Who is in the scrape?

At 13:13:01 on 22 November an adult peregrine falcon landed on the Southwest ledge of The Campanile on the grounds of UC-Berkeley.

Annie visited the ledge early this morning just as the pink of dawn covered the horizon.

Oh, Annie, you are so beautiful. Look at your gorgeous patterned chest with that soft almost cotton-like collar.

The bird appears anxious. Is it Grinnell returning to his scrape but worrying about the interloper? Is it the interloper? or is it Annie and I am just reading the situation incorrectly?

Grinnell has two bands – the one on the left leg is either a dark blue or black with white letters and numbers. Then there is the standard metal band on the right with Grinnell’s federal number. I just can’t see bands on this birds legs!

That said, this is a comparison between Grinnell and the interloper male posted on the twitter feed of the CalFalconCam on 5 November 2021. Grinnell is on the left and the interloper is on the right. The angle makes the interloper on the right appear much larger than Grinnell but the UC Falcon team confirmed that both of the males are a similar size.

There is a hint. Look at the beautiful striped breast of Annie and how far it goes up her chest. We know that Grinnell doesn’t have a lot of stripes. The interloper does but it does not go up high enough for the bird on the ledge. (See images below).

Using the images of the three birds, it appears that the bird on the ledge after lunch should be Annie. But, why is she so nervous?

Sean Peterson of UC Falcons solved the mystery and confirmed that this is Annie for me. He says that “She might be a bit nervous about all the activity over the last week or so.” Thanks, Sean!

She is looking around everywhere and doing a little chumping. Oh, how I wish Grinnell would have landed on that ledge at that very moment. Maybe he doesn’t know the interloper has not been seen since Grinnell came back to his territory on Wednesday.

Annie jumps down from the ledge.

With a hop and a little flight she lands in the scrape box.

Gosh, Annie, you are beautiful.

Oh, I wish that Grinnell would fly in and join her in the scrape! Come on Grinnell!!!!!

We wait and hope.

Cal Falcons has a fundraiser going to thank Lindsay Wildlife Experience. T-shirts for $20 US plus postage. If you are interested, go to the falcons web page and click on the hoodies. The fundraiser will pop up immediately. In order to keep down costs, the shirts will be printed once the fundraiser is over. Estimated delivery time to Canada is 27 December.

In other Bird World news, both Diamond and Xavier have visited the scrape box in Orange today. The issue of the missing eggs does not seem to be an issue. At Port Lincoln, Bazza scored the breakfast fish at 07:37. Dad arrived with another at 08:28 and Ervie got that one. Once Bazza was full with his fish, Falky took over. I just checked and Bazza was eating again. Gosh.

For the fans of Jack and Diane at the Achieva Osprey Nest in St Petersburg, Florida, Jack delivered his first fish to Diane today. Don’t expect eggs for awhile.

The couple have been renovating their nest on the parking lot of the Achieva Credit Union. They have a massive egg cup! Here is the link to that camera:

I also want to remind you of the African desert cam at the bolt hole. A meteor shower was caught on camera and there were three Cheetahs that visited today. The beautiful birds arrive around sunrise.

The link to this camera is here:

It is pretty quiet these days. The Eagles are working on their nests and eggs are being laid but it will be a bit before we see some bobbles.

Take care everyone. Be safe. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: UC Falcon Cam, Achieva Credit Union, and the Namibia Cam.

Is it Tiny Tot Tumbles?

There is never 100% certainty in identifying a bird four months or a year or two after it has flown off the nest unless there are Darvic rings and bands. For ospreys, there are facial features – the head – that remain the same for their entire life once they have reached the age of fledging. I have been told, by Osprey experts that I respect, that an osplet born in the spring of 2021 could no longer have the white curved feathers on its wing tips. I am trusting that information to be true.

As many of you know, I have a very special interest in Osprey third hatches. I am particularly focused on these little ones that survive but who have been denied food by their siblings and who might have died due to siblicide. I will be collecting data from nests for the next decade to see if there are any patterns on these particular survivors. Do they do better in the long haul than their siblings? It is extremely difficult if they have not been ringed. The best way to study their survival is both a Darvic ring and a sat-pak with a battery that would last for four years, like the one on Solly who hatched in 2021 at the Port Lincoln nest.

Over the past month or so, a number of Ospreys have landed on the Achieva Osprey Nest in St Petersburg, Florida. Several remind me of the intruder that Tiny Tot Tumbles battled last summer. Have Jack and Diane visited? Maybe. I admit to being so focused on Tiny Tot Tumbles that I ignored the other two siblings and parents in terms of identification markers.

On 30 October an osprey landed on the Achieva nest. I stared at that ‘face and head’ for two days. Could it be?

Staring at me every time I open the fridge or close it is a large magnet of Tiny Tot Tumbles. The screen capture was on 20 June, two weeks before she left the nest for good. Tears began to flow.

There are thousands of images of Tiny Tot in my external hard drives. From the moment she hatched, to the little one running around the rim of the nest trying to get some food. There were days that I counted each bite of food that she got. Notebooks full. That fridge magnet image was taken on a day when Tiny Tot was at her loveliest. She would sit on the perch for hours – she was elegant! And she was a formidable opponent. Any intruder was ousted from the nest. She often battled them alongside Jack, her dad.

A slider to move back and forth to compare.

I am convinced that the amazing osprey that landed on the Achieva nest in St Petersburg at 12:57 on 30 October is, in fact, Tiny Tot Tumbles. She has been away and survived for four months, grown and matured. The white plumage forming the V is very thin on both of those images.

There have been visitors that have, of course, a similar V but the amount of white plumage varies with each of them. The bird below has visited the nest often but it is not Tiny Tot.

This was Tiny Tot Tumbles on 3 July. Look at the white lines from the beak forming a ‘V’. They are thinner on Tiny Tot than on the bird above.

Here is Tiny Tot Tumbles on 27 June mantling.

This is an image of Tiny Tot Tumbles on 26 June. I had enlarged it from a screen capture so that everyone would note the very specific head – the thin white lines, the heart shape of the white. Sadly, the resolution is not good.

These following two images were posted on 20 and 21 June, respectively. The top one is the one on 20 June that I used for my fridge magnet. The next one is the following day, Tiny Tot on the perch.

She is so elegant. She has grown and filled in since she flew off the nest. There she is on the perch looking like she is applying to be on the runway for the most beautiful Osprey of 2021!

Here she is as a wee babe. It was easy to imagine with the difference in age and size that Big Bob might cause problems. In the end, both Big and Middle Bob, sibling 1 and 2, prevented Tiny Tot from eating for a total of 12 full 24 hour periods during the first six weeks of her life.

There is Tiny Tot submissive and hungry over to the right. Big Bob has been unmerciful in its attacks on her on this day.

What changed on the nest was Diane going out and fishing. She began to bring back big catfish and there was always enough to feed Tiny Tot. By 7 April, Tiny Tot has grown and is getting big enough that the older siblings might try to thwart her from eating but she is unstoppable. If she did not get enough to eat, Tiny Tot would root around in the nest. She always found scraps and was known for even cleaning off fish flakes from discarded bones. It is difficult in the ‘real world’ and it takes this kind of tenacity to survive.

Tiny Tot has a nice big crop on 9 April! Just look at her there in the middle of the image below.

This is 10 May. Tiny Tot is gorgeous. She is beginning to get that characteristic head that we all recognized. Her juvenile feathers are coming in and she has survived! In the end, Sibling 1 fledged and returned to the nest once, the following day. Sibling 2 fledged returning for a bit for food. Then Tiny Tot was all alone. Jack brought in fish for her and she stayed – as she should – honing her flying skills and getting ‘street smart’ protecting the nest. On 5 July, precisely four months after she hatched, she flew off the nest. We never thought we would see her again.

I am grateful that Tiny Tot has paid a visit to the nest to show us all that she is thriving. She has put on weight from the elegant pose on the perch post but that striking head remains the same.

I hope that Tiny Tot visits the nest over and over again. She was gallant in her protection of it for Jack, her dad, and with him on occasion. And, for the record, she could be a he. There were never DNA tests taken or any banding. Just keep your eye out for this beautiful osprey. Could we be lucky enough to see s/he raise osplets on this very nest in the future?

Take care everyone! See you soon.

Thank you to the Achieva Credit Union for its streaming cam in St Petersburg where these screen shots were taken.

How do you say ‘cute’ in Falconese

One of the last feedings for the little eyas at the scrape box in Orange, Australia was around 18:19:00 yesterday.

This little one is eight days old. It has sure grown!

I took three video clips to cover the entire time Diamond was feeding the chick. Watching the movements and the interactions instead of seeing a still image can give you a more in-depth look at the size of the bites and the sheer cuteness of the moment.

The total number of fish delivered to the Port Lincoln Osprey nest was 7 yesterday. They were delivered at 7:11:22, 8:23:54,12:47:30, 13:52:18, 14:54:09, 16:37:00, and 18:08:37. This is a capture of Dad delivering the fish at 7:11 and Mum coming to the nest from the perch as well as a capture from the 14:54 feeding:

There appeared to be an adult on the Achieva Osprey Nest in St Petersburg, Florida yesterday. The marks on the crown of the bird seem to be that of the male, Jack. Today, another adult showed up at the same nest at 11:16:09.

Jack appears to be alarming.

This is the image of the adult from yesterday (right) and an image of Jack bringing Tiny Tot Tumbles a fish on the left. It seems likely that the adult visiting the nest is Jack. There is a lot of prep work to be done before Diane returns.

The White Bellied Sea Eagles 27 and 28 entered hatch watch the other day! That date range for fledging is 75-80 days from hatch. WBSE 28 was 77 days old on 16 October (yesterday) when it branched! Watch closely to see what 28 uses to make the leap.

Fledging is getting closer for these two. No doubt they will have contests to see who can get higher up on the tree!

Today is starting off as a fantastic day in Bird World. While there are little ones to feed or fledge in Australia, staff at many of the nature centres in the UK are refurbishing Osprey nests. A new pole and platform has been installed at Lyn Brenig and today the work was completed on Pont Cresor, the nest of Aeron, Z2 and Blue 014.

Thank you for joining me today. It is beautiful and sunny. All of the garden animals are having their lunch and the world is simply right with itself. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my video clips and screen captures: the Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam at Orange and Cilla Kinross, and Achieva Credit Union Osprey Nest in St. Petersburg.

Awww…..Thursday in Bird World looks like it will be a good day

Sometimes it just feels like it is going to be a good day the minute you click on a streaming cam to check on the birds and you see the little ones are being fed. That is what happened when I went to peek on the Cowlitz Osprey Nest. Wattsworth had brought in a fish. I did not stop to see how big it was because both chicks were up being fed by Electra. It is just all good. Of course, 3 more fish today or – how about 4? – would be magnificent.

Oh, and a fish had just been brought in by White YW to the Foulshaw Moss Nest- was I ever lucky. There is no rewind on their camera.

Just look at Tiny Little Bob’s face when White YW brings in that fish. You can almost hear him screaming, “Hurry up Dad before the big guys notice there is a fish!”

For the first time Tiny Little Bob’s eyes look great. I was so worried that Big Bob had damaged his eyes but just look at them popping out today – and that crop. Doin the happy dance.

Notice how Tiny got right up there in the sweet spot for the food. Oh, this little one is clever. I am also seeing that the big ones are not being aggressive towards Tiny Little Bob anymore. I don’t know what Blue 35 did but she did something to get those two big ones to stop tormenting Tiny Little Bob.

And look, Tiny Little Bob is getting some fat on his cute little bottom and his wings are filling out. This is all good news. Such a relief. I think he might be another one of those tiny little third hatches that goes on the list of survivors who turn out to do great things.

Wonder if they are going to band these three – surely they will. Must check!

And the other Tiny Tot is doing really well. It is always a good day when he turns up on the nest just to say ‘hi’. I suspect from looking at him that he has been fed off nest sometime this morning. He had quite the time with the intruders yesterday. Hopefully the nest will be quiet today.

The fledge watch on the Red tail Hawk Nest on the Cornell Campus remains. Little K3 seems to like to live on the wild side going around and almost falling off the nest. Arthur made a quick chippie drop this morning and got out quick. It is a warm summer day but even as the three walk around on the grate no one seems quite ready to fly.

K3 really wins the award for cute hawk poses! Look at that adorable face.

The other good news is that K2 is eating well and seems to be looking better this morning. She could not close her beak yesterday and appeared to have issues around her eye. Warm wishes for getting everything sorted before fledge! Last year J2 fledged first. J1 was a big beautiful female. She actually fledged last – on the same day as J3 but after. I wonder if she was not as confident a flyer? or at least felt she wasn’t? It always bothers me that such an elegant bird broke her neck flying into Weill – a building on the Cornell Campus that should have window treatments so birds do not hit them! Seriously.

Idris caught another whopper today. The two Bobs on the Dyfi Nest and Telyn are full from the top of their crop to the tip of their talons!

These two are really looking nice and healthy. Awww Idris, you are amazing. You keep this up and in years to come you might get a wall with a perch, too, just like Monty, Telyn’s former mate.

You can watch all the action at the Dyfi Nest here:

One of the birds that we have not checked on lately are those parrots that do not fly, the Kakapo. I was reminded of this today when the post arrived and there was the adoption certificate for Rangi.

Many of the not for profits or various government agencies have adoption schemes to help fund the work they do. For example, the Glaslyn Wildlife Centre has certificates and photographs of Aran and Mrs G and their chicks last year if you adopt the family. The money goes directly towards what is needed at the centre. Everyone is a volunteer. There is no big board of directors getting funds. The volunteers are still helping to feed Aran and Mrs G in Wales.

As for Rangi, my adopted Kakapo. He is a bit of a character.

@ Kakapo Recovery Twitter Feed. 2019

He was transferred to Whenua Hou in 1987. The minute he was out and free Rangi went and hid. He was not located again until 2009. Twenty-one years they couldn’t find him! Thank goodness these flightless parrots live for about 90 years if they are not harmed by pests or disease.

Today, visits are made by researchers and conservation officers to change the batteries in the satellite GPS trackers of the birds. They are given health checks and moved off island if necessary to a wildlife clinic in Dunedin, New Zealand (normally).

The Kakapo are only found in New Zealand and they are critically endangered. These non-flying parrot like birds exist only on Codfish Island/Whenua Hou, Anchor Island and Te Hauturu-o-Toi/Little Barrier Island. There are only 204 Kakapo in the world. According to the Kakapo Recovery Information Page:

The history of kākāpō is a story of drama, despair and hope. Before humans arrived, kākāpō were abundant throughout New Zealand. Population numbers dropped swiftly due to hunting, introduced predators and land clearance. Conservation efforts began in 1894, but by the mid-1900s, kākāpō teetered on the edge of extinction.

The biggest threats are infertility, genetic inbreeding, pests and vermin such as Pacific Rats and cats, as well as diseases. Here is a great coloured document giving the history of the Kakapo, the threats, and the hope.

Each wildlife centre, streaming cam, and conservation group has different adoption and donation plans. One day I want to write about them in an effort to try and sort out the individuals who monetize the birds for their own personal gain and those that really do help to conserve and protect. It is like a minefield out there! That said, it is really beneficial to give to those organizations that run on donations such as the Glaslyn Wildlife Centre, Foulshaw Moss (Cumbria Wildlife, etc). You might want to begin thinking about a way to help the birds and also have a gift to give to your grandchildren – or yourself! I am in awe of all the fundraising that The Friends of Loch Arkaig FB group undertake. Their last big project was a drawing turned into a print. The gorgeous detailed drawing was donated by Laura Grady – quite a talent. She did a great job capturing Louis and Aila.

So there are small groups working hard to help the various birds and their nests. Foulshaw Moss estimates that it costs 11,000 GBP to run their streaming cams. They also depend on donations.

But before you donate please do some checking. If you are wanting to help a bird that has been injured with the vet bills, for example – check and make sure that the vets are not donating their own time and expertise to the project or check to make sure that you are donating to the right agency. Send them an e-mail and ask! I am aware that a number of people wanted to help with the vet bills of a particular bird and donated to the streaming cam by accident a couple of years ago. It can happen so please check. Many groups also issue tax receipts so ask about that also!

Tomorrow is World Albatross Day!

Thank you for joining me today. I hope the weather is nice where ever you are and you can see some of your local birds or at least hear them. Take care. Stay safe.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I get my screen captures: Cowlitz PUD, Achieva Credit Union, Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, and the Dyfi Osprey Project.

Saturday Excitement in Bird World!

Oh, my day was made perfect when I woke up to see that both Tiny Tot and Little Tiny Bob both had had fish this morning.

The Cumbria Wildlife Camera has no rewind feature and shivers went up my arms as I struck it lucky for the late afternoon feeding! Little Bob is right in there and is starting to get a nice size crop. Warm fuzzies and tiny tears.

Here is a very short video of Little Tiny Bob getting some good bites.

If you look carefully, up by Blue 35’s head, you will see Little Tiny Bob with its nice crop. Big Bob is facing the opposite way.

Tiny Tot slept on the natal nest perch at the Achieva Osprey Nest in Florida last night. He went to sleep without any fish but woke up hopeful this morning. He kept flying on and off the nest in expectation. And then at 10:26:49 Jack delivers a fish! Tiny Tot has not been forgotten. Isn’t it just lovely? Warms my heart for this little one.

There is always a bit of a scramble as the juvenile grabs the fish out of the parent’s talon.

Tiny Tot is enjoying his fish in peace. No intruders and no siblings there to annoy him.

Liz Brackens reports some exciting news from Loch Arkaig. Last year, Louis and Aila raised three fabulous Ospreys. Louis is a fabulous provider. He would even fish at night and take on tandem feedings with Aila to ensure that little all of the chicks including Little JJ7 grew and thrived. Sadly, Aila did not return this year from her winter migration. Louis waited and waited at the nest. He bonded with another female and they took on nestorations on a different nest – not the one Louis shared with Aila that has the camera. Everyone was happy that Louis had found a new mate. This morning Liz reports that the nest behaviour has changed. Normally Louis would bring a fish to the nest and the new female would take it off the nest to eat it. Louis would then incubate the eggs. But this morning that behaviour changed. Louis brought a fish to the nest, stayed for a few minutes before going to the perch. The female ate the fish on the nest. Do we have a hatch?

The 1000 Islands Environmental Centre in Wisconsin posted a video of their four eaglets. They are doing fantastic. There are three parents. In this nest, there are two females and one male. Some of you may watch the Love Trio Nest on the Mississippi where there are two males, Valor I and II and Starr, the female. I grabbed a screen shot from that video for you. There they are all four of them getting ready to branch and then fledge. Goodness. I cannot imagine trying to hunt and feed four – good thing there are three parents!

This morning Aran arrived at the Glaslyn Nest where he collected the morning’s gifted fish. He then went on to defend the nest against intruders. It is wonderful that he is healing. Let us all hope that his wing is in excellent shape when winter migration comes in September.

And there is more fledging news. Big Bob on The Landings Osprey Nest on Skidaway Island near Savannah fledged this morning at 8:22. He is going to hover and land on one of the branches above the nest. There is a fish delivery about half an hour later and Big Bob had a bit of a time figuring how to get down to the nest and eat. Oh, these fledglings are so funny.

Here he goes hovering. He will land on one of the branches of the tree off camera and make his way to a different branch where we can see him.

Oh, Big Bob wants some of that fish! But how do he get down now that he is up on the branch? That seems to be his quandry. Of course, he will figure that out. Hunger is a great motivator.

After doing a lot of calling, fretting, and pacing on the branch, Big Bob jumps down!

There are going to be a lot of fledges. This morning at the Pittsburg Hays Bald Eagle Nest both H13 and H15 fledged. Early in the morning while the IR is still on you can see the three – one on the nest (H13) and two branched (H14 and 15). You might recall that this nest is a big event for the Pittsburg community. This is the first pair of Bald Eagles that have bred in 150 years. H13 has already fledged on 6 June. He was 75 days old. Today, H14 and 15 fledged. They are 77 days old.

The juvenile on the nest below is H13 having a food drop.

There will be a lot more fledges in the coming week. Things are really ramping up. Thank you for joining me today. It is a beautiful sunny 24 degree C day on the Canadian prairies. The birds are so happy that the temperature has dropped from the heat wave last week.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I grab my screen shots: Cumbria Wildlife Trust, Achieva Osprey, Cornell Bird Lab and Skidaway Audubon, Pittsburgh-Hays Bald Eagles and Pix Cam.

As the Nest Turns – late Thursday and early Friday edition

The Cowlitz PUD Osprey nest can be really frustrating. Or maybe it is just Wattsworth that causes my blood pressure to go up. He brought in a couple of appetizers on Thursday, 3 June. Electra promptly fed the babies who were sitting up straight and polite wanting their lunch. The fish is between Electra’s feet – it really is small.

So Electra took it upon herself to leave the two wee ones on the nest and off she went to fill the pantry – and she did! Electra had a really good feed on that fish. She was hungry and she fed the little ones, too.

As the sun sets, everyone has had several fish meals. Electra corrals the two little ones under her so she can keep them warm over night.

And, guess what? Wattsworth comes in Friday morning with another tiny tiny fish for Electra and the kids.

And speaking of fish, Jack must be really happy to have Tiny Tot defending the natal nest. Jack flew in at 5:30:17 with a nice fish for Tiny Tot.

3 June 2021. Jack delivers a much earned fish to Tiny Tot.

Tiny Tot immediately grabbed that fish out of dad’s talons and began mantling it. While it didn’t look like there were any intruders or older siblings about who would challenge Tiny Tot for his evening meal, Tiny wasn’t taking any chances.

It was a nice size fish and Tiny ate for quite awhile.

There is a real preciousness in these moments looking at Tiny Tot – so beautiful a juvenile – perched. The golden glow of the setting sun shows off the beautiful plumage.

As the sun went down, Tiny Tot was up on the perch protecting the nest. Sleep tight, Tiny. Have fish dreams!

And early Friday morning, Tiny Tot is defending the nest again against the adult intruder! Poor Tiny.

There was a nice chippie on the nest of Big Red and Arthur. Big Red kept fiddling with it hoping that the Ks would come round to wanting their last meal of the evening. It was 19:00.

They had eaten earlier and had nice crops. Just look how full those Ks are! Those peachy chests make them look like they have swallowed beach balls. Big Red has the chippie ready for a feeding thinking they might want some more but, no. None of them are lining up to be fed with their beaks open. I wonder if Big Red would like a late chippy snack?

“Would you like some of this nice chippie, sweetie?”

Big Red did not have any takers. That had eaten a lot of rabbit earlier and it looks like they just want to sleep. It will be a chipmunk breakfast unless Big Red decides to have a meal after the Ks are asleep – and she probably won’t. She is hardwired to feed those babies of hers.

It’s Friday on the Cornell nest. Big Red is sunning herself on the light stand and it looks like K1 is self-feeding. Wow. Leaving some open prey on the nest has finally enticed this one to dig in there. Good for you, Big Red. We are now moving into two to two and a half weeks til fledge.

Laddie brought in one of those teaser fish – smaller than a Wattsworth Appetizer – to NC0.

She did the best she could with the little fish she had. NC0 your babies are growing and doing great. You’ve grown into being a very good mom. Look at the head of the one grabbing that piece of fish. All of the down on its head is gone. It looks like it got black oil on its head. Reptilian phase is coming!

Your word for the day: nictitating membrane. The word comes from the Latin word nictare meaning to blink. It is a translucent third eyelid. It comes up from the bottom to the top and has been described as acting like a windshield wiper. It cleans the eye and helps produce tears. You can see NC0’s nicitating membrane in the image below.

It looks like it is going to be a nice day in Scotland for NC0, Laddie, and the Bobs. The sun is just coming up. Laddie must be out fishing.

Blue NC0 is having a rest with the Bobs.

It’s Friday tea time on the Loch of the Lowes Nest and all is well. Laddie has just brought in a brown trout and NC0 is already feeding the Bobs.

Blue 33 (11) was right off the mark. He hauled in one of his whoppers first thing for Maya and the Two Bobs. This along with the big piece of fish left from the evening prior should be a great start to the day for this family whose nest is at Rutland Manton Bay.

Look at all those feathers

Idris was also up early and had a nice fish for Telyn and their two Bobs. At one point it was hard to tell what was happening but it looked like Idris was feeding Telyn. I am told he does this. What a sweetheart!

Idris comes in with a fish for Telyn.

For sure he did feed the two Bobs some fish.

Idris is feeding the Bobs.

And as the sun is rising over the Urdaibai Biosphere just 38 minutes outside of Bilbao, Spain, our little albino Osprey is waking up. Zuri is still alive. This is such a rare event – the first known for certain instance in the wild – that everyone will be learning something from this little one. There are rumours going around that the wee one is blind and cannot hear. But, we wait. Clearly its eyes are very sensitive to the light and, yes, if he lives to fledge it will have heavy challenges to overcome because of its plumage. Still, a miracle would not hurt us and this would be a cute one.

The rain has really been pitching down in Spain. Around 13:00 on Friday, a fish came into the nest for Landra. That wee albino one was up there with the other two osplets wanting some fish! In the first image it is facing the opposite way but it moves to get in line with the other two siblings thirty seconds later. Again, a miracle in Spain might be what we all need as some pandemic lockdowns are eased and others as Portugal begins another lockdown. Go little Zuri – eat, grow, teach us.

On Friday there is some thinking that the three have an eye infection. I will keep you posted. That is not clear from the image below taken today. Some of you might recall the eaglets in the Southwest Florida nest, E17 and E18 having conjunctivitis. Fingers crossed. Send warm wishes.

Oops. Turn around! Wait…who is doing the feeding?
It rained so hard for so long. The little ones are really hungry.

We still have heat warnings on the Canadian Prairies – the sky is blue and the sun is bright. The leaves are getting even more thick and now all the birds that come to my garden are hidden by the vines that grow everywhere or the thick lilic bushes. One thing I will really miss is that lovely lilac scent that enveloped us earlier in the week. The heat has really killed the flowers. Still, it was grand to have them when we did!

Thank you for joining me. Stay safe, stay cool! See you soon. I will be checking on the little one in Urdaibai and Tiny Tot throughout the day.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I grab my screen shots: Cowlitz PUD, Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, Achieva Credit Union, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Loch of the Lowes. LRWT and Rutland Ospreys, and the Dyfi Osprey Project.

Tiny got fed up!

I wasn’t expecting to do another posting this evening but I found myself checking to see if a fish had wound up in Tiny Tot’s talons. I kept doing this every so often and then, all of a sudden, that intruder bird is on the perch pole and Tiny Tot is in the nest. Keep in mind that the last meal that Tiny Tot had was last night – 24 hours ago. He chased the adult intruder out early today and then brow beat a juvenile that came on the nest and took the fish that was supposed to be his! He is hot, hungry, and fed up.

And then there, perched on the pole is the intruder. Again. Now Tiny Tot is clever and he knows that if there is going to be a fish delivery it will be coming soon. And if he can do anything about it, he is going to get that fish. I grinned as I was watching Tiny Tot. Laura Culley is a falconer and she says that “food is a great motivator”.

So, at 8:25:55, Tiny Tot flies off the nest. You can see the intruder on the perch. I watched the footage four or five times. It seems that Tiny somehow hovered and reversed in the air. Tiny Tot’s flying prowess is increasing daily.

Then he sort of reverses and turns 45 degrees toward the perch. It reminded me of the men with those little carts that are hooked to the nose of airplanes and help them turn. Tiny didn’t have any help – he just did it.

He is doing a rather complex series of movements to turn around and get behind the other bird on the perch without flying forward off the nest.

OK. Tiny is aiming for the back of the intruder.

He flies up and gets on its back!

There he is flapping his wings and landing on the intruder at the same time.

He is hanging on the intruders side and is pushing him off by flapping his wings.

Down they go. Tiny Tot chases the unwelcome guest across the road. Hopefully that bird will not be back again tonight.

Tiny Tot returns to the nest. And at 8:35:12 Jack arrives with a fish for Tiny Tot. Oh, this is a well deserved fish. I hope it is a whopper.

Tiny is really hungry and he is gobbling the fish. I think he realizes that sometimes you just have to eat that fish fast so another bird doesn’t come along and steal it.

Tiny was finishing up and cleaning his beak at 8:54:54. Wow. That fish didn’t last very long.

Sleep well, Tiny Tot. We are all so proud of you. You defended your nest valiantly.

Thank you for stopping in to check on Tiny Tot. He will always be close to my heart but I know that he is loved by so many others. I am glad that his bravery and confidence – plus his knowledge of how to survive – is growing every day. As I have always said, if only one out of three survives in the wild – my money is on Tiny Tot.

These times with Tiny Tot are precious. There is no certainty that he will be there tomorrow so every day is a gift.

I want to close with an image of Iris’s nest at Hellgate in Missoula, Montana. If you are familiar with early 20th century American artists, you might know the work of Edward Hopper. For some reason the lighting and the emptiness remind me of Hopper’s images.

Now that Iris’s eggs have been taken and eaten by the Ravens, she has no need to come to her nest. She can just be out fishing and enjoying herself. But, on occasion, she stops by to say hello.

Thank you Achieva Credit Union and Cornell Bird Lab and Montana Osprey Project for your streaming cam. That is where I get my screen shots.

Being a bird is not that easy!

At 5:58:36 Tiny Tot was busy eating a fish. Then all of a sudden, Diane and Tiny begin to look around. Someone is arriving, someone they know! Two seconds later and one of the older siblings – I cannot tell if it is 1 or 2 – lands on the nest and begins sniffing around Tiny Tot’s dinner. It was really apparent that the older sibling was extremely hungry. Tiny Tot did not mind sharing its fish – at least, this time, it didn’t.

More than half of first year fledges die. The challenges they face are immense. Most die of starvation. Maybe the older sibling will stay around the nest and have a long sibling chat with Tiny Tot telling them of the dangers and the scary things they might face. Are there gators around St Petersburg? would an Osprey think they were a log and land on their back? What about all the other birds trying to catch fish. Someone trained in watching Ospreys fish said that it takes approximately 15 tries before an experienced bird gets their catch. That could be exhausting and frustrating for first year birds who probably take many more tries.

The older sibling arrives ravenous and heads right to Tiny’s fish.

Whichever sibling you are, it is nice to see you. Tiny Tot does not mind sharing. He knows that Diane will allow you to eat the fish and then she will take it and feed everyone – and that is precisely what she did when the 7:56:11 fish arrived on the nest. The older sibling was so hungry that it really put up a fight with Diane for immediate control of that fish. She gave in and then twenty minutes later took the fish and fed both of the chicks. The older sibling will sleep with a full tummy tonight – perhaps the first time in a week.

Here comes Diane with that nice fish.

The older sibling begins trying to pull the fish off Diane’s talon.

He’s got it. Notice that Tiny Tot is not making a fuss or mantling.

Diane lets the oldest sibling feed on the fish for about 20 minutes and then she takes over and feeds both of the osplets.

The older sibling was on the nest when Jack brought the first fish in at 7:15 Wednesday morning. There was a scramble and Jack wanted to get out quick. The older sibling grabbed the fish. Let’s see how happy Tiny is if this happens all day!!!!!!!!

I cannot even imagine what it is like to be a first time bird parent. Wonder what it is like trying to feed a moving bobble head? Their heads bobble back and forth and the beak of the parent is large and well, it takes time to figure out precisely how to coordinate feeding.

Telling their partner that they need a convenience break or to get out and get some more fish on the nest is sometimes difficult. Watching some of the more ‘power’ couples, they seem to know what the other needs before they scream out for it. Aran always has fish on the nest for Mrs G. She needs to eat just like the Qs.

Today, NC0 needed a break. She flew off the nest. Laddie flew in to watch over the little one. Laddie needs to get with the fish deliveries, however. He has to provide food for both NC0 and the little one.

At an earlier feeding, NC0 did a good job feeding the little one and it also held its head as straight as it could. Tomorrow they will be even better. Now, we just need fish, Laddie!

Her is a bit of a giggle that was recorded when Nessie was first feeding the little one. Have a bit of a giggle. It is about 30 seconds long.

And now we have the second one arriving! Sure wish the rain would stop on this nest. It is hard to keep the babies dry and feed them when it is pitching down rain. So much to think about with little ones.

Osprey dads love to bring colourful items to the nest and Jack at the Dahlgren Nest is no exception. There was a big smile on my face today because Harriet has really cleaned up dad’s hoard of toys and plastic objects so that the two osplets can walk around. That must not have been easy! She usually buries the plushies in the rim of the nest but I wonder if she hasn’t just tossed them off?

Just imagine the challenges for an Osprey mom with four chicks? That is what this pair of Ospreys overcome every day in the Botrona Natural Reserve in Castiglione della Pescaia, Italy.

The first chick hatched on 1 April 2021. You can easily tell by their size which is the oldest and the youngest in the clutch.

They are all doing splendid. The nest is in a prey rich area and the parents have worked hard to make sure that each is fed. All four are thriving.

I would like to introduce you to another Osprey Nest, this time in Estonia. The nest of Marko and Miina is in the south of Estonia in Vorumaa. Miina is stunningly beautiful. In the image below you can see her dark wide necklace.

Miina is incubating three eggs. The first was laid on 17 April, the second on 20 April, and the third on 23 April. Hatch watch will officially begin on 25 May! This is the tenth year for this nest and everyone is very excited.

Why do I mention this particular nest in Poland and not another? The female is incubating four eggs!

You can follow Marko and Miina raising their family here:

I have been meaning to post information on a nest in the Bartlinecka Forest and I have waited to find out more information. Instead of waiting any longer, I would like also to introduce you to an Osprey nest on a 35 metre high artificial platform built by the Polish Committee for the Protection of Eagles. This has been a very successful nest in the past. Just look at that beautiful forest. The camera was just installed in 2019. Oh, the female has a beautiful necklace, too.

Congratulations to Aran and Mrs G on their second hatch!

The last bit of this morning’s news is that in the early morning, at dusk, Iris laid her third egg. Iris cannot help it. That is Mother Nature. So far Iris has mostly ignored incubating the eggs. If she has any free will from her hormones maybe that is it – or maybe she knows those eggs aren’t viable. Who knows? I love getting a glimpse of her when she comes to the nest! Each day is precious.

It is a partly cloudy day on the Canadian prairies and we are being promised rain. I hope that it really does rain for the nest week like it shows on my phone. Everything is so dry. Even so, there were some Brown Thrashers thumping about in my garden this morning. They are always a welcome sight along with the Purple Finches. Thank you so much for joining me. Take care and have a wonderful Wednesday.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I get my screen shots: Rybolowy Online Puszca Barlinecka, Scottish Wildlife and Loch of the Lowes, Eagle Club of Estonia, Botrona Natural Reserve in Castiglione della Pescaia, Italy, Dahlgren Osprey Nest, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, and Achieva Credit Union.

Monday episode of ‘As the Nest Turns’

Yesterday, the two eaglets in the Duke Farm Bald Eagle nest in Hillsborough, New Jersey, fludged. Big had followed Li’l up the branch and Li’l could not figure out how to get around Big to go back down. THe started flapping and the end result was both of the juveniles falling off the branch and flying off to the farmland. Today, the parents wisely put a fish on the nest and left it to lure the two back to the nest. Gosh. And it worked! Li’l flew in first and on to the nest for food and was followed by Big. Sighs of relief all around.

Parent in at 10:21 leaving a piece of fish for the two:

Little flies in about half an hour later, landing on a branch first and then flying down to the nest.

Li’l really enjoyed the fish! Big flies in on a branch a little later. Hopefully these two will now stay around the nest like Legacy who will be 100 days old on Tuesday!

For those worried that K3 is not getting enough to eat on the nest of Big Red and Arthur, the honour of having the first ‘slice’ go off the tower and land down below on the cars goes to K3. That was one powerful shot!!!!!! Didn’t I tell you he is a pistol? A puddle of full sleeping babies. Lots more starlings and few chipmunks this year. I wonder how that impacts the amount of prey that needs to be brought to the nest?

Big Red has them all line up nicely. Everyone eats at Big Red’s table! Everyone. There is no need to worry. I do think they would love a few tasty chipmunks if you happen to have extra in your garden!

Yesterday afternoon NC0, Nessie, at the Loch of the Lowes nest was listening to her chick chirping in the egg. This will be her first little one. It has to be very exciting. I do hope that Laddie, who is lucky to have such a beautiful mate, keeps up his end of the bargain and brings in lots of fish for her and the little ones. Pip was official at 6:15 pm on the 16th of May. Hatch watch is on for Loch of the Lowes!

Look at the top egg. You can see the egg tooth hammering away! Lots of work for this little one to do yet.

Oh, it looks like it is going to be a race between Telyn and Mrs G on the Glaslyn Nest. Just a few minutes ago a large crack was seen on camera.

Right now everyone in the United Kingdom is welcoming the second year Juvies back after their first migration. Those are the ones born in 2019 and, as you know, they are looking for their own territory and mates. Some have caused some mischief and some disruption!

Today, however, the Kielder Nests are celebrating something very special. A male, Blue 39 (11) born in Nest 1 in 2011, was last seen in 2014 at the Derwent Reservoir near Consett. There has been no news of Blue 39 until yesterday when he was photographed catching a fish near Hawick in the borders. This is just incredible news – survival always is. The photographer notified Roy Dennis at Rutland immediately – that is the thing to do if you see a banded Osprey in the UK.

There are some incredible images of this strong male on the Kielder Website here:

https://kielderospreys.wpcomstaging.com/2021/05/17/such-welcome-news/?fbclid=IwAR0LJ6zQO0Y1Xj8yMuQWaky-RimtIkVVqA-VXomoqP_WUeMgTN8EjlIinyE

Idris and Telyn have had one of Telyn’s sons with Monty, the very last one, KA3 hatched in 2019, return to their nest. But that is not all. Telyn is incubating three egg; the first was laid on 11 April so hatch watch is on. On 15 May she flew off the nest for a comfort break. Idris was on the camera pole and – a crow flew in. What could have been the saddest end of the season can be seen in this short video:

Everything is fine and Idris sent KA3 packing – it isn’t his nest anymore but as a male he returned to his natal nest area to find a mate and set up his own nest. Good luck KA3! There are some females out there looking! Go find a good one.

The two little ospreys at The Landings Nest on Skidaway Island (Savannah Ospreys) are doing great. They have the most beautiful plumage that I have ever seen! Dad brought in at least four fish, maybe five, yesterday for them. They went to bed with full crops and food coma! Scarlett and Rhett are doing a great job with these two.

Look at how the two blend in so well with the nest! 16 May 2021

The centre of my Bird World heart, Tiny ‘Biggie’ Tot gets stronger and more confident every day. It is simply amazing – a true tale of cleverness, persistence, and survival. Well done Tiny! I still believe you are a male – the third, the tiercel. You are going to join the leagues of the other small 3s who came back super strong – like Tegin Z1 of the White Egg and another of Monty’s boys, KA3, Hesgyn. If you know of a three that overcame tremendous obstacles, please let me know.

Tiny is a real beauty.

For those wondering about Tiger and Lily in the nest on a farm near Newton, Kansas, it has been really damp there today. One of the owlets was on a branch above the nest around 4am but I am not certain which one it was.Look carefully and you can see it standing where Clyde would come to drop the mice off to Bonnie.

The only child of the Bald Eagles at the Fort Vrain Bald Eagle nest in Colorado is doing splendid. Covered completely in thermal down, you can now see the contour feathers coming in! Someone asked me if the only children – Bald Eagles or Ospreys – get lonely. I have no idea but they spend their lives until they have a breeding mate alone – they even migrate to different regions. My immediate answer is I don’t think they are lonely. They are normally very well fed and cared for! The parents do have to play surrogate siblings so they learn to protect their prey. So, it is a little more work for the parents training them but less food to have to bring into the nest.

Thank you for nest hoping with me today. I will be watching the nests in the UK for hatches! Stay safe.

Thank you to the following for the streaming cams where I grab my screen shots: Achieva Credit Union, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Duke Farms, X-cel Energy, Farmer Derek, Cornell Bird Lab and Skidaway Audubon, Bywrd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, and Woodland Trust Loch of the Lowes.

Monty’s last hatch ever – of 2019 – returns to Wales as a juvenile

The ‘general’ understanding by Osprey researchers is that males return to the site of their own hatching to raise their families and the females relocate to the territory of the male. This has, of course, caused lots of problems if there are more males born in a certain region than females. But, today, that didn’t matter. The juveniles are returning from Africa! And there is no happier place than Wales where one fledgling from every clutch at the Dyfi nest has now returned – with the arrival of Hesgyn today.

Hesgyn was the last chick of the much loved Monty – Hesgyn hatched in 2019. He arrived two weeks short of his second birthday. He is in amazing condition – great DNA. That is his mother, Telyn, on the Dyfi Nest right now! Did she look up and recognize Hesgyn? Laura Culley would say, “And why wouldn’t she?”

Tears were flowing in Wales today.

Let us hope that Hesgyn and all his siblings find wonderful mates to bond with and then return next year to start their own families (if they are lucky enough to find the one!).

I want to recommend a book to you. It has completely absorbed me. The book is Belle’s Journey.

This is the true story of Belle, an Osprey that hatched on Martha’s Vineyard. Dr B fitted her with a satellite transmitter (he has fitted lots of ospreys with these). It is a story about migration and the challenges for the Osprey and the joy at looking at a computer screen and knowing they are alive! The book says it is for children – I think 11 year olds and upwards but what a joy for me, too. The illustrations are lovely and it is a page turner but, if you read a chapter a night, perfect as a bed time story. You could even get out a map and learn about the sites where Belle travelled – where she stopped and rested catching the fish to give her the energy to move onwards.

Hatch watch is on for several nests including Loch of the Lowes, Foulshaw Moss, and Glaslyn. In a couple of days, we will be checking on Telyn!

Thank you for joining me. Every one of the other nests that I check on regularly appears to be just fine this evening. The only one where there could be a change is the Achieva Credit Union Osprey Nest in St Petersburg. Sibling #2 left today and had not returned this evening. We must enjoy Tiny Tot while we can – there is no promise that she won’t fledge and be up and gone. Of course, the best scenario is for Tiny to hang around the nest for several weeks strengthening his flying skills.

Tiny did a great job feeding herself. Diane is looking to see if she will share and guess what? Tiny does!

From left to right, Jack, Tiny, and Diane. Just look at how ‘big’ Tiny’s wings are!!!!! She is filling in – . I will try and find a frontal view, a good one. Tiny has a beautiful necklace – one of those signs of a female, normally.

Take care all!

Thanks to the Achieva Credit Union for their streaming cam where I grabbed my screen shots of Tiny and Diane and the family threesome.