Saturday in Bird World

14 May 2022

Today is Big Bird Day when all the world is counting. The lists of the birds coming into the garden is growing and growing. For the first time, there have even been some Baltimore Orioles and the numbers of Harris Sparrows continues to grow. The rain forecast for this afternoon has been cancelled by the weather station and it is hoped that those traveling long distances to get to the north of our province have a good rest and feed before starting up that journey again. I made a decision to put out at separate stations many different kinds of food: sliced oranges, grape jelly, peanuts, Butter Bark, Black Oil Seed, White Millet, Solid Seed Suet, and Meal Worms. Gosh those European Starlings love the Butter Bark and the Meal Works while the Harris and Chipping Sparrows are taking to the Millet. It should be a big count by the end of the day.

Southwest Florida. The big eagle nest of Harriet and M15. Everyone thought that E20 had left for the long goodbye but look who is back on the nest branch this morning?

The streaming cam for the nest of Anna and Louis will probably be turned off on 20 May. It was a fabulous season down there with Kincaid that beautiful female. What a treat that she hung around the nest tree for so long. Indeed, she was there this morning proving to be a delight for everyone. It was so nice that Cody got the cam up and running after the latest storm.

Kincaid arrives at 11:19:20.

All of these fledglings will be leaving their parents territory – if they haven’t already – to find their own place in the world.

Speaking of fledglings, the Three Amigos at the West End nest are thinking about flying. Kana’kini hovered this morning. Here it is:

The security system seems not to be bothering the ospreys at the new Llyn Brenig Osprey nest in Wales. LM6 laid her first egg on the 25th of April. Dad LJ2 has been bringing in some fantastic fish. Wishing this couple all success this season.

It is sometimes very difficult to tell which osplet is which at the UFlorida-Gainesville nest. While this is a good thing, it is often hard to focus on who is eating and who isn’t. This morning was very interesting. I am hoping that the dominance attacks on Middle by Big are behind us.

A fish was delivered – it looked like it had been hacked up by a chain saw – by Dad at 08:32. The kids were squawking to be fed but Dad didn’t, as usual, by into that. He left the fish. While both of the chicks pecked about, it was Middle that really got into the self-feeding. Of course, he has had to do this for several weeks now to get any food at times. He is doing well. Mum comes in a little over an hour later and feeds the two. Both were fed.

There are male Ospreys that really like to feed their chicks. This Dad doesn’t seem to enjoy this part of the parenting. I am glad to see a big hunk of fish on the nest.

Middle has found the open spot and he should be able to get some good fish. Notice the ‘design’ of the feathers on the top of its head. That is a way of distinguishing the two. Big’s plumage is darker with a much longer tail, also.

Middle has done a good job on that fish. Another difference is the size of the wings. You can clearly see this below. All bets say Big sibling is another one of those robust aggressive females and our Middle is a male.

Mum comes to the nest. She is feeding Middle. Big is behind her just like yesterday. Interesting.

I wonder if Middle ever wishes that Big would just flap those wings and fly off? She will, Middle! The plumage is gorgeous. There is still a long way to go for that tail to be long enough for flight.

When Big Red laid four Red-tail Hawk eggs at the nest she shares with Arthur on the Cornell campus, everyone went into shock. Almost immediately thoughts of doom and gloom went through the community – fearing that the wee one, L4, would have the same fate as the youngest eaglets and osplets. Not so with hawks and falcons normally. Little L4 has been the first in line making its way through the gang if necessary to get on the front row. Today, L4 is skipping and flapping its wings! Big Red is going to be tired and Arthur has had to bring in more food than ever to feed his family but life is good and everyone is well.

Get the worry beads out! When these four start running and flapping from one end of the ledge to the other your heart will sink several times. But all will be well if you don’t see them as there are blind spots on the cameras. It looks like chippy is for lunch!

The California Condor chick that was hatching yesterday has hatched. You can get a wee glimpse of the newest member of the Condor family at Tom’s Canyon under Mum. The female is 846 and the male is 462. 462 hatched in 2008 and 846 hatched in 2016.

Here is a short video of the hatching:

Alden is trying so hard to be the best Dad and mate he can be. Alden will figure it out. Precious. He caught a moth and brought it in to feed to the chicks. I adore Alden! You know he will get this and he will want to take part in every aspect of the nestlings lives.

He is really hunting and getting the pantry full an those wee white balls are growing! The oldest is 9 days old today! And the youngest is 8 days old.

There are so many nests but I know that some of you will want to go and check on E20 or Kincaid if you didn’t know they were around the nest trees. Have a lovely Saturday. Please take care!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Llyn Brenig, Cal Falcons, SWFlorida Bald Eagles and D Pritchett, KNF, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, and the Cornell Bird Lab (RTH and Condors).

Friday in Bird World

15 April 2022

It has been a cracker of an afternoon in Bird World. The ‘New Guy’ – to finally have an official name at noon on the 18th – is ready to step in and incubate when Annie calls. I like this fella’. No, he will never replace Grinnell – he is his own endearing self. Through his kindness and generous spirit of heart, ‘New Guy’ saved this clutch and won the heart of Annie and so many of us. Precious.

The more I watch the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest, the more that Mum endears herself to me, too – just like the ‘New Guy’. At lunch time, she had a huge chunk of Mullet (please correct me if I am wrong) to feed the trio. That is nothing extraordinary but how she checked on Little Bit offering it bites when Big Sib had calmed down, how she moved the fish to feed again when Dad came wanting leftovers, well…none of the chicks were left out. They all had a nice feed. Little Bit is spunky, too. Big tries to intimidate both Middle and Little Bit but, thankfully, is not all that aggressive. They wait and head back up, sometimes walking right in front of Big to get to the beak. I am impressed.

Each raptor mother has their own personality and way of feeding. Some feed fast and only to beaks open at the front. This Mum is slow and methodical, not stopping til all are full unless the fish runs out. Oh, I wish I knew more about this couple!

Little Bit managed to get some nice big bites amongst lots of smaller ones.

The bigger siblings can eat more at one feeding than Little Bit but this morning it appeared that Little Bit did a bit of a crop drop and wanted more fish. Excellent.

When the Dad arrived the Mum went to protect the hunk of fish and the chicks moved up and she fed them more.

Then Mum moved the fish and continued feeding -topping everyone up. She is very, very smart. She topped herself up, too. It is hot on top of that light stand – fill the kids up!

Little Bit wants more fish and Mum made sure he got some more.

Mum ate some of the nice fish once the babies were full and sleeping.

Then she began to call for Dad.

Food comas.

The third hatch at the Venice Golf and Country Club Osprey got some fish at the beginning of the 13:07 feed. All three are fine.

Blue NC0 and Laddie now have two eggs in their nest at Loch of the Lowes. Congratulations!

B15 is believed to be a female. She certainly is a big fledgling. B15 has stayed around the Berry College nest of her parents, Pa Berry and Missy, learning to fly and coming for food. Missy loves to feed her baby! This is such a huge help to the success of this gorgeous juvenile. It was a great year for Berry College.

There is another fledgling happy to visit home. Oh, is Kincaid ever loud! He will be just as happy if Anna wants to feed him, too, like B15. Last year Kistachie shot out of the nest never to be seen again. That is not especially a good thing. This year Kincaid is hanging around to the delight of everyone.

There is Kincaid on the branch of the nest in the Kisatchie National Forest near Alexandria, Louisiana. The sound on their camera is simply incredible.

Want to have a listen? Here is the link to the camera. The laughing frogs will put a smile on your face.

Martin and Rosa’s eaglet at the Dulles-Greenway Eagle cam lost all that baby down and is getting its juvenile feathering. The change seemed to come in a blink of an eye. The eaglet hatched on 13 March making it (counting hatch day) 33 days old today.

Just look at those ‘Daddy Longlegs’ on Little at the Captiva Osprey nest! Good gracious. He will rival Idris!!!!!! Little got the 11 am fish. Lena is calling Andy to get some more fish on the nest. She is so loud, you could hear her in Fort Myers.

There was a wonderful article about the Bald Eagle Mum at the Pittsburgh-Hayes nest that defended her three eaglets against a determined intruder. Have a read and look at the picture. That was an amazing event on this nest. I would never want to make an Eagle mother upset – absolutely never.

https://triblive.com/local/dont-mess-with-momma-hays-bald-eagle-defends-against-intruder/?fbclid=IwAR3mMoCGGnzMsuESvp53P4ndAqCpyeHk6dCO_nlt8xKR4Wy-wc3KM8pDMK4

It is always nice to see Iris. What a joy it was when she returned to her nest at Hellgate Canyon in Missoula, Montana this year — the oldest Osprey in the world believed to be 28/29 this year.

So loved.

Port Lincoln posted a great remark on the chat for the PLO barge:

​”Who said Ospreys don’t fly around at night. Mum returned to the barge at 23.02 tonight and Ervie was fishing off the end of the main wharf at 20.47.”

It is always wonderful to hear about Ervie!

Aran and Mrs G have been in the nest. Later in the evening, the pair fly out to a favourite tree of Aran’s admiring their territory. This is what ospreys do on a Friday night in Wales.

Idris is on his perch while Telyn works on nestorations. She is a great one for moving large twigs. Wow.

A nice fish came to the Dale Hollow nest at 13:45. Both of the eaglets had a great feed.

Big is full and now it is Little Middle’s turn.

Then Big wanted some more of that nice fish.

Both eaglets were happy and had nice crops. A whole fish doesn’t go a long way anymore. If you count hatch day, the DH eaglets are 47 days old today.

Can you tell who is who?

The way to tell Little Middle is that he has a more prominent white ruffle on the end of his tail! (The angle of the camera makes Little Middle who is closest to the bottom appear slightly larger than he is but…that good fish is really causing this eaglet to grow).

It has been a great Friday in Bird World! The sun is still shining on the Canadian prairies, the wind is calm, and the snow has stopped. Nice.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: UFlorida ospreys, VGGCO, Woodland Trust and Friends of Loch of the Lowes, Berry College, KNF, Dulles-Greenaway, Port Lincoln Ospreys FB, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, Montana Osprey Project, Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dyfi, and DHEC.

Saturday in Bird World

26.02.2022

Good afternoon Everyone! The sun is shining bright on the Manitoba prairies this morning. Even 2 metres of snow looks beautiful! It is a balmy -8 C and it feels like summer. It is too hot for winter coats today. Now if all of this snow will melt slowly…ever so slowly so we do not have floods. The soil needs the moisture!

If you missed it yesterday, there is real cause for celebration at the American Osprey nests. Rosie has returned form her migration to be reunited with Richmond on the Whirley Crane in San Francisco Bay yesterday. Richmond had been hanging around the nest for three weeks. Some of us were beginning to worry a little and then…Rosie showed up right at dawn 06:43 on 25 February! If you are new to watching Osprey nests in the US, this is a rock solid nest. I am a huge fan of the UK nests and this is my number 1 for stability and the occasional humorous moment in the US. Richmond is great at fishing at night amongst other antics.

As you can see this is the couple’s sixth season on the Whirley Crane. Last year they fledged three fine Juveniles! Here is that great reunion video again.

Here is the link to their camera for those who do not have it. It is not on YouTube. The camera is, as I write this, currently off line.

https://hdontap.com/index.php/video/stream/golden-gate-osprey-1

Ervie did not come to the nest yesterday as far as I could tell from having eyes glued on the screen and doing a lot of rewinds. The barge was visited by a number of the pigeon clean up crew and a lovely Cormorant. There was also another bird that landing on the moorings but I cannot accurately identify it. In the image below, the Cormorant is on the perch and the other bird is on the perch.

Port Lincoln has not updated Ervie’s sat-pak tracking yet. So, it remains a mystery where he captures his delicacies – those puffers!

There is sad news coming out of the Hilton Head Island Bald Eagle nest of Harriet and Mitch. I report on this nest occasionally. Two eaglets hatched and the last time I checked on them they had their juvenile feathers and were self-feeding. Yesterday one of them was found on the ground below the nest. It has been taken to Corvian Avian Conservation, a wildlife rehab clinic. It is unclear the state of the eaglet at the time it was rescued. This morning food has been brought to the nest. The remaining eagle did mantle the prey and is seen eating but not enthusiastically. The nest is being monitored. There is some concern that the bird prey brought might have avian flu, the highly pathogenic H5N1 strain that is spreading. I assume the remaining eaglet might also be removed from the nest for testing if authorities are concerned. Will monitor and post.

I will do a post just on Avian flu early nest week. There are other nests where the eaglets have fallen over the edge of the nest and they are being tested. Do not discount it. This is very, very serious. There are virologists looking at these deaths to try and understand the spread and the remedies. It could impact much of the nests other than the Ospreys who seem to be less prone because they eat fish almost entirely.

We all worry when these things happen and it is easy in small nests where there is prey competition, parental neglect, and a lot of wingersizing. I want you to watch, when you have time, this lovely video of a rescue of two eaglets in Sweden so you will understand that wildlife rehabbers can do amazing things. This is a heart warming story of individuals who really wanted a success.

The number of people watching the nest of Jackie and Shadow at Big Bear, California continues to grow. It was 2131 not long ago. Today is pip watch and you can join in, too.

While we were focused on the Captiva Osplets, Ervie, or Jackie and Shadow, something wonderful was happening over at the nest of River and Obey at Dale Hollow Lake. Twins hatched at 11:16 and 11:51 yesterday. There is a pip in the third egg. Wow.

If you are wondering where Dale Valley Lake is, it is in Kentucky. It is one of the oldest human made lakes in the region, created out of the Obey River, in 1943. Now you know how these two eagles who have used this nest for six years came by their names. The lake has 27,700-acres of water and is well stocked with fish for the Baldies.

Just when I praise the nest for being located right above the lake, I see Dad has brought in a rabbit for the eaglets lunch! Too funny.

Here is a link to the streaming cam so you can join this nest with the two grey little bobbles and another on the way:

I suggest you put this nest on your watch list. I am really hoping that the parents will not bring in any birds to this nest due to H5N1’s potential spread.

Kincaid is doing really well at the Kisatchie Forest Bald Eagle Nest near Alexandria, Louisiana. Louis brought in another big fish and Kincaid is really enjoying this late morning feed. Like many nests located near a stocked body of water, Louis mostly brings in fish but he also brings in Coots and other waterfowl. If you are new to watching Bald Eagles and want to add a nest to your long list, I highly recommend the KNF nest. It is on YouTube. Cody and Steve have made sure the image is great and the sound is awesome. Next year they will have the two nests on Kincaid Lake on camera. Great moderators on chat. Cody and Steve are often on there to answer your questions along with Tonya.

Normally I start with the Captiva Osprey Nest but, today, I will almost close with it. Lena was hollering at Andy to get a fish on the nest at dawn. I could not see a delivery. Please correct me if I am wrong. By 09:34:03 Big Bob was getting agitated and did some beaking.

Little Bob was smart. He moved far to the right out of harm’s way. You can barely see him. He has his neck stuck down in the twigs. Smart.

Their last feeding was in the afternoon yesterday and the trio were very hungry by the time Andy landed that fish on the nest at 10:30:42.

It was a large fish and Lena moved around the nest making sure that each of the babies was full.

They are all lined up nicely to eat. Big Bob’s slight aggression ended as soon as food arrived. Please note that if you are reading the chat, the moderator calls this ‘playtime’. They are all a week old and some aggression is typical at this age but more so now that the early regular and very stable feeding routine has been thwarted.

I hope that Little Bob gets up in the front despite the fact that he has one of the longest necks I have seen on an osplet!

Lena will continue to fed until the fish is gone if that is what it takes to fill her and the babies to the brim.

Nice crop!

It is now 12:43 nest time in Florida and Lena is yelling at Andy for fish.

It is 13:32. Lena is calling Andy again and you can hear him in the distance along with the cheeping Bobs.

There are so many recreational vehicles on the water today. I wonder if this is hampering Andy’s fishing. It is also quite warm in Florida today. Lena is doing a good job of shading the babies who cannot yet regulate their own temperature.

Til later…

We all need a giggle and today’s laugh is brought to you by a Raven in Poole Harbour, England at the nest of Osprey CJ7 (Rutland fledge 2015). The Raven is leaving two lovely chocolates that it will bury in the nest. How romantic a gesture this could be. I hope that this is for the arrival of CJ7 and the male, Blue 022, that we hope will also return and have their first successful breeding season together. If you want to see the whole video posted the Poole Harbour Osprey Project, please head over to their FB page. You do not need to be a member.

Here is the link to this streaming cam. Last year it was too late for this potential couple who delighted observers with their mating antics all over the town. If we get a hatch and a fledge, it will be the first time in over 180 years since their extinction! That is something to cheer about.

And on that happy note, I will say goodbye. Keep your eyes out for Ervie and a pip at Big Bear and a successful hatch for Dale Hollow. Things are really gearing up. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Poole Harbour Osprey Project, KNF Bald Eagles, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Dale Hollow and Golden Gate Audubon and SF Bay Ospreys.

Sunday in Bird World

Yesterday my friend, ‘R’ saw an article in her local newspaper in PA, the Philadelphia Inquirer, by Rita Giordano. Its title was ‘Copper Bullets could help with eagles being poisoned by hunted animals’. Today, one of the FB groups that I belong to trying to end lead poisoning in birds – both flying and waterfowl – posted some information. I would like to add fishing equipment to these topics, not just bullets. That article, ‘Those Bullets that kill Birds’ will be coming tomorrow. Sadly, those that hunt and fish with lead equipment will probably never read my blog but, hopefully, it will inspire you to reach out to those you know who do fish and hunt with the consequences and how they can help be part of the solution.

I am also working on Avian Flu and falcons. That is coming up.

It started off a wet yucky day in Jacksonville at the nest of Gabby and Samson. By mid-day, the eaglets were drying out. Poor Gabby needs to go to the stylist!

Gabby is an amazing Mum. I love watching her take care of her babies. She tries so hard to get them under her so she can keep them dry. She was also spread out like a huge Mumbrella at one time.

It’s a nice fresh fish for the family. Those babies are getting their mohawks.

It was the same for Harriet, M15, E19 and 20 at the Fort Myers Bald Eagle nest on the property of D Pritchett. The one difference between Harriet’s eaglets and Gabby’s is their age and their plumage. E19 and E20 have their juvenile feathers and the rain and cold can be controlled by them – but not by E26 and 27 yet.

still Harriet tries to stuff those big babies underneath her!

R1 and R2 were soaking wet when they woke up at the WRDC nest in the Miami Zoo, too.

Ron and Rita’s nestlings look more like eagles now. My goodness. They are catching up with E19 and E20.

The Osceola Bald Eagle nest looks dry. The Mum was there feeding the eaglet this morning even though it can easily feed itself now.

It is difficult to tell if there is a pip on the first egg for Andy and Lena at the Captiva Osprey nest. Lena has been rolling the eggs and calling for Andy to bring her some food! He brought in a small fish earlier but she is still hungry.

The poor Mum at the Duke Farms nest is under some snow! Dad has brought in food and has done some rotations in the incubation rota with her.

It is pretty nice down in Louisiana. Kincaid always looks so lonely on the nest when he is there by himself, just like the little eaglet at Berry and Osceola. The truth is that Bald Eagles are solitary birds, most often. It probably doesn’t bother them at all – just me! Anna is going to feed that entire fish that Louis just brought to Kincaid! His crop will pop.

The forest rangers are going to add an IR light that will light up the canopy of the tree, more sound, and a new camera. The sound they have now is incredible. This morning Kincaid was food calling and those little cheeps just tugged at your heart strings.

Are you a fan of Bonnie and Clyde, the Great Horned Owls that took over the Bald Eagle nest on Farmer Derek’s property last season? If so, the GHOWs are back! They have visited the nest but no egg was laid last night.

You can see one of the Owls on the branch above the nest at dawn.

Remember that the owls are active during the evening and night – and most active at dusk and dawn. Once Bonnie lays her first egg, she will remain on the nest taking some breaks with Clyde providing food.

Here is the link to this camera:

On the 11th of February, three days ago in Orange, Australia, that little cutie pie Xavier chased a Wedge-tailed Eagle – the largest raptor in Australia – out of his territory! The encounter was caught on the new tower cam. Xavier, you are amazing.

This is the best I could do from the streaming tower cam. You can see the wings of the Wedge-tail eagle in a downward stance to the right of the image. Below and to the left you will see a small dark spot. That is Xavier.

Here is a 3 min 20 sec video on this magnificent bird so you can see how large a Wedge-tail Eagle is and then you can marvel more at Xavier’s ability to get it out of his territory. A short introduction to the Wedgie.

We are in the midst of another blizzard. The snow coming down is not big flakes but it sure is blowing. I thought I caught Dyson eating the nut cylinder but when I cropped the images it was Scraggles eating all those nuts. Dyson is sure missing out! Yesterday, no one in the garden had hardly touched this lovely nut cylinder and by the end of the day, Scraggles might well have eaten it all. Do squirrels get tummy aches?

The snow is sticking to Scraggles’s fur.

I love how Scraggles moves around eating the seed cylinder and hanging on. That cylinder was more than triple the current size when Scraggles started out. He is eating well and looks quite healthy except for his tail which is actually growing back. We believe he had a bad encounter with one of the local cats.

The Sparrows are all puffed to stay warm.

I put some chopped peanuts, meal worms, and Bark Butter balls on the snow for those that wanted to eat off the ground. It was nice to see the Starling and the Sparrow sharing the food.

Little Red has decided to stay inside his penthouse today. I have not seen him out at all. That suet he ate yesterday should keep him full for several days.

The Port Lincoln Osprey cam is offline again. It has just not been the same since the big storm. Hopefully it will be back up shortly and we can check on Ervie.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: NEFlorida and the AEF Bald Eagles, SWFlorida and D Pritchett, Duke Farms, Osceola Bald Eagles, KNF Bald Eagles, Captiva Osprey Cam, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, WRDC Bald Eagles, and Farmer Derek.

Why do some Bald Eagles have ‘wing bling’?

If you watch the West End eagles on Santa Catalina Island, you will have noticed that there are tags on their wings similar to the tags on the wings of the California Condors.

It all goes back to DDT and the near extinction of the Ospreys, Bald Eagles, and other birds from the United States. Sea life has been impacted and so have humans. After World War II DDT was used to eradicate for mosquitoes in the US. Various areas received high amounts of this toxin. It wasn’t just the spraying but also the illegal dumping of hundreds of thousands of tonnes that has caused harm. Indeed, the waters off Catalina Island, for one, became a dumping ground for DDT.

In 2020, an article appeared in the Los Angeles Times about the finding of the rusting barrels of toxins leaking near Catalina Island. (The scientists were looking for methane).

The author says, “As many as half a million of these barrels could still be underwater right now, according to interviews and a Times review of historical records, manifests and undigitized research. From 1947 to 1982, the nation’s largest manufacturer of DDT — a pesticide so powerful that it poisoned birds and fish — was based in Los Angeles.”

“DDT is so stable it can take generations to break down. It doesn’t really dissolve in water but stores easily in fat. Compounding these problems is what scientists today call “biomagnification”: the toxin accumulating in the tissues of animals in greater and greater concentrations as it moves up the food chain.” The birds at the top of the food chain, often referred to as the canaries in the coal mine are the Ospreys who eat the fish and the Bald Eagles.

This is a fantastic read. I urge you to take the time so that when you hear about the impacts of DDT you will understand the history and the harm.

https://www.latimes.com/projects/la-coast-ddt-dumping-ground/

In 1980, there was a reintroduction programme of Bald Eagles into the Santa Catalina and San Clemente Islands. Even until 2001, the eggs were removed and fostered and the chicks banded. Between 1980-86, 33 Bald Eagles were released on Santa Catalina. These birds grew to adulthood even breeding but due to the DDE levels, the eggshell thickness was still compromised. You might recall that Jackie and Shadow at Big Bear have problems with thin eggshells today. Big Bear Lake was heavily sprayed with DDT and it is residual in the soil. The tagging program can be seen with the tags on Thunder and Akacheta. Their chicks, should they hatch and survive, will be banded as part of the continuing study.

https://www.tapatalk.com/groups/chil_eaglecam/wing-bling-reference-chart-santa-catalina-and-san–t11469.html

From the findings of scientists now, the number of barrels of DDT in the waters of this area rusting and leaking are growing. In April of 2021, more were found.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2021/apr/29/californias-legacy-of-ddt-waste-underwater-dump-site-uncovers-a-toxic-history

For those who would like to go back to the 1970s when the alarms were being sounded by various individuals including Rachel Carson, a good read is The Silent Spring. I would hope that most local libraries would have copies. As you can see, the storage and long life of DDT and the fact that it does not break down in water, is a continuing concern for all the wildlife and humans around the Santa Catalina Island which is now controlled by the US Navy.

In other Bird World News, there was a major storm going across the Eyre Peninsula, home to Port Lincoln and Ervie. The camera has been off line for some time. There were several nests waiting for food deliveries this morning including the KNF nest, home to Kincaid, in Louisiana.

It was wet at the NEFlorida Nest but, because the chicks are younger, there are still piles of fish in the pantry.

Have you noticed that as the nestlings get older the amount of prey on the nest declines? A small fish was delivered to SWFlorida E19 and E20 but that nest is empty of prey also. No worries. It is something to notice as the eaglets develop.

Thank you for joining me today. It is a beautiful morning -1 on the Canadian Prairies. More snow is due to start mid-afternoon. I am going to go out to try and see some birds! The Snowy Owls are still eluding me! Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to Explore.org, NEFlorida Bald Eagle Cam, and the AEF and the KNF for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots.

Tuesday in Bird World

There is definitely snow and more snow and it is either still coming down or blowing like it is! Goodness.

Both Mr and Mrs Chickadee were flitting around on the vines under the eaves trying to find a place to get out of the wind. The Starlings are waiting for the Butter Bark feeder to be filled and dozens of House Sparrows are eating snow. It is a ghastly day for them. And for people. I think my appointment for a hair cut is once again cursed. Wish me luck though. I am going to try and make it!!!!!!!!

In all the flurry of the storm news, I missed the quick change over at the Royal Albatross Quarry Track Nest. No sooner had YRK returned to relief OGK and he was back – in a day! Oh, the foraging must have been really good. That is fantastic.

There is the Royal Cam dad, OGK, first thing in the morning looking so content.

Someone is sleeping on the nest on the deck of the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge. Is it Ervie? Sleeping in the nest seems ‘odd’ for the adults. What do you think? Is that a sat-pak on the back of that Osprey?

The winter storm warning for the US appears that it will be hitting Oklahoma around 21:00 tonight and moving eastward. I wonder what some of the nests will look like tomorrow?

The eaglet-without-a-name-but-soon-to-have-one is really getting its thermal down! Changing every day. There is another duck delivery and a bird with white feathers was slipped in some time when I wasn’t watching. Wind and some slight rain at the nest currently.

It is a bright sunny day at Big Red and Arthur’s nest. The snow and ice has not reached there yet.

It is still nice and sunny and clear in Hillsboro, New Jersey where our Mum at Duke Farms is incubating two eggs.

It still looks alright at Berry College. B15 is also getting its thermal down and it is such a cute little baby. Pa Berry and Missy must be proud.

R1 and R2 are doing great. You can see what full coverage of that thick thermal down looks like when you look at them and then look up at the little eaglet at Berry where the thermal down is just coming in.

R2 is the one at the front holding on to the fish that it will continue to nibble on. These two can be real comedians.

NE26 and 27 are doing grand as well, the youngest of the eaglets now. If you want soft, cute, and cuddly that is the place to watch – NEFlorida with Gabby and Samson!

This has been a quick check on some nests. So far all looks great. The system that is moving through the US is going to impact lots of birds and wildlife as it pushes its way through. Hopefully nests with chicks on them or eggs will be spared the worst of it.

Thank you for joining me today. Stay safe. Stay warm.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: KNF Bald Eagles, NEFlorida and the AEF, NZ DOC, Berry College Bald Eagles, WRDC, Cornell Bird Lab, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, and Duke Farms.

Late Monday in Bird World

The ‘Alberta Clipper’ is just starting to impact Winnipeg with some light snow flakes. We are in an extreme blizzard warning area until tomorrow morning when the winds and snow – getting up to 90 kph (or 55 mph) – dissipate. The garden birds were a little strange today. They ate and left. Normally they come and stay all day but a couple of waves of different groups came and went. I suspect they were going to try and find a place to hunker down for the duration. This storm system is also going to impact a huge part of the US including my childhood state of Oklahoma.

It is snowing on the Storks near Freiburg, too.

There is wind and blowing snow in Durbe, Latvia, the home of Milda, the White-tailed Eagle. The sound from the camera’s microphone makes you shiver – the wind is just howling through the forest.

The female Bald Eagle at Duke Farms is also under some snow and it looks like she might get more as this weather system moves through the eastern US.

There is good news in Bird World. Both of the USS Bald Eagles were seen at the nest today. The worry last night over whether or not there was an injury melted away. Nice.

The thermal down is coming in on the eaglet at the KNF in Central Louisiana. The light natal down is giving way to dandelions. Notice how much longer the beak is and how large the cere has become. The cere is the soft fleshy part above the black beak, seen below. The cere varies in shape, size, and colour amongst raptors. The beak will turn that beautiful yellow when this eaglet is approximately 4-5 years old and be pure yellow by the time it is 6 years old. At that time, it will also finish getting its adult plumage including that full beautiful white head.

The meals are more spread apart but the eaglet is eating longer and its crop is getting much fuller. Just look below. The crop is a pouch along the espophagus. It stores food before it gets to the stomach. It also processes prey items that cannot be processed in the stomach. The raptor will regurgitate a compressed pellet of those items that do not go to the stomach.

The Wildlife Biologist has just confirmed that this crop is at least 3-4 inches (10 cm) long! Wow.

Poor Baby. It took some maneuvering with the weight and flopping of that crop for it to get in a position to PS. Obviously the crop weighs more than the chick’s bottom does.

This baby has really grown in the last 4 or 5 days and is changing more and more with every blink it seems.

Despite being full to the brim and hardly able to move, Anna is making certain that the little one is topped up before bedtime.

NE26 and 27 are awash in Spanish Moss. The nest seems to be covered with it and fish. Lots of fish.

There are those sweet little fluffy dumplings in the nest bole.

Sleeping quietly under Mum.

At the WRDC Nest in Miami, R1 and R2 have popping crops, too. The pin or blood feathers can be seen coming in through the thermal down.

R1 is closest to you. R2 without the fluffy hair is in the back and also has a large crop. Both eaglets are doing well and there is plenty of food on the nest.

The 2022 Albatross Count on Midway Atoll is completed. Here is the information as it was posted by Friends of Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge today:

YRK flew in and switched places with OGK yesterday at the Royal Albatross Quarry Track Nest in New Zealand.

Lady Hawk caught that sweet reunion.

The camera is still offline in Port Lincoln. Would love to have had a good look at our Ervie.

Tuesday February 1 is Lunar New Year for many of our friends. For all of you celebrating the Spring Festival, we wish you a healthy, happy, prosperous Year of the Tiger.

Thank you for joining me today. So happy to have you with me. Stay safe, stay warm!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cornell Bird Lab and the NZ DOC, Friends of Midway Atoll Wildlife Refuge FB Page, KNF Bald Eagle Nest, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, WRDC Eagle Cam, Duke Farms, Latvian Fund for Nature, and the Stork’s Nest Livestream.

Late Sunday in Bird World

The other day, Jean-Marie Dupart took photographs of a Scottish Osprey in the Saloum Delta in Senegal. The band on the leg, slightly obscured, could read JJ2 or JJ7. JJ2 was believed to be a female at the time of banding. JJ7 was believed a male at the time of its banding.

Here is the photograph Jean-Marie Dupart took of the Osprey in question:

The Woodland Trust and People’s Post Code Lottery put out the following announcement today:

I had so hoped it was JJ7 but, in the end, it is wonderful to see a healthy Scottish fish eagle that hatched in 2019.

In a sadder note, the H5N1 highly pathogenic strain of Avian Flu that killed the two white-tailed eaglets in the spring of 2021 is striking again in the UK. First swans were culled and now the Whitby Wildlife Sanctuary in Yorkshire.

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-york-north-yorkshire-60188953

Ervie has been waiting on the nest hoping that Dad would either bring him a fish or that he would catch one as he focused on the beautiful waters of the cove. And then, at 8:20:39, Ervie finds an old fish tail on the nest. He did several double takes when he saw it a few seconds earlier. What a delight! An old dried up fish tail for our lovely boy.

Ervie really enjoyed that old piece of fish.

Ervie had been standing fish calling to the parents missing that piece of tail down by his talons. In the image below you can see that this is not a big piece of fish but for Ervie, it must have felt like he had found gold in that nest.

Gosh, Ervie is a handsome Osprey.

Ervie is still working on that old piece of dry fish. He is not giving up.

And he is still working on it…

You can see from the time how long Ervie has been pulling this dry fish. He is making good progress. Ervie would love to share some of the fish from the KNF nest! But he is not going to give up until he eats every single scrap of this tail. That is why you are a survivor, Ervie.

While Ervie is dreaming of having a big fish soon, the eaglet at the KNF nest in Louisiana has been filled to the brim by Anna. Look at that crop. Incredible.

Anna is making up for missing the feedings yesterday afternoon but, at the same time, Louis did a fantastic job taking care of the eaglet. The baby was never hungry and always had a bit of a crop. Louis was extraordinary – just like Samson was when Gabby was away for 24 hours before NE26 and 27 hatched.

Diamond did not seem to spend the night at the scrape but she is on the ledge early this morning. I wonder how much the hot weather impacted her and Xavier? As you know, many Peregrine Falcons wound up in care from dehydration.

Last breeding season the Mum at the Duke Farms Bald Eagle nest spent most of it buried in snow. This year is starting off the same way. Whether it is extreme heat or extreme winter storms, our feathered friends are being impacted.

Mum will keep the eggs warm and dry. These eagles are amazing.

I wanted to do a last check on the WRDC eaglets, R1 and R2. They are doing fine. R2 is being fed at the moment which must mean that R1 is full! You can tell the difference between the two because R1 still has a big drop of light natal down on its head.

If you are a Pittsburg-Hayes eagle fan, the couple were just mating on the tree. Eggs are not normally laid til 15 February or after. I wonder if they will be early this year? Looks like they have a nice egg cup created. Last year this couple raised triplets. Yes, three eaglets. 3.

Thank you for joining me today and for all your letters and comments. I really enjoy hearing from you. Take care everyone. Stay safe!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: WRDC, KNF Bald Eagles, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Duke Farms, Charles Sturt University at Orange Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, Friends of Loch Arkaig Ospreys, and Pix Cams.

Anna

Louis was feeding the little eaglet at the KNF nest site this morning. I really slept in – after worrying about the disturbances around the nest – and Anna being unseen on the nest since 14:06. I immediately thought Anna was not there and my heart sunk.

As it happens, Anna was distressed. But, she was on the nest brooding the baby last night. The moderator could not get to see Anna’s right eye – it is the only well to tell her and Louis apart – and believed it to be Louis still on the nest. And so did the rest of us! The behaviour was very odd. The mother could not relax and kept looking around. The only conclusion that I have is that she was stressed by the people around the nest and in a boat on the water and, of course, by the nearby gun shots.

I am thrilled that Anna is OK – over the moon. I don’t want to see eagles distressed like this couple yesterday. Maybe it is time to ban people from areas around nests during breeding season.

Thank you so much for joining me for this quick report on Anna. I will be back later this afternoon with a review of the nests. Take care everyone.

Thank you to the KNF for their streaming cam where I took these screen captures.

Where is Anna?

At 12:12 Anna, the female Bald Eagle at the Kisatchie National Forest nest (KNF) lets her mate, Louis, take charge of the eaglet so she can have a break. It had been a good morning.

Anna, the perfect Mum, protecting her growing eaglet from the hot sun. Look at how nice he is standing up so straight.

Louis took over the task of caring for the little one. Anna touched down on the nest and was last seen at 14:06. There she is standing on the fish.

Louis got better feeding the little eaglet over the course of the afternoon.

Louis is brooding the chick. He is not only a great provider but proves he is up to the task and is taking charge. He isn’t sleeping though. He is awake and alert listening.

The nest is in a non-hunting area. There were, however, two gunshot sounds in the afternoon at 16:14:35. There were also loud voices of people. At 16:57 it sounds as if there are two eagles chatting to one another. One of them with a hoarser voice than normal.

Is Anna injured? The rangers will go out and search for her. Was she shot? Let us all hope not. It was way too sad when the Eagle couple from area 2 were killed by gunshot.

Please send all your warm wishes to this fabulous nest – so full of hope, full of food, and two loving parents. This just shows us how challenging life is for these beautiful birds and how their good fortune can turn in an instant.

I am so sorry to bring you this news. I wish it were not so and we all wake up in the morning and realize it was Anna on the nest after all! Take care everyone.

Thank you to the KNF Bald Eagle streaming cam where I took my screen captures.