Iris is still here and more news on Tuesday in Bird World

13 September 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It is 11 degrees C (51.8 F) and will only rise to 17 C (62.6) – a great day for a long walk! As the temperatures begin to fall and the summer clothes make way for sweaters, it is a reminder to enjoy every moment outside that we can – here on the prairies of Canada. Winnipeg has been known to actually be colder than Mars in the winter so every precious minute outside is a gift.

Oh, it was a nice day yesterday. The best treat was I found the little duck. It is the tiniest wild duck I have ever seen in my life. There is still a lot of down and its wings seem ‘small’.

5 September:

12 September. The head is larger and it appears that some more feathers on the back have grown in. The little one was so busy scooping up what looks like confetti made out of leaves. It is called Duck Weed and is not the best thing to have growing on the ponds but – the ducks love it!!!!!!! In fact, ducks will eat whatever food is in front of them including pondweed, sea weed, reeds and flowers as well as berries and seeds and we have seen them eat frogs, too.

The Canada Goose couple that had lost one another the other day and were honking up a storm had taken possession of the only island in the pond. It seems that the water level is rising due to the staff at the centre draining one area to move the water to another. The geese were sharing with some Mallards but they were not moving and giving up their lease!

Aren’t they a gorgeous couple?

In past years there seem not to have been as many juvenile American Coots. They are everywhere at the nature centre – hiding in the reeds, riding on pieces of branches, or just standing quietly around a corner this year and I have seen others at ponds around the city.

You can see how thick that duckweed is on the pond. Someone of it should be cleaned with a filter – and maybe that is what the staff are doing.

Over the years the Mallards have just gotten more beautiful to me. They are common and often over-looked because of it. So many sweet little females around the edge of the pond.

Most looked nice and full from their foraging. It was bottoms up everywhere!

Oh, look at those beautiful primary and secondary feathers. Let us all hope that our wee one will have as many by the end of October.

In the Mailbox:

No questions just outpourings of love for Izzi who was the subject of yesterday’s archival photo. Oh, what a character he was and each of us that watched Xavier and Diamond’s scrape and Izzi so intently has so many stories of his antics.

Making News:

A Bald Eagle death in Canada attributed to Avian Flu. This is very sad. It was believed that the H5N1 was slowing down. Now it might be spread again by migratory birds.

The EU is being heavily criticized for not protecting marine life from overfishing. Why is this in a bird blog? Well, the birds that eat fish need them so the setting up a moratorium for fishing for human consumption might help.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/sep/12/eu-slammed-over-failure-to-protect-marine-life-from-destructive-fishing

One of my favourite books, Goshawk Summer, has won the Wainwright Nature Writing prize. James Aldred spent the early part of the pandemic in the New Forest. His assignment was to document the life of a Goshawk family. Written like a daily diary, Alden captures the solitude of the forest and the magical experiences of the chicks. “The wood holds its breath, the only sound the begging of the chicks and the gentle breeze through trees. The forest hasn’t been this peaceful for a thousand years.” Despite Aldred being a wildlife photographer there is not a single image of the Goshawks in the book but, they are not necessary. Through his words their presence is evoked as clearly as a newly cleaned window.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2022/sep/07/wainwright-nature-writing-prize-goes-to-inspirational-goshawk-summer

Two lucky Bald Eagles were helped in Maine when they were relieved from being entangled with one another. They were mid-air and crashed into the water. Both could have died with out the help of the kind couple.

Nest News:

I wasn’t quite sure where to put this wonderful news. Many of you will have already heard that Iris – thought, perhaps, to have migrated from her spring and summer home in Montana – was eating an enormous fish she had caught on the Owl Pole today in Missoula. The oldest Osprey in the world looks magnificent.

Here is a 4 minute video of this magical event.

12 September is a very special day. It is the day that Gabby normally returns to her nest near Jacksonville, Florida that she shares with her partner, Samson. Out of 4 years, 3 of the returns have been on the 12th of September. How incredible. Samson has been waiting and looking and bringing in some sticks. Gabby did not disappoint! She arrived today!!!!!!!!!!!!! The couple got busy working together getting ready for the wee eagles this year. Oh, it is so wonderful to see you home, Gabby.

Good night Samson and Gabby. All is well with the world. See you tomorrow.

Lady Hawk caught the reunion on video!

Padarn appears to still be with Idris at the Dyfi Osprey nest in Wales.

Blue 497 is still on the nest at Glaslyn and Aran delivered a really nice fish for tea time.

Did you know that both Padarn and Blue 497 hatched on the same day? It was 26 May. 497 is the oldest and Padarn is the middle chick. Both, as we can see, are still at home.

Idris brought a flat fish later and is looking around for Padarn. Is she gone?

Everything seems to be fine on the Sea Eagles nest in the Sydney Olympic Forest.

The eaglets had an early breakfast. Looks like one of the Silver Gull chicks from the old barge down the Parramatta River.

Even with a great big nest SE29 and 30 prefer to snuggle together. Lady keeps watch.

A lovely family portrait.

At the Port Lincoln Osprey barge, Mum has been rooting around in the nest and rolling those three precious eggs. It is the 14th of September in South Australia. Is it really possible that in 4 more days we could have a hatch? At times it felt like it has taken forever and on other days it seems like we just had the last egg laid. Does it feel that way to you?

At the 367 Collins Street scrape, Mum got up to stretch her legs. Gosh these birds must get stiff sitting on those eggs for so long —- yes, I am projecting human needs on them! If they had a little buzzer to remind them to stand up and get the circulation moving it might help. Oh, she made me ache as I watched her raise off those eggs. She was hardly gone…someone played a trick on this female. They told her that she had to do all the incubating herself. Hopefully she will give Dad some more time.

Oh, just when you say the birds eat off camera, someone brings a nice juicy pigeon and there you go – eaten on the nest! It is like having a sick child and taking it to the doctor and your little one is immediately well on arrival!

Migration News:

Just imagine 428 million birds making their migration flights tonight.

Remember it is time for lights out. If you want to check your own area of migration, go to this link and put in your postal code or the name of your city – sadly lower mainland US only.

Karl II’s family migration – Waba is still around the area of Manachyn and has flown a short distance south where he has discovered a little lake.

Bonus is still in the wetlands along the Prypjat River south of Makarichi.

Kaia is still around the Desna River. So all three appear to be doing well. What a glorious relief. No news from Karl II.

From the Archive:

Do you know my name? I was the only eaglet on an enormous nest. My parents names are Liberty and Freedom. When I branched and started jumping and flapping my wings, your got very worried.

I hope that your day is as lovely as ours on the Canadian Prairies. Thank you so very much for being with us today. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their blogs, tweets, videos, and streaming cams that make up my screen captures: Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Wreckhouse Weekly News, The Guardian, Bangor Daily News, Montana Ospreys and Cornell Bird Lab, NEFL-AEF, Lady Hawk, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, BirdCast, Looduskalender, and Glacier Gardens.


The eaglet was Kindness who hatched in Glacier Gardens, a large botanical garden within the Tongass National Park, Juneau, Alaska. The year was 2021.

Updates on the Ls, Red Kite shot in Epping Forest and more news in Bird World

8 September 2022

Oh, good morning to you! I hope that your week has been a really good one. I see changes…in the colour of the vines growing up the hydro poles which are now turning a beautiful burgundy and the number of children going down the sidewalks in the morning and afternoon with their backpacks. Truly summer has just about come to an end although the official day for the beginning of autumn is a couple of weeks away. The temperatures are still in the mid-20s C and I am not ready to box up the linen just yet.

It was a gorgeous evening with a nice crisp breeze. The sun was setting and it looked like a Monet painting as it reflected on the pond where the ducks and geese were gathering. To my surprise there were a pair of Loons and about 8 Greater Yellowlegs punching in the soft mud at the edge of the pond for a meal with those long bills.

A pair of Loons
Greater Yellowlegs
A couple of American Coots in with the other water fowl

It is always good to get outside if you can. I remember when my mother fell and broke her hip. She was reluctant to get up and walk again and her doctor was quite stern in his response – “Either use them or loose them!” It is good for me to remember on those days when I would rather curl up with a book instead of getting out in the fresh air. The long hours of book reading and sipping hot tea will be here soon enough!!!!!! It was not a terribly long walk around the pond and blood was given to the mosquitoes! It is a shame that they love to come out at dusk and feed right when all of the migrating birds are landing and settling down for the night.

I want to go back to this location during the day to see the shorebirds better. Wish me luck! There is a chance that a Blue Heron might be there as well.

In the Mailbox:

Question from ‘A’: “I am worried the new mum at Collins Street is inexperienced and this may affect the success of the breeding season. Today, at least 10 days into hard incubation, she left the eggs for nearly two and a half hours. Dad did not arrive to take over. It is a relatively warm but very wet and overcast day in Melbourne, so there was no warming sunshine to maintain egg temperature. How dangerous could such a long gap in incubation be to the developing chicks inside?”

This is a very timely question, ‘A’. Thank you for asking it. There has been quite a bit of concern about the new female at the Melbourne scrape. We learned much and were incredibly surprised about incubation times with Milda at the White-tailed Eagle nest. Her mate died and she stayed on the nest for 8 solid days before seeking food. It was cold and wintery. At one time the two eggs were left for 8 hours and at other times for shorter but considerable time. No one believed they would hatch but hatch the two did. Sadly they did not live because Mum was starving and there was no food even from a male that seemed to want to play Dad. Now these eggs were in a big twig nest that holds heat but the temperatures were much lower than those in Melbourne which are in a scrape. The gravel will hold heat but perhaps not as much as the twig nest. Dr Victor Hurley has stated on FB that an hour and a half will cause no damage at all. I would think that the time she was away is fine but my concern would be if the surface of the eggs were damaged at all by the rain. This can cause undue problems. We wait. There is often a failure for first time parents – in this case just the Mum. Dad and our former Mum worked like clockwork – they were a great team but that takes time to know the other partner well. We will wait but my hope is that only a couple of the eggs develop well as it will be easier for a first time Mum to cope. Many experienced females have difficulty with four!

I found this article on the issues with egg development and incubation that might be helpful:

https://sheffieldperegrines.wordpress.com/2015/06/10/the-failed-eggs-explained/

Question from ‘B’: “Do male Osprey fledglings migrate before female Osprey fledglings?”

That is a fantastic question and I do not have the scientific data at hand to state that the males go first although many believe that this is true. I want to check some data and will get back to everyone on Saturday morning with a data driven answer to this question. The research will be limited to the UK birds because they are ringed and measured. Let’s see what we can find out. Thanks, B!

A rant and a question from ‘J’: “There is a lot of arguing going on over calling the parents of nestlings Mum and Dad at the Melbourne scrape. There is a person telling everyone to stop and use male and female so that we are not anthropomorphizing the birds. What do you think?” Thank you so much ‘J’ for sending me this question. I actually went and found the post and made a comment – something that I do not often do but I feel very strongly about this particular subject and I am happy to address how I ‘feel’ about this!

I get outraged when I see someone jump on another individual for giving human qualities to a non-human. In the study of animal behaviour, anthropomorphizing is attributing human characteristics to non-humans. That is the simple definition. Using words such as joy, grief, embarrassment, anger or jealousy are anthropomorphic terms. Dr Marc Bekoff, an expert in animal behaviour and emotions, and his colleagues use human terms all the time when they are dealing with the emotional lives of animals. “Being anthropomorphic is a linguistic tool to make the thoughts and feelings of other animals accessible to humans.” (123) Bekoff continues, “If we decide against using anthropomorphic terms we might as well pack up and go home because we have no alternatives. Should we talk about animals as a bunch of hormones, neurons and muscles???” (124). “When we anthropomorphize, we’re doing what comes naturally, and we shouldn’t be punished for it. It’s part of who we are.” (125).

Bekoff continues for many pages noting that we observe animals being happy, feeling grief. You have seen these behaviours. Anyone watching a streaming cam of any raptor will, at one time or another, note joy, anger, and all too often, grief. I can still “see” Connie and Clive standing over the dead body of their eaglet who had been flapping and jumping and broke a blood feather. She died of rodenticide poisoning like her younger sister. The blood in the growing feather should have coagulated but it didn’t because someone decided to poison the rats and Clive brought one to the nest. It was an incredibly moving time and Clive never got over the deaths. He left the nest.

We must acknowledge that animals experience joy, passion, grief, and suffering. They feel love and they feel pain. If we fully grasp that the animals and the birds are really no different than we are, then we might stop to think about how we treat them. That would be the beginning of real change in our world. I personally believe that it is our duty to make the planet a better place – to do all that each of us can do to make the lives of non-humans better. If calling them Louis or Sarafina helps to do this then fine. The adults at the Collins Street scrape are parents as we know it. The female is the Mum and the male is the Dad. What in the world does it hurt to call them that!?

Making News:

The only surviving Osprey chick from the Pitkin County Open Trails platform is now out of ICU and in the flight aviary! What fantastic news. In June, the female pulled her two chicks out of the nest when her talons inadvertently got caught on nesting material entangled with monofilament line. One chick died as the result of the long fall; the other was lucky that passersby took immediate action to get it into care.

Sharon Dunne posted some really good information about issues related to plastic and sea birds today. Thanks, Sharon, for reminding us that humans seem to use the ocean as their garbage can – or as is the case with the UK reporting, as their toilet for releasing raw sewage. We need to clean up our act.

Can you image if this beautiful little Albatross chick was fed that plastic horse? Thankfully the parent seems to have regurgitated it on the ground. It could have killed them also. We want the sea birds to eat fish and squid and not fill up on plastic so they are not hungry and die. That is just horrid.

Fledgling osprey from the UK flies west and gets into a bit of a pickle landing on the RRS Sir David Attenborough west of Sula Sgeir. Thankfully they are heading into port. This youngster will get a second chance to get his flight coordinates set!

Two announcements have come for L4 and L3. The first was for L4 who appears to have done so well that release is now almost at hand. This was followed by a statement that L3 is also a candidate for release at a later date. This is great news. L4 was the first of the four siblings this year to catch its own prey and was a real favourite of many of us. I will never forget the fearlessness when L4 wanted to be first at Mum’s beak and scrambled over the older bigger siblings to get there. If you are wondering — will L4 be fine. Absolutely!

Another raptor has been shot in the UK. This was a Red Kite that was shot at Epping Forest! It is now undergoing extensive rehabilitation and vet treatments. The police are appealing for help in finding the perpetrator.

Nest News:

Sarafina had to go between Louis’s legs to get her tea time fish! ‘B’ reminded me that Sarafina is now 97 days old today (Wednesday), the same age as Vera in 2020 when she fledged. If Sarafina stays on another day, she will have the record for Loch Arkaig’s longest lingering fledgling.

Yes, Sarafina now has the record for the longest lingering fledgling at Loch Arkaig! She may also get the award for tackling Dad with her landings to get the fish he continues to supply.

Padarn now has the record at the Dyfi Nest for the longest lingering fledgling.

Aran still has his entire family at Glaslyn this morning. No sign of anyone thinking of packing their suitcases.

Xavier is really enjoying incubating those eggs in the scrape in Orange. I love how he talks to them in ‘falconese’. Diamond is not always obliging in his requests for ‘eggie time’. Xavier is simply adorable. Oh, let us all hope that there is one great big healthy chick this year like Izzi. And if there are more – let them be healthy too…and let the pigeon population increase so that everyone is full to the brim.

Xavier hoping for some more time with the eggs…

The Sea Eagles are nothing short of gorgeous. They are now almost completely covered with their juvenile plumage. It is SE29 standing. SE30 is still a little lighter at the shoulder and the beard.

Just look at the expressions on their face – so intently watching and taking in ‘something’ outside the nest. Great development.

The Sea Eagle FB page reminds individuals that there is an entire website devoted to the Sea Eagles. There is all kinds of interesting information there. Have a look if you are interested. Here is the link:

https://sea-eaglecam.org/?fbclid=IwAR0J6f2m0AzrMyfnpm2kgnNCZtzJ2tAwYfU7NRYQiRcu8RXr8VNlhqZHF-Q

Mum has been doing quite a bit of yelling at Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge for the last couple of days. Sometimes Dad will slowly eat the fish he has caught and bring her the leftovers….don’t think she is any too happy about that. Maybe if he brings her another big fish she will take it and let him incubate the eggs longer. Could be a good strategy Dad!!!!!!!!!! Just like Xavier, Dad loves time with the eggs in the nest.

Marrum shows her partner, Partney, the second egg of the 2022 breeding season on Tumby Island, South Australia. Congratulations!!!!!!

Migration News:

Rutland has confirmed that all of Manton Bay Ospreys are now officially deemed to be on migration and away from the nest. Here is the announcement with the last image of Maya before she departed. What a grand year it was and what beautiful daughters they raised.

A great article on Osprey migration with maps and dates to answer almost all of your questions and to refresh our memories.

avianreport.com/osprey-migration/

Here is a good article on the tools that scientists use to study bird migrations. Thanks Sharon Dunne for bringing this to my attention!

https://theconversation.com/birds-migrate-along-ancient-routes-here-are-the-latest-high-tech-tools-scientists-are-using-to-study-their-amazing-journeys-187967?fbclid=IwAR0DxCrzhLBZsSaMSy5jZwPacTBBUSil5tufCL6ZUcj6HxlvBKreVVVXgdM

There is still no tracking data for Karl II who is known to have been in the Kherzon region of Ukraine where the fighting is said to be intense as Ukrainian forces seek to take back the region from Russian forces. There are 2 reports for the 7th of September. Bonus remains in Belarus and we have heard from Kaia who is in Ukraine but appears to have found a good spot to fish.

Kaia did not fly far. She is fishing in the Desna River.

Tweed fledgling positively IDed and photographed on the Iberian Peninsula.

On 1 September at 17:44 Iris stood proudly with her mate, Louis, at the Hellgate Canyon Osprey nest in Missoula, Montana staring straight into the camera. It is one of the most poignant, beautiful, eerie and haunting images (all wrapped up into a lot of emotions) of this year. It felt like goodbye. Is this the last image of the year? I hope not for forever – but that is why it strikes me as so strange. Sealed in our memories in this singular instant is the fact that Iris is happy to stand next to Louis, happy with the way things are, happy with her life. They look beautiful together. If they were humans they would be having this image printed on cards to send to all their friends.

Safe travels dear one…we hope to see you in late March or April.

There have been a lot of questions about the Melbourne scrape and a lot of anxiety amongst viewers. I propose a deep breathe or several and let us wait and see what happens. Not every nest is a success. Xavier and Diamond often lay 3 eggs with only 1 developing and hatching and this could be a good thing for the new Mum in Melbourne. One healthy eyas is a great thing! A blessing. We will continue to keep our eyes on those UK nests for migration but no one appears to be wanting to go on a holiday to the south as yet. We just had a hummingbird in the garden and the rabbit was on the deck eating being protected by the crow who was above it in the bird bath. How beautiful!

Thank you so much for joining me today. Please take care of yourselves. Stay safe. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their posts and streaming cams, their Tweets, etc where I took my screen captures: Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, Royal Cam Albatross Group NZ, NZ DOC, Hugh Venables, Cornell Hawks, Raptor Persecution UK, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Friends of Osprey, LWRT, Looduskalender, Conservation without Borders, and Montana Osprey Project.

QT flies and Louis and Iris together

2 September 2022

Hello Everyone,

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

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

She looked up to the sky calling.

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

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

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

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

Here is a video of that great flight:

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

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

Is this goodbye?

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

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

Victor flies in the aviary…and other news on Friday

2 September 2022

Friday is going to be a much nicer day in terms of weather. It has been sweltering on the Canadian prairies. The high will be 21 and not 32! It is hard to imagine it being 32 degrees at the beginning of September in Winnipeg. The sun is bright and the sky is blue without a cloud in sight. It will be a good day to go to the nature centre for that long walk and to see how those little ducklings have grown this week. The egrets were still in Winnipeg last night. They attracted a few of us to gasp at their beauty as they flew into their roosting tree at sunset.

No matter what is happening today in your life, take the time to marvel at the work of the wildlife rehabbers who are giving our darling raptors a second chance to live out their lives soaring in the skies. Smile. Victor is flying!!!!!!!!!!!!

Making News:

The Ojai Raptor Centre has done an amazing job getting Victor to flying in the large aviary from the patient that arrived with severe zinc toxicity. They posted a Victor of our dear Victor flying so well. So thankful for Dr Sharpe and everyone who gave Victor his second chance! What a wonderful sight to see ——-Victor flying and not having to do physio being supported by a human lifting a towel. Tears.

Whenever you think about intervention and someone says ‘nature will take care of it’ ——think of our dear Victor and tell them about him. Maybe you can gently change their mind. Or you could tell them about Little Bit ND17 – or both!!!!!!

You might remember that one of the two eaglets on the US Steel Bald eagle nest fludged and, in the process, tore many of its feathers. It was taken into care. Here is the most recent news on this lucky eaglet who is getting its second chance!

Rosie’s broken feather on the right.

The new feathers being inserted. They will fall out when Rosie has her first moult. Oh, what a very lucky eaglet! Just like Victor and Little Bit.

Migration counts at Hawk Mountain:

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

As hurricane season is with us, researchers are looking at how our warming earth and hurricanes are impacting our feathered friends.

https://www.audubon.org/news/how-bird-researchers-are-tracking-impacts-intensifying-hurricane-seasons

If you are living where Baltimore Orioles will or are passing through, heading to their winter homes, remember to put out the oranges and the jelly (they love other flavours than grape, too) for them to help build their energy.

The RSPB gives us all some ideas about how we can better ‘green’ our lives.

https://www.rspb.org.uk/get-involved/community-and-advice/green-living/

I was extremely interested in their article on how to create a garden that is beneficial for wildlife. It is always good to look for new and better ways to take care of those garden friends that come to us for food, shade, and shelter.

https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildlife/advice/gardening-for-wildlife/creating-a-wildlife-friendly-garden/

Nest News:

Who could have predicted that the Hellgate Canyon nest would have a visit from both dear Iris and Louis on Thursday? What a pleasure it is to see her. Like so many of you, I have growled at Louis but, in the end, Iris seems much happier when he is about so…I am going to stop moaning when I see Louis. I wonder if this is the pair together, Iris saying goodbye to all of us until next spring?

Beautiful Iris. If this is the last time we see you this year, travel safe, always have a full crop, enjoy your winter but return in the spring. You give us hope and inspiration.

And she is off, the oldest osprey in the world living in the wild.

Feeding time for the Sea Eagles. Notice how much progress they are making in terms of plumage but also, in standing.

There was another prey delivery at 1200 and SE30 did some impressive mantling on its arrival.

Xavier brought Diamond a nicely dressed pigeon for breakfast. She was thrilled and Dad got to spend some time incubating those three eggs in the scrape at Orange.

At the 367 Collins Street scrape in Melbourne, the little Dad loves taking care of the eggies just as much as Xavier does. Here is an early morning hand over.

The Collins Street Mum just found ‘us’!

Mum and Dad have such a good routine at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. Mum knows that Dad is coming with a partial fish for her. She would have seen him eating his portion on the ropes before arriving at the nest and transferring the rest of the fish to her. Typically, the males eat the heads of the fish. Then Dad gets a chance to incubate the eggs, too. Great system. Gives Mum a nice quiet time to have her lunch. It sure won’t be quiet in a couple of weeks!!!!!!

Dad brings in some more decorations for the nest later.

The check on Karl II and his family as they migrate shows us that Karl II is following his normal flight path. Everyone hopes that he will be changing his trajectory as this normal path will have him flying directly into Kherson an area that is quite unsafe. Looduskalender posted the different colours for his flight this year and Karl II’s last two years.

Karl flew fast and quick to get into Belarus. Let us all hope that the winds carry him to his favourite tree -safely and quickly- in the very centre of Africa.

Bonus appears to be in Belarus near Makarychy in the Gomel Oblatst. He must be finding a good food source in the Pripyat River marshes.

Kaia’s tracker came on and showed she had traveled 28.8 km. She remains in Ukraine.*

Waba – no data since 30 August.

Thank you so much for joining me this morning. Wishing our Black Stork family from the Karula National Forest in Estonia safe, safe travels. It will be interesting to see what Karl II does as he approaches Ukraine. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following whose posts, videos, and streaming cams made up my news for the day: Ojai Raptor Centre, Hawk Mountain, Audubon, RSPB, Montana Ospreys, Tamarack Wildlife Centre, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and Looduskalender.

  • I have inadvertently been using the term ‘the Ukraine’. Having lived in the 2nd largest area of Ukrainians many decades prior to the country’s independence, it became a habit to say ‘the’. Now it is not appropriate. Ukraine is, of course, its own independent country. Apologies to anyone who might have been offended by my oversight.

Early Sunday in Bird World

21 August 2022

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Big Red. August 20 2022
Arthur. August 20 2022

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

A quick hello and brief news in Bird World

As I was driving out of Winnipeg it seemed like a good idea to give you a sense of the area where I am going to look for Bald Eagle nests.

My first stop is at Gimli, Manitoba on the West side of Lake Winnipeg. Lake Winnipeg is said to be the 8th largest freshwater lake in the world. With all of the rain and the storms this past spring – and the flooding – the lake is beginning to claim some of the land along the shore. I am headed to Hecla Island to count Bald Eagle nests but, there will be a problem. The Bald Eagles traditionally nest along Black Wolf trail – on the shore! But with the flood the area along the trail is still wet, according to the park ranger I spoke to yesterday. Trees have fallen and nothing has been cleared and he tells me he is afraid of what he will find. So instead of a lot of juvenile Bald Eagles, it seems there are tonnes of cygnets this year.

My first stop is Gimli. Gimli is also known as ‘New Iceland’. The citizens of Gimli make up the second largest population of Icelanders outside of Iceland. They are very proud of their Viking heritage.

There is a small harbour at Gimli with lots of gulls hoping for some fast food leftovers. This is a Ring-billed Gull, a very common sight in southern Manitoba. White head and underbelly, grey wings, black tail, yellow beak and legs. They are named after the black ring at the tip of their bill.

How to cause a flurry of gulls? A large order of unsalted fries.

There is a small marina.

As I walked along the pier – in the midst of babies crying and children giggling, there was a very distinctive sound. Kip-Kip-Kip. You would have known it immediately. High up in the sky was an Osprey! It was soaring looking for a fish in the shallow waters.

It turned and headed to my left – far away – to start its dive. What a wonderful welcome. I hope that the sight of this magnificent raptor is a good omen!

There is good news in Bird World today. As I was loading the car, ‘CE’ sent me a message that Titi had fledged. That is the best news. Now the fears of the Goshaw getting this beautiful osplet are lessened. Time 13:33 10 August. Fantastic! Thanks CE.

The Janakkalan nest is empty tonight.

It has been raining at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. Mum needed a break and Dad came in to take over the shift just a couple of minutes ago at 11:07 nest time. Mum has been very careful to keep that precious egg dry.

A beautiful image of our Little Bit 17 sitting on his perch on the shores of the St Joseph River.

As we near the start of migration, it is nice to see that Iris still visits her nest and is still keeping it in tip top shape – just like she is. Iris is the oldest Osprey in the world at 28 or 29 years. It is not known where she winters but many suspect it is in south Texas.

The Sydney sea eagles still like to spar! Notice the two big crops. I do not really have any concerns for these two. Each one seems to hold their own. SE30 is spunky, for sure.

The big news is Titi’s flight today. The body of 1C1 was removed from Loch Garten. It had been a really sad scene with the adults just staring at their little one wondering what in the world happened. Hopefully the tests will tell us.

Mrs AX6 feeding her surviving fledgling today.

Thank you for joining me for this unexpected post. Take care everyone. I hope to have some more local images for you tomorrow.

Thank you to the following for their posts and their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Loch Garten, Loch Garten RSBP, Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Discovery Center, Sydney Olympic Park, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Montana Osprey Project, ND-LEEF, and Port Lincoln Ospreys.

Is it really Little Bit 17? and other Sadness and Gladness in Bird World

3 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

I was out almost all day yesterday and returned to find some sad news. We will get this over and move on to all the good news!

The situation at the #4 Osprey nest in Finland turned darker. An intruder appeared and the chicks ‘fell or flew’ off the nest. The youngest who had not as yet flown was predated. This is also the chick that was so vigorously attacked by Mum the other day. So sad. Thank you ‘N’ for letting me know. This is 81 lost so far in the past 13 months on streaming cams.

The Mum and the surviving fledgling on the #4 nest. Keep them in your warmest thoughts.

Ervie. Bazza Hockaday was doing some photography for a client and found Ervie, too. Can you spot Ervie on top of the pine tree? This park is across from the barge – so Ervie is staying close. (Magnifying glass almost required!)

Meanwhile Mum and Dad are making sure that Mum is quite comfortable on those eggs – they are lining the nest with a Silver Gull, one of the favourite foods of the Sea Eagles.

Everyone wondered if anyone would be keeping an eye for Little Bit ND17. It seems that lots of people who loved the eagle that fought so hard to live continues to have a loyal fan club. This evening on the Notre-Dame FB page, the following was posted. It looks as if our Little Bit has been very resourceful and is doing fantastic. Tears, joyful tears!

SF Ospreys have not received the DNA results from Brooks and Molate. Brooks continues to enjoy herself at the other nest and the visitor seems right at home. He is certainly a lovely Osprey – and talented.

The ‘visitor’ at the nest of Richmond and Rosie has done something very special – it caught a Spiny Dogfish (Shark) that lives in the Bay. (Reminds me of those brought to the nest at Mispillion Harbour in Delaware – bet it is just a slight difference in name from one region to the other but the same fish). The juvenile very proudly brought it to the nest. SF Ospreys say this is highly unusual. They have only seen a juvenile do this once. Round of applause!

Here is the video clip:

At the Black Stork nest of Karl II and Kaia, Karl was busy flying back and forth to the fish basket. He delivered 3 big meals to the storklets. Kaia delivered 1 on the 2nd of August. There was some concern that Karl II’s GPS was not working but it seems to be fine now. Thank goodness. I do worry about them all the time for some reason – storklets not yet fledged and requiring much food before migration.

Bonus has been standing on the curved perch with 1 leg. Great balance. Bonus is the oldest of the four. He is 72 days old on 2 August.

The four storklets of Betty and Bukacek are doing fantastic. The female- Fifinka- often spends time on the nest of the adults and then flies to the natal nest when food arrives. Sometimes she holds back from the bigger males but she wastes no time getting there if she is hungry. In the image below she is at the top flying in.

There is no reason for it other than sheer dominance at the Sydney Sea Eagles nest. Lady feeds SE29 and 30 at least every hour if not sooner. Things were going relatively well until 0911 when 29 decided to not be nice and attack 30.

Three minutes later 29 is going into a food coma and 30 is being fed (0917 below).

SE30 keeps its head down to protect it.

Notice how 30 is slinking around the back ready to move forward and eat when 29 calms herself. Very clever tactic.

SE 30 is still being fed four minutes later. All is right with the world.

Mom and Dad on the nest of the Port Lincoln Barge early on 3 August.

Did you fall in love with Louis and Anna at the Kisatchie National Park Bald Eagle cam? couldn’t believe your eyes the day 18 fish were on the nest? did you melt and worry when Kisatchie fledged? when Kincaid hatched this year? Well, Cody and Steve have more fun for everyone. You will be able to watch 2 Bald Eagle nests from the Louisiana! Here is the announcement:

Humans and wildlife rehabbers helping another juvenile eaglet so that it has a second chance at life. These stories are always welcome!

The fish have been arriving in various sizes to the Osoyoos nest. ‘H’ sent me a note this morning saying the tally was at least 13 yesterday. Olsen is keeping up the numbers and some of them had to be good a good size. Sometimes the chicks are full and sometimes they aren’t. The last fish for 2 August was delivered at 20:01. Dad brought it in and Big Chick (BC) grabbed the tasty little twiddler. Dad rooted around and found an old piece of fish and fed Little Chick (LC). The family is nourished and hydrated. They have a break in the weather for a few days. This is all good news.

Here comes Olsen! BC rushes over to get the little prize.

Fortunately for LC, Dad found a piece of fish and is feeding him while BC works on the twiddler. It is all good.

The fish started arriving at the Osoyoos nest around 0523. The first was a small one but it seems to have changed possession at least 6 or 7 times. BC has been grabbing and self-feeding. Soo got into the action so that her and LC had some breakfast too. It is starting off to be another great day at this nest with 7 fish before 00700. Thanks Olsen!

Beautiful Iris. She continues to work on her nest. Precious are these moments – every year we wait til she leaves and wonder if she will return in the spring after migration. 29 years?

There are no updates on L4. It is now presumed that it was another window strike on the Cornell Campus. That would mean that of the four eyases – three struck windows at Cornell whose Bird Lab is one of the world leaders. Of those three, two are in care and one died. It is time Cornell made its windows bird strike proof like all of us try to do. I have not see at this time 1052 CDT an image of the head of the juvenile believed to be ND17. Elsewhere things seem to be steady but that could change as I hit the word ‘publish’.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, postings, videos, etc: Osoyoos Ospreys, Notre Dame Eagles FB, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Mlade Buky, The Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Center for Wildlife, US Forest Service at the Kistachie NF, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and SF Bay Ospreys. They have been turned into my screen captures.

Early Tuesday in Bird World!

2 August 2022

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

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

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

Soo and BC and LC know Olsen is arriving.

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

Everyone ate and ate.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Lilibet on 30 July 2022.

Then he delivered a fish and no one showed up.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Thursday in Bird World

21 July 2023

Oh, it feels like another scorcher. Clear beautiful blue skies, not a cloud in sight, no rain, and 27 degrees C. It is a cooker. There are no birds flitting about – they are all being still in the shade.

I want to thank ‘B’ for alerting me to Little Bit’s release. I failed to do so in that posting and I am very grateful. Thank you ‘B’.

There is hardly anything left of the old Notre Dame nest in the park. It is going to be 33 in the area today. Let us all hope that Little Bit 17 – who was released back into the area yesterday – finds his family and is learning how to locate prey and eating well. Anything short of that would just be tragic.

Everyone at our local wildlife rehabilitation Centre was thrilled when a Bald Eagle that came into care was ready to be released today. This was an adult eagle and did not need to be taught to hunt prey but they did have to master the Flyway!

There he goes! Congratulations.

Sadly, a Merlin came into care after being shot in its shoulder yesterday. The vet at Wildlife Haven and the team worked tirelessly to try and give that little raptor a second chance.

I received word this morning that the Merlin is doing very well and the surgery to save its life was a success. It will now begin the long process of recovery thanks to all the volunteers, the donors who immediately chipped in for the costs of the antibiotics, etc. that will help this raptor recover. The wildlife rehabbers, vets, students, and volunteers as well as donors continue to be real ‘angels’ for all the injured birds. They do amazing things each and every day out of love – not our of any financial gain – because there isn’t any! I had a chat with one wildlife rehabilitation officer and she said that if everyone would take the funds they would spend for one coffee or one treat and put it in a jar and at the end of the month donate that money – every clinic would be able to do wonders towards helping centres across North America be able to help all the patients that come into their care even better.

Just when we thought that Avian Flu was waning, news from the UK and now from the province of Newfoundland in Canada says otherwise. Seabirds are dying by the thousands in eastern Canada. No doubt we will see a rise elsewhere. So very, very tragic.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/nl-seabirds-dying-avian-flu-1.6525180?fbclid=IwAR2qxyrUa7YAamJOmchw6xru2qdPes-2mJBDDAo60QQqZp8nOow2E6bq7F8

Mr Crow is training the three fledglings on what foods to eat – in our garden! We put out the makings of the sandwich and one took a leaf and dipped it in the water which got a frightful cry from Dad. They are making quite the ruckus. They are also ‘playing’ flying from chimney to chimney and back again. They look big and they are but their minds are ‘little fledglings’. Yesterday they were on top of the glass roof of the sunroom pecking away trying to get in. —–Of course my point is this. The male is actively teaching the three what to eat and where to find food!

This guy decided to dip his peanut in the bird bath. So cute.

Looking at me.

All three flew up to the neighbour’s chimney. (She puts out cat kibble for the feral cats but doesn’t realize it is the Crows that are eating it!) One stood on the metal top til its feet got hot. Mr Crow told them to stay put and they did – for about 10 minutes in the heat. I think they are now having a good old rest.

I wonder if the parents of Little Bit 17 will undertake this level of training? They have had all this time to work with ND15 and 16. Big Red and Arthur certainly spent weeks impressing on the hawklets where to catch voles and how to catch the squirrels. Oh, gosh, let us hope so and – let’s pray for good food sources for them.

At the Osoyoos Osprey nest where temperatures have been in the mid 30 degree C at ground level, Olsen has brought in one fish this morning. Mum Soo fed both chicks equally and had some herself. It is a good start to the day but it has to be difficult fishing for it is now 0936 at the nest. That first fish and feeding were 0816. It will be another extreme heat day at the nest. Keep your positive wishes going out to them.

The osplets are standing and look at the nice juvenile feathers coming in.

The fish has arrived.

Soo made sure that each got equal so no one is left out. Good for Mum. Her crop is sunken in – everyone really needs one good fish to land on this nest today along with a few small ones. Or could I wish for 2 big fish?

We are only 27 degrees C but, in the shade of the lilacs, the temperature is 18. There are dozens and dozens of small songbirds in there, sitting quiet, saving their resources and staying cool. Thinking of planting? Think of the birds. Plant native trees that will provide shade and maybe even some seeds for the birds and squirrels.

Poor Alden! Will Grinnell Jr find him hiding in the shade of the scrape?

Dad has two nice fish on the Sydney Sea Eagles nest for when Lady and SE29 and 30 wake up and want their breakfast fish.

The news out of Balgavies Ospreys is that the chick that was on the nest that collapsed, Blue 640, was placed on a new high platform and has fledged. How grand. No injuries from the nest collapsing — and immediately taken into care to see if all was alright. Parents are around. All is good.

At the Glaslyn nest of Aran and Mrs G, the last of the 2022 chicks, Blue 499, has fledged! Congratulations everyone. He flew back to the perch and slowly made his way down to the nest.

Dory keeping her three osplets cool today. It is currently 24 degrees C – not bad! Osoyoos would certainly take those cooler temperatures.

Fish continue to land on the nest at Jannakkalan Osprey nest in Finland. No shortage! Both chicks self-feeding – one continues to be better than the other but it will soon catch up. They need to get their technique down and hold the fish and pull up…it will come! The possible step-mum began to peck at the chicks again and has not been seen today. Both chicks are 46 days old today so close to fledging. A statement will be released about the Mum, Yellow ring band NTF after a search around the nest for her shortly.

Iris hasn’t been on her nest for some time. This morning at 0721 she paid a visit! Good Morning, Iris. Iris appeared to be looking around at someone or for someone while she was on the nest. She eventually goes to the perch and looks and then preens.

The one thing I did notice was that it was early in the morning. Iris normally fishes well before 0700. Why doesn’t she have a nice big crop? How is the fishing in the river lately? They are having the same heat as everyone else. 34 C for Iris today. Is she able to get fish?

Junior and Malala together on the nest. The female Bald Eagle has brought fish to the nest today and waited for her kids to show up. We know what has happened to Junior but where is Malala?

A letter has gone out to BC Hydro about the electrocution of Junior on one of their power poles. If you want to help, I urge you to write a letter in support. I could not find an e-mail contact on their site. If you stumble across it, please let me know. This is a great letter – have a read. Thank you, Anna Brooks!

I went to check on Soo and the chicks at Osyoos. She is desperate to try and shade them from the heat. She lost all of her chicks last year because of the heat wave. Send her your most positive wishes.

Thank you so much for joining me. People are working hard to try and help our raptors and all of the other species of birds and wildlife. Remember to leave water outside for them. It could save their lives. Please take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their FB posts or their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: GROWLS, ND-LEEF, Audubon Explore, Osoyoos Ospreys, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Montana Ospreys, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney, Bwywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, and Cal Falcons.

Updates on Victor, Ervie and more in Bird World

10 July 2022

I want to start by putting a smile on everyone’s face. Ervie. The photo was taken yesterday around the North Shore where you will see that Ervie has caught a really nice sized fish – not a puffer! Thank you ‘B’ – I have been so preoccupied with Victor and a couple of osprey nests that I missed checking on Ervie since they posted his last tracking. — Good things happen to talons. They grow!

That is a beautiful fish and good form, Ervie! Does everyone realize that Ervie could be the best thing that happened to Port Lincoln tourism? Maybe, as a male, he will just hang around til he can take over the barge from Dad. Why not? There is lots of fish and he will not bother Mum and Dad – house rules.

Update on Victor, Sunday morning: Victor was active around 0619. He was doing some wing flapping and some hopping. He stood for a short while. He appeared to sleep better during the night.

This is the latest posting from Dr Sharpe about 42 minutes ago- 9am PST.

These are the images from this morning.

Andor and Mama Cruz are bringing in bedding for Victor. He was more alert. I understand that Dr Sharpe has approved a banner with a link for donations. If you have been wanting to donate, this is a great chance to support the wonderful work that Dr Sharpe does for these eagles on the Channel Islands. as ‘B’ and I were discussing, the only person we know that would work so hard to save this eaglet is Dr Sharpe. — I will also add that donations are tax deductible and you can give $100 and have it spread out over 12 months at $8.96 a month. You will get a beautiful thank you and a gift. Mine was an embroidered T-shirt and a super digital image of the nestlings of Thunder and Akecheta.

The information below on Victor comes from late Saturday.

Some close up images of Victor’s left leg and talons and a reminder of the many challenges and obstacles that need to be cleared away before Dr Sharpe can get the fledgling help.

Lillibet stayed with her brother – these two have always been close. They remind me of E17/18 and E19/20. It would be comforting for Victor to have his sister beside him. It has been a hard day to watch Victor. He has clearly appeared to be in pain. Hoping that Andor or Mama Cruz will feed him tomorrow.

Dr Sharpe is not the only person that is having trouble getting volunteers. Around the world it is the same – fewer and fewer people are stepping up to assist in the rescue of our wildlife. The high rise in the cost for everything has placed many who have helped in a situation where they cannot – fuel is one of those issues. I do not know a wildlife rehabilitation centre that is not overwhelmed in the middle of the summer. Every one relies on donations. It has been mentioned twice that Victor will need a place to go to get the care and treatment he requires. Will there be someone answer Dr Sharpe’s call for help if he gets permission to retrieve the eaglet. Will someone provide a boat? Is there a motel that will allow Victor in its rooms? Each leg of the rescue of eaglets in the Channel Islands has its many challenges and its costs.

I am actually starting Sunday’s blog Saturday night. It has been a roller coaster day in Bird World. The Osprey expert who is my go to -if I do not know the answer about an issue or who fills me in on the back story to everything happening in Osprey Land -sent me a letter. It said: “Isn’t it amazing how people are in denial about what is happening to juvenile ospreys?” It was ‘just the other day’ that ‘A’ wrote and said she will never look at an adult raptor the same – she now appreciates the struggle that they went through to live beyond their first year never mind to 8 or 10 years! As everyone reading my blog knows, ‘that list’ grows but, at the same time, I told my friend that there is a silent army out there working for the betterment of our birds and I meant all of you! Thank you for what you do for the birds – the smallest gesture can have the most impact.

Case in point. Just look at the Osprey nest below. The original one kept being destroyed in high winds. It was decided to consult some experts on design in order to shore up the nest and make it safer for the Ospreys on the Sunshine Coast in Australia. There is information in the posting below the image – but everyone there deserves a huge shout out. Well done.

Iris is, of course, a miracle. At the age of 28 or 29 she is as fit as they come. She is an excellent fisher and she continues to work on her nest in Missoula, Montana. and what a nest that is! Iris is an example that we should all follow – she eats well, has lots of exercise, and keeps herself busy. Iris is truly amazing and we are so glad that she is spending so much time this summer on this ever growing penthouse of hers because we get to watch. Beautiful wings, fabulous legs. By every measure she is a real senior but she looks like a fit youngster.

Mr President and Lotus teach Takoda life lessons since he is an ‘only’. They are doing a great job showing him how easy it is to steal his fish!

The four storklets are waiting for either Kaia or Karl II (or both) to bring some nice fish for breakfast. Frogs would be OK, too.

Bonus is squatted down on the left, facing right. He is fully transitioned into the family. The intervention appears to have been very successful – a rare Black Storklets life is saved by two people taking a chance on an idea – Urmas and Dr Madis V.

The climate is changing and it is having an impact on our feathered friends around the world. Warming seas, a shortage of fish, high day time temperatures. You name it. It is harming the bird’s ability to thrive. They are not birds but those cute little penguins that visit the Royal Cam chick on occasion are not the only New Zealand wildlife that could be having trouble.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/jun/14/search-for-clues-as-bodies-of-hundreds-of-little-blue-penguins-wash-ashore-in-new-zealand

‘H’ has reported that all three have fledged from the Carthage Tennessee Osprey nest. Congratulations everyone! That is fantastic news. ‘H’ also reports that there is really good hovering going on at the Mispillion Harbour Osprey nest. The kids are 52 days old and they were doing some super hovering as well as being nice to one another and trying self-feeding. Thanks, ‘H’. Like Ervie these two got forgotten with Victor’s injury.

All eyes are on that egg in the Chesapeake Conservancy nest of Tom and Audrey. The first hatch is doing fab…

So far it looks like at least 2 fish have come to the Osoyoos Osprey nest this morning. 07:28 and 08:11.

Dory and Skiff’s trio are doing fine as well. Lots of fish come to this nest. I would like to give one of them to Osoyoos sometimes. The chicks at both Osoyoos and Hog Island are getting feathers coming out of those shafts. Lovely.

That is a hop skip and a jump through the nests. Great news on Ervie. Always makes my heart stop – that Osprey! Thank you Dr Sharpe for all you do – this man needs to be given an award with a huge prize for all he does. Everyone else seems to be holding and doing good.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and or F/B or web sites where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey FB, Institute for Wildlife Studies, Explore.org and The Institute for Wildlife Studies, Bald Eagles Live Nest and News, Sunshine Coast Council, Montana Osprey Project, NADC-AEF, Eagle Club of Estonia, Mispillion Harbour Ospreys, Chesapeake Bay Conservancy, Osoyoos Ospreys, and Audubon Explore.