatched? No sign of the adults. In other areas, geese were incubating eggs – some on the ground and some in the artificial nests. I wonder if these are second clutches? or first? There was no one to ask. The American Goldfinches, Yellow Warblers, Red-winged Blackbirds, Yellow Rumped Warblers were everywhere along with lots and lots of Purple Martins. The whole forest was a symphony of bird vocalizations!

Mr Goose was being for security guard for his mate in the basket nest.
Mother Goose incubating her eggs.
Mother Goose out on the island incubating her eggs.
Yellow Warbler
Yellow-Rumped Warbler

It has been such a sad day for some of the nests and if it is happening on the streaming cams, I wonder how often these occurrences happen in the wild. A raccoon scaled the pole to the XCel Energy Bald Eagle Nest in Colorado and took one of the juveniles. This is the latest report on that incident:

‘A’ was watching the Fort Murray Osprey nest when an owl flew on to the nest. It killed and ate one of the osplets right there! There is the owl landing on the nest at Lake Murray.

These are incredibly sad incidents and in both cases, it appears that there was not an adult at the site.

Raccoons are known to eat all manner of things including rabbits but I have personally never heard of them pulling an eaglet off a nest and eating it. Are we seeing the beginning of a huge problem with the depletion of available prey?

The two larger siblings on the ND-LEEF nest really like to be fed by Mum. Little Bit 17 is very happy to have a fish that has been unzipped to eat. A fish came on the nest around 17:00. Mum fed the two big siblings. Little Bit is very good at watching and reading its environment. The older siblings have been cranky due to the heat. He got a few pieces of fish at the beginning and then moved way around the side and was getting fed when Mum moved. In one instance, an older sibling grabbed a piece of fish and Mum grabbed it back and Little Bit got it. Very interesting. Little Bit had a nice crop at the end – that is perfect.

Little Bit is making its way cautiously along the rim of the nest. Watching. He will snatch and grab some bites of fish.

Can you find Little Bit 17?

So everything seems pretty good at the ND-LEEF nest! Wonderful.

Laddie, LM12’s eye, is much better. He has been delivering fish to the Loch of the Lowes nest where him and Blue NC0 have three nestlings. It is not clear to me but it has been mentioned that in at least one feeding the third chick did not get fed. Just a warning about this nest. That is what happened last year and the wee one perished. Mind you, Blue NC0 is a relatively new mother. She is fantastic at fishing so fingers crossed.

That eye of Laddie’s looks as good as new.

At the Dyfi Nest in Wales, Idris is not only know for his great fishing skills but he loves to incubate and take care of the chicks. Today, when the first was hatching, Idris was insisting on incubating! He has a lot of tactics to try and get Telyn up off those eggs.

And Telyn has her tricks to try and get him up!!!!! These two are way too funny.

Mum has been on the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest this afternoon. I could not find a big fish on rewind but both chicks appeared to have eaten recently. No worries about them.

Rosie and Richmond’s two osplets are 8 days old now. Most of the time they behave themselves but there has been some bopping between them that seems to have started yesterday, on day 7. I am not concerned. Richmond is a good provider and this behaviour will stop. Notice that they are losing the fluffy baby down and will be moving into the Reptilian phase soon, too soon.

They look so adorable when they are being nice!

The two little eyases at Cal Falcons scrape of Annie and Alden are loving flapping their wings.

They are also getting curious about what is outside that open door!

The Manchester NH eyases are also flapping their wings. Sometimes there is downy fluff flying everywhere adding to the feather fed they already sleep on.

Here is a lovely video of the three Peregrine Falcon chicks at the Great Spirit Bluff scrape having dinner. So cute.

Nancy and E1, Harriet, have eaten today. Thank goodness the intruders that have been around allowed Nancy time to go out and get some prey. It is hard being a single parent to a growing eaglet with sometimes dangerous intruders.

Beautiful Lena from the Captiva Osprey Platform. It was a good year despite the mysterious death of the eldest osplet, Big. Middle Little and Little Mini fledged and are doing well. Mum desires a good rest and a day at the spa!

Big Red and Arthur’s four eyases at the Red-tail Hawk nest are really getting their juvenile feathers. Several are wing flapping and all are eating very well!

Unlike Blue NC0 at Loch of the Lowes, Big Red will stretch to get to a hungry chick!

Rita and Ron are still providing fish for R2 on the nest in the Miami Zoo. How wonderful. You can pop in there early or re-wind and see them.

R2 will eventually arrive and another big fish will come to the nest at 1330.

Thank you so much for joining me for a spin around some of the nests. still more to check on! I hope everyone has had a lovely day. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Lake Murray Ospreys, ND-LEEF, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Captiva Ospreys, Scottish Wildlife Trust, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Explore.Org, MN-DNR, Wildlife Rescue of Dade County, Cal Falcons, Bald Eagles 101, Dyfi Osprey Project, Peregrine Networks, SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon.

Early Tuesday in Bird World

24 May 2022

Good Afternoon everyone. I hope each of you had a very lovely start to the week yesterday. This has really been quite the year for the birds on the streaming cams around the world. I haven’t ever seen a year like it. At the end of the season we will touch on every nest and see if there was an incident. You can help me! Start making your lists.

First up. Let’s check on the condition of Laddie LM12″s eye is in this morning if the camera can catch him looking the right way. Was he able to bring in more fish for Blue NC0 and the three nestlings?

Yes! Was so happy to see this great improvement over night. It reminded me of when Bella returned to her nest with Smitty after an altercation with another intruder. The wee chicks are also eating well – all three of them. Such a relief, Laddie!

They are all fish crying. Just look at the Bobs. Blue NC0 is extremely loud. You could hear her to Glasgow!!!!!!! Laddie did deliver another fish. For some reason NC0 flew off the nest with it and did not bring it back. Ugh.

Horrific news is coming in from Colorado’s Fort St Vrain Bald Eagle nest. One of the eaglets was pulled off the nest by a raccoon! Search parties have gone out to look for the wee one.

These are the images from the incident. The eaglet was very brave. The question is: where are the adults when this is happening?!

There has been so many incidents with intruders. We have Laddie with the eye, the eaglet taken off its nest by a raccoon (I will now add raccoons to the list of ways eaglets and other raptors can be killed), and as we celebrate DC 9 being 8 weeks old, Lotus is missing. Mr President celebrated the day by bringing in food and by guarding the nest.

One of the nests that I have watched and – well, the Venice Golf and Country Club Ospreys – fell through the crack. It seems I reported the happenings on the nest only a couple of times. We were, at one time, worried about the third hatch on that nest. There was a lot of food competition. I am happy to report that the first osplet fledged on 30 April and the others following within days. This was a nest to celebrate that event for sure.

The osplet on the left, not flapping its wings, actually flaps its wings and flies off the nest to the surprise of the other two.

The parents continue to provide food on the nest for their babies. As far as I know all three were on the nest today.

It just couldn’t be any better for ND17, Little Bit. A fish came on the nest and the adult is feeding 17. Despite the other siblings not being interested, Little Bit is very aggressive in his snatch and grab movements especially around 18:19. These actions will help him later on when eagles are fighting for prey items in the wild. It is clear that he is still very nervous around the big siblings. At 18:35 he has a very large crop! 17 has now had at least four big meals today – four! (There could have been five).

The adult feeds almost all the prey item to Little Bit before one of the older siblings comes over to get some bites.

Little Bit has a very large crop at 18:32 but he is still up by mom in case there is more food! Too funny.

Little Bit is using a turtle shell for a pillow – but even more important,, he is sleeping on his ‘prey stash’. Smart Little Bit 17.

I want everyone to really give Little Bit 17 a big cheer. This morning a parent delivered a really large fish for self-feeding. One of the older siblings pecked at it. At 10:18:34 Little Bit takes the fish away from the big sibling!!!!!!!!!! (The big siblings do not do as well at self-feeding as 17).

At 10:26:55 Little Bit is eating the fish and the bigger sibling – I think it is 15 – joins him.

Two fish deliveries that I have seen. Little Bit 17 eats from 10:18-10:27 when he foregoes the one fish to the elder sibling (very peaceful). Another fish arrives from Mum and Little Bit feeds on it from 10:46-11:15. Typically Mum will come in and feed them later but, for now, they need to be learning these skills. Little Bit is doing great. He just needs to remember to hold down the fish with his talons! This nest has had a miraculous change in the past 5 days.

At 12:09 Little Bit finds some fish scraps – perfect size in the nest!

The streaming cam for the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest is up and running again since the lightning storm. If you go on rewind, you get all manner of days. I tried to catch the lightning and rain from Sunday night but to no avail in the image below.

They both survived nicely and it is getting more and more difficult to tell who is who unless you watch their behaviour (Middle still grabs the food) and look closely at the bands growing on their tails.

It is good to see them!

Friends of Big Bear Valley – the home of Jackie and Shadow and Spirit – have put a call for your help. Here is the appeal:

One of Dyson’s favourite friends ‘A’ has sent us news of Peregrine Falcon scrape on top of a government building in Japan. There are many falcons and beautiful hawks scattered over the islands of Japan and it would be wonderful if some had streaming cams. ‘A’ tells me the demands are growing so we are hoping that one of the companies will start a trend!

There are five little falcons!!!!!

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20170427/p2a/00m/0na/004000c

Everyone at Manton Bay is itchy! So far no fighting amongst the chicks! There is, of course, with Blue 33 fishing lots of food on the nest for Maya and the wee ones.

Everyone is watching the nest of Idris and Telyn at Dyfi Osprey platform in Wales today. The first pip of the three eggs came at 16:24.

That is a lot to take in on one morning. Great relief that Laddie’s eye is healing. He has three screaming osplets in the nest – who by the sounds of them – will be as loud as NC0 when they want fish. Too funny. The chicks at Gainesville did great during the storm and Little Middle is just the bravest little eaglet I have seen. The people searching for the eaglet at Fort St Vrain have found feathers, nothing more. So very, very sad. It seems to me that there are raccoon baffles that can be put on a platform. Am I dreaming that? And please read the open appeal from FOBBV and support them if you feel so inclined.

The garden has been very, very busy with migrating visitors. Yesterday there were American Goldfinch and Rose-breasted Gosbeaks. Little Red’s new penthouse will be moved around to see if I can entice him to move in. It is Dyson that is causing all the mischief – of course, it is Dyson! I found a very old birdfeeder that my neighbour made decades ago in the shed. Filled it with White Millet and guess who found it first thing? Dyson! Now, he almost got stuck in Little Red’s new house – how did he get out? He chewed the entrance hole bigger! He almost got stuck in this new feeder, too. I had filled it up and realized I should cut the wire and get a brush for the top – left for two minutes! Dyson gets inside.

Dyson is so cheeky. he knows that I will not get mad at him so he sits in the feeder watching me.

Thank you so much for joining me. Dyson and I hope that you have a really wonderful day. We will see you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and FB pages where I took my screen captures: Scottish Wildlife Trust, Xcel Energy, NADC-AEF, VGCCO, ND-LEEF, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, LRWT, and Dyfi.

Glacier Gardens, Ervie on the nest, and other news in Bird World

19 May 2022

It has been a rather dreary damp day. The garden has been full of Orioles, Chipping Sparrows, European Starlings, and Harris Sparrows. They sure bring a lot of joy. At the same time, they let you know that your place is to fill the feeders and then get inside and do not disturb them. They can be rather loud about that. Little Red was about a metre from his new home. I do not know if he found it. Will continue to watch on and off. Fingers crossed!

Glacier Gardens Bald Eagle streaming cam is now live at the new nest of Liberty and Freedom! It is also a brand new camera.

Here is the link to the Glacier Gardens camera:

Big and Middle (known as Warrior by some) were both on the Dale Hollow nest this morning. Then Big left and Middle has been flapping his wings. Our time with them could be limited. So nice to see these two beautiful juveniles.

Yesterday it seemed that Big was up on a high branch. Middle kept looking up. If there is a fledge the camera might not catch it if they are up on those high branches.

Look how big Warrior is. After Big killed Little Bit, we did not know if Middle would make it. We can now rejoice that all is well and we can hope that he or she has an amazing and long life.

I have not seen a prey delivery today at the MN-DNR nest of Nancy. The weather is not great and it is unclear if there are any intruders about. Nancy has been up on the branch watching over the territory.

Nesting material is being delivered to the Barnegat Light Osprey nest in New Jersey today by both Duke and Daisy.

Lady and Dad both spent the night on the old Ironbark nest in the Sydney Olympic Forest where they raise their little White-Bellied Sea Eagles. Sea Eagles are the second largest raptor in Australia with the Wedge-tail Eagle being the largest. Lady and Dad normally have two eggs and fledge both chicks. That said there are birds in the forest that chase them far away so they cannot map the route to and from the nest in their GPS systems. This means the fledglings do not learn from the parents how to fish or have the opportunity to be fed on the nest and get their flying stronger. Last year WBSE 27 went into care twice and was finally trained to hunt and get their flying strong before release the last time. 28 is believed to have returned to the nest recently – to everyone’s surprise – but it was very gaunt. There can be some food competition.

If you have never heard the ‘Dawn Duet’ by the White-Bellied Sea Eagles you are in for a real treat. I taped it last year on 22 June – have a listen. The couple do this every morning at dawn to wake the forest. The chicks also join in!

Many have commented that it looks like the Manton Bay trio of Blue 33 and Maya grow right before our eyes. They are certainly moving from the soft fluffy new born nestling phase and will soon enter the dark wooly period. As the plumage changes the osplets do tend to get a little edgy. Those feathers must be really itchy and irritating. No worries – it is just ‘feather stress’ (that is what I call it). There will be no problems with siblicide on this nest!!!!!! Blue 33 has spent a lot of time on the nest with Maya and he has been feeding the chicks every once in awhile.

They are considered to be a Power Couple in the Osprey World. They are certainly very strong together.

Maya was first seen at Rutland in the summer of 2009. She is the only Rutland osprey to have a name. The letters for Maya come from Manton Bay (first and last two letters to form Maya). The Greek word ‘Maia’ means ‘coming of spring’. Maya successfully bred with 5R (04) from 2010 to 2013. They raised 11 chicks! At least five of those have returned to Rutland – if not more. I have not checked the last two year’s stats. Sadly, Maya’s mate did not return in 2014. She waited and then finally paired with 28 (10). She laid three eggs. But Blue 33 (11) wasn’t having it. He wanted both the nest and Maya as his mate and he persisted – finally kicking the other males eggs out of the nest!!!!! Blue 33 and Maya have been together ever since. They are utterly devoted to one another and with the exception of this year, have often arrived from their winter migration within minutes of one another. They first raised successful chicks in 2015.

So why are they considered a power couple within the Osprey world? In addition to the 3 chicks in 2015, there were 17 chicks from 2016-2020 including two years of clutches of 4 chicks raised to fledge!!!!!!!!!!! Two years of four chicks. Think about that. 2019 and 2020. In 2021, they fledged 2 making a grand total of 22 chicks fledged with three now in the nest. In total, Maya has fledged 33 chicks. Incredible. I love this nest. This year will make that 36 chicks.

Here is a video of Blue feeding the chicks. I should mention that Blue is quite different to other male ospreys; he likes to be involved in every process, spends a lot of time on the nest, sometimes feeds Maya and brings in a heck of a lot of fish!

I am a great fan of the California condors and have followed the trials, tribulations, and the victories of both Redwood Queen 190 and Iniko 1031. Everyone was waiting for Iniko to be reunited with her mother after they were separated because of the Dolan Fire. Indeed, if you do not know the story of Iniko – it is beautiful and it should give us hope that things do work out. Iniko was in the Redwood nest that her father, Kingpin and Redwood Queen shared, when the Dolan fire ripped through Big Sur in 2020. The fire raged around the nest tree. Iniko survived but was knocked out of the tree by Ninja 729. Redwood Queen came to the rescue! Iniko was taken into care at the Los Angeles Zoo supported by the Ventana Wildlife Society. Redwood Queen has a new mate, Phoenix, and they had an egg this year that was believed to be non-viable. Iniko was released on 4 December and this is the first time Mum and daughter have been seen together. Both females dive into the pack and get close to the carcass!

@Ventana Wildlife Society

The only surviving chick on the Dahlgren Osprey nest of Jack and Harriet has a nice crop at 1800 today. The heavy storms and rain caused the waters to rise and be murky. Not good if you are an osprey trying to catch a fish. The water is now clearing and let us hope everything stays on track with this one Bob.

It was nice to see Louis cuddled up with Dorcha at the Loch Arkaig Osprey nest in Scotland. The weather has been terrible – that along with a mess of intruders have really not made it a good start to the year for these two.

I can hear rain falling on Theo’s nest in Latvia and see that some work continues to be made on the nest but no Theo and no mate. Beautiful birds singing in the distance.

Black Storks are very, very rare in Latvia and Estonia. Because of this conservation status, they are much loved by the people – and many of us. Karl II and Kaia have four eggs on their Black Stork nest in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. The first egg was laid on 24 April with the last on 1 May. We should be looking for a pip in what? Incubation is normally 32-38 days (varies by author). So we are at 25 days with the oldest egg.

Here is the link to Karl and Kaia’s streaming cam:

The Black Stork nest of Jan and Janika is also in Estonia in Jogeva County. There are five eggs. The couple are, according to the chat moderator, on day 34, 31, 31 and 30 (counted from laying). Here is the link to their streaming cam:

There was one Black Stork nest that was monitored in Latvia. It was the nest of Grafs and Grafiene. I have not been able to confirm any activity for this couple this season.

There was a scary moment on the nest of Big Red and Arthur when Big Red brought in greenery at 11:47 and L3 looked as if she would fall backwards off the nest.

There is tug-o-war with some prey and the inklings of self-feeding with bits of prey left on the nest. Too cute. L4 looks on and wants to join in the fun.

I checked on Ervie a few minutes ago and he was not on the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. Then ‘B’ checked after me and Ervie flew onto the nest and is now sitting in Dad’s cave!!!!!!! Oh, we are truly blessed. Thank you ‘B’. Now anyone can go to the Port Lincoln streaming cam and see our beautiful boy!

Seeing Ervie brings tears of joy! So happy for this third hatch. He is much loved and adored by so many. Thank you ‘B’ for taking the time to send me a note! It is much appreciated. Ervie might well bring a puffer back. He seems to find them around the barge.

Thank you for joining me today. It was a whirlwind around the nests. Too many. Too much going on. It is hard to keep up with them. Take care all. If you want to see Ervie, here is the link to his camera:

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or their FB pages: Ventana Wildlife Society, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Glacier Gardens, Cornell RTH, Eagle Club of Estonia, Latvian Fund for Nature, Friends of Loch Arkaig and People’s Post Code Lottery, Barnegat Light Ospreys, Sea Eagles @BirdLife Australia Discovery Centre, MN-DNR, Dahlgren Ospreys, DHEC, and LRWT.

Three fish deliveries to UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys!

6 May 2022

It is hard to believe the change in a few days. The intruders made it virtually impossible for the parents to get food to the two osplets on the UFlorida-Gainesville nest. That caused a lot of tension on the nest with the youngest chick, Middle, often getting left out. This morning there has been three – yes 3 – fish deliveries before 0900. Unbelievable. The chicks are certainly not fighting.

The first fish came in at 0642. Both were up. At the onset it appeared that Big had the advantage. Middle moved back and forth to the middle of the nest always returning to Mum’s beak. At 0746 Middle had a nice crop.

Big is to the left of Mum with the darker plumage and Middle is to the right.

Middle has a really nice crop! Lovely.

The second fish – to the astonishment of everyone – arrived at 0810. Middle was right there but Mum moved the fish to the other side of the nest. By 0812 Big was settled in eating. Mum continued to feed Middle then alternated with Big. Middle cleaned his beak at 0827.

Once again Big is on the left and Middle is on the right. What a nice fish!

Big gets full and leave and Mum continues to feed Middle. Big will move back up again but both had nice crops and, in the end, of the two fish were fed pretty equally.

I don’t think anyone believed it but Dad flew in with another small piece of fish at 0847. Middle took advantage of the placement. Everyone ate, including Mum and all are full.

All will be nicely hydrated and full for the long hot day ahead.

It has been a really good morning for Mum and the two osplets.

The weather in Gainesville is currently 23 C reaching a cooking high of 32 C or 89.6 F. It is going to be really hot up on that nest. Dad was smart to go out early and fish while it is cool before the fish go deeper in the water. Winds are 11 kph with a humidity of 88%. Hot and humid.

Excellent news on a nest that had one incident of siblicide and a second chick suffering due to a lack of food. Today is a good day. We will celebrate that!

Thanks for joining me this morning. I am off to check on the falcons, hawks, and eagles. Take care all. See you soon!

Thank you to the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey streaming cam where I took my screen captures.

Early Wednesday in Bird World

4 May 2022

Gosh, it was sure nice to end the day on Tuesday seeing the Mum and the two osplets at the UFlorida-Gainesville nest with huge crops.

Food coma for the kids and some fish leftover for Mum! Nice. I really hope that today turns out as good as yesterday for these two.

It really is unclear again what is going on this morning. A headless piece of fish was brought to the nest by the male around 09:00. He did not feed the youngsters. Middle was right up there hungry chewing on the edge of the fish. Once again he is looking around. Is it another day of intruders causing havoc with fish deliveries and feedings? Is Mum off chasing the interloper away?

The chicks ate well and went to bed full. Ideally they are fed more often and early morning would be ideal to keep them hydrated. This is also a nice size fish so everyone gets some.

We wait to see how this sorts itself.

Intruders or interlopers are causing mischief at the nest of Richmond and Rosie, still. Indeed, there were five! They have not let Rosie or Richmond alone this breeding season and soon there will be three osplets to feed.

Miss a day or two and there are more falcons hatching! There are four at the Salisbury Cathedral in the UK. Oh, so well-behaved and cute.

There are now five eyases at the Peregrine Falcon scrape in Manchester, NH. The three oldest all hatched on the 28th of April with the wee ones on 1 May and 2 May. Often all the eggs will not hatch, – but, they did this year.

They will all be fine.

It is 11:16 nest time and there have already been three feedings!

Here is a link to this camera at Manchester.

Nancy has been on and off her perch this morning at the MN-DNR Bald Eagle nest. I have not seen a feeding. There appears to be a little food left on the nest for her and E1.

Lady Hawk did a tribute for Harry and E2 at the MN-DNR nest. He has now been away nearly a full 8 days. Another interloper/intruder is assumed. And another siblicide.

Iris, the oldest Osprey in the world, has an egg. Right now she is just as happy as she can be! Sometimes go off in this fantasy that maybe Louis will actually help her this year and not just feed Star and her chicks at the baseball park.

I wonder what the status of the Clark Fork River is this year? You might recall that last year it was almost dry in places with lots of beautiful trout dying because of the hot water. I would love to give them some of our water if it would help! If only it were that easy.

The two Red-tail Hawks at the Presidio in San Francisco are fine this morning. They are a little itchy and both of them are waiting for breakfast.

Everyone is soaked at the Dulles-Greenway Bald Eagle nest in Virginia. Our tiny eaglet of Martin and Rosa grew and is now self-feeding. Blink.

Prey delivery for the eaglet came at 09:07.

The Pittsburgh-Hayes triplets are drying out after being soggy yesterday like the Dulles-Greenway eaglet.

Spirit is getting almost as big as Mama Jackie! What a gorgeous nest they have at Big Bear Valley.

Do you remember sitting and holding your breath wishing that the egg would hatch successfully after Jackie and Shadow not having any chicks for two years? Now look at her. Spirit did hatch and it was 3 March. She is 62 days old today! Wow. Not ready to fledge but getting there. In California, the average age for fledging is 12 weeks. This also depends on the amount of prey, the sex of the eaglet, and the timing of the hatching.

There is an excellent report on the different times of hatching and fledging for Bald Eagles by latitude. Go to avianreport.com/baby-bald-eagles

One of the eaglets is self-feeding at the West End and doing a pretty good job of it. Looks like Kana’kini to me as she is larger than Sky or Ahota.

River brought a fish in and fed the two eaglets on the Dale Hollow nest. Big is really beginning to flap its wings while sitting on the railing. 66 Days old.

Most of us can’t be in San Francisco on 6 May for hatch day for Annie, Alden, and Grinnell. No worries. Sean and Lynn of CalFalcons will be holding another one of their great Q & As. Here is the information:

We are actually one day away from the first anticipated hatch day at Rutland Water’s Manton Bay nest of Blue 33 (11) and Maya. The window on the three eggs hatching is: Egg 1: 5th to 12th May; Egg 2: 8th to 15th May; and Egg 3: 11th to 18th May.

For those of you that do not know this couple, they are considered super Osprey parents! They consistently fledge all of their chicks. They have been together since 2015 and in six years they fledged 20 chicks – that doesn’t count this year!

It has been drizzly in Ithaca at the Red-tail hawk nest of Big Red and Arthur. Big Red has the four wee ones comfortably under here so they will not get wet. They cannot regulate their temperature yet and this is so important! Warm and Dry.

Fingers crossed for the osplets at the UFlorida-Gainesville nest today. Let us hope that Mum returns to feed the babes soon. (Gosh, I wish these dads would also feed the chicks…it would be so helpful).

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures today: Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Pix Cams, Montana Osprey Project, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, MN-DNR, Cal Falcons, Rutland Water LRWT, DHEC, Explore.org and The Institute for Wildlife Studies, Friends of Big Bear Valley, Peregrine Networks Live, Salisbury Cathedral Falcons, Presidio Trust, and Dulles-Greenway.