Bird World Happenings

For those of you hoping for a second hatch at Diamond and Xavier’s scrape box, it is not to be. Either the eggs were not viable or the second chick died trying to hatch. What we have, however, is one really healthy eyas whose eyes will open in the next few days and what a delight that will be. One healthy baby is just fine!

A video was made of one of the chick’s feedings. I cannot wait til it can see its parents! How wonderful.

It is pitching down rain in Port Lincoln. Mum and the three osplets are absolutely soaked to the core.

Mum is the best. She is trying as hard as she can to keep her three babies from catching a chill. Sadly, Melbourne’s weather says it is to have rainy periods through Saturday. I do hope the nest gets a chance to dry out for this incredible Osprey family.

To my knowledge no breakfast has come in yet. Mum is really tired and would appreciate the sleep. She has a smelly wet pillow!

It is an hour later and Mum is beginning to dry out just a little. Hopefully Dad will be in with a fish soon.

The Melbourne Four have already had three meals today – before 8:30! These parents are working overtime. It has to be exhausting. Look how big that little one is and how big its crop is. These four are also healthy and strong. Well done Mum and Dad.

Skipping over to the US, those who fell in love with Anna and Louis during their first year as Bald Eagle parents will be excited to know that the streaming cam is up and running. Here is the link to that nest at Lake Kincaid in the Kisatachie National Forest. Last year, Anna and Louis had one eaglet fledge, Kisatachie. It was wonderful to watch the parents grow into their roles as parents. One time Louis was so eager to provide food early on that he had 18 fish in a pile. I can sure imagine quite a few nests that would have liked some of that! Kisatchie grew big and strong and honoured this old Bald Eagle nest that had not had an eaglet hatch or fledge in 13 years. Incredible.

Cody, Steve and the gang are handling the chat to answer any of your questions.

I have not checked on the Black Storks from Latvia and Estonia for some time. There is some troubling news, perhaps. regarding Julge. This latest report is on Birdmap.

“In the morning September 8, Julge crossed border between Germany and Belgium and from next overnight there was not long distance up to France border, anymore. 20-30 km, depends in what direction Julge continues migration. But perhaps, there is time to improve energy sources? Interesting, if quarry is good place to find food for stork…. Anyway, Julge flew south in September 12. That means France is next country Julge visits. And stayed in a village called Saint-Hilaire-le-Petit. Nor dare not fear the closeness of people. He could be seen picking up insects from the lawn in the parking lot of the nearby Pontfaverger supermarket … But on the afternoon of September 21, Julge flew some 30 km in direction of Paris. On 22 September, Julge reached a stopover between Paris and Reims, where the latest data were received on the morning of 25 September. Next behaviour of Julge is unknown. A local newspaper is also involved in the searches of Julge.”

You can check the migration status of the Ospreys, Black Storks, White-tailed Eagles, Eurasian Cranes, and the Lesser Spotted Eagles here:

http://birdmap.5dvision.ee/EN

I also wanted to check on Karl II and his three children and on their migration status.

First is Udu. This is from the Forum: “It is now becoming unlikely that Udu will find/follow the ‘usual’ eastern migration route, I fear. All other options to cross the Mediterranean Sea are far more complicated, difficult and dangerous. Unless Udu will winter in southern Italy, or in Greece?” Udu is now in Kosovo.

Here is the map showing the three members of the family: Karl II, his daughter, Pikne, and son, Udu . They are making wonderful progress!

You can follow the Black Stork family whose nest was in the Karula National Forest in Estonia here:

This was just a quick check on the developments at the Orange Australian scrape box of Xavier and Diamond. I am certain that chatters and followers would loved to have seen two eyases hatch but, it was not to be. We can, however, wait with wonder to see the little one open its eyes and see its parents for the first time – and grow, thrive, and fledge. Send positive wishes for a fish to arrive at the PLO and for the rain to let up so the nest can dry.

Thank you for joining me. It will get chilly on the Canadian Prairies tonight – down to 4 C. It will certainly feel more seasonal. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or Forums where I took my screen shots: the Port Lincoln Osprey Project, 367 Collins Street Falcons by Mirvac, Charles Sturt University at Orange Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, the KNF Bald Eagle Cam, the Latvian Fund for Nature, the Estonian Eagle Club, and BirdMap.

Late Friday and Saturday in Bird World, 28 August

It is late Friday night on the Canadian Prairies. The much needed rain has paused and the weather news says it will start again soon. The rosemary and thyme growing in the garden boxes are thriving as are the Vermillionaires, planted specifically for the hummers. Perhaps they will find them as they return to their winter grounds.

This is the first year that there have not been hummers in early July around the flowers.

The tracking information for Pikne and Udu is in. These are the two fledglings of Karl and Kaia. Sadly, Tuul passed.

26 August tracking map shows Pikne flew only 11.5 km from her last stop. The Forum postings says, “S/he is still between the villages Mykhailivka, Khvoshchivka and Stavychany, Khmelnytskyi Oblast in Ukraine.” Do not let this short distance worry you. She has found a nice place to rest and feed for a day or two.

It looks like a beautiful area for Black Storks to pause in their long journey.

“File:Khmelnytskyi, Khmel’nyts’ka oblast, Ukraine – panoramio (59).jpg” by durik1980 is licensed under CC BY 3.0

The report for Udu on 26 August indicates that he is also taking a bit of a break. He flew only 6.19 km. He is eating and gaining strength from all the flying near a wildlife park in Niezgoda, Poland.

There is also a big water area for Udu similar to where Pikne is eating and resting.

This is the latest map for Udu:

The only surviving Black Storkling, Julge which means brave one), seen recently on Jan and Janika’s nest has begun his migration. This is remarkable – five days after fledging. He travelled 224 km and appears to be flying the same direction as Udu, Karl II’s male fledgling. Well done Julge. You have survived the horrors of the forest and the Raccoon Dogs that killed your siblings and you are flying. Stay safe!

One of the chatters for the Latvian Forum has been to the feeder to check on it and on Grafs and Grafiene’s storklets. The heron that we see often in the photographs remains at the feeder. Live carp could still be seen in the pond. While there, two black storklings came flying over him and into the forest. Sadly, in the excitement, he lost the card from his camera so there are no pictures. But the good news is that the feeder still has fish and that the two storklings of Grafs are together and alive. The third is believed to have followed Grafs off the nest and is feeding in a different area. This is all fantastic news.

There appears to be no activity on the Foulshaw Moss Nest in Cumbria. Polly Turner caught White YW looking for our Tiny Little but no Tiny Little. She is believed to have begun her first migration. White YW and Blue 35 raised three lively chicks. Dad stayed on until Tiny Little had the call of the winds to leave and made sure she was fed well. This is a great nest and we look forward to the return of White YW and Blue 35 next spring and to Tiny Little, Blue 463 (remember that number), when she returns in two years.

That nest looks so lonely and empty without Tiny Little there screaming her head off! The visual clue for an Osprey fledgling wanting food is that yelling that Tiny Little to White YW every time she saw him —- in case he forgot that she was hungry!

Diamond is still holding that egg! She had everyone excited yesterday but no, no egg yet.

Mrs G and Aran are still in Wales. The lovely couple sitting close to one another on the perch looking over the beautiful valley that is their territory and fighting off any intruders.

Mrs G, the oldest Osprey in the United Kingdom. Lovely. We hope they both return safe and well to raise a lovely clutch next year.

The camera operator gave a tour of the other side of the nest. Have a wee peek.

The nest has everything! A river with fish!

What a magnificent valley, so serene.

Maya is still at the Rutland Water Manton Bay nest with Blue 33. She was caught on camera for a couple of brief seconds today. So like Mrs G, Maya is still hanging back from starting her migration.

I have received word that WBSE 28 ate well and had a crop at one of the feedings yesterday. Here is a video that the Sea Eagle Cam posted to reassure everyone.

At Taiaroa Head, the Royal Cam Princess for 2021, Taiki, is getting really good at hovering. She is busy as a bee these days wandering around and visiting with her neighbours. If you want to see more of this little fluff ball, now is the time to watch her. It is near the beginning of September and fledge is usually the middle of the month. Perhaps she is precocious and will fly off earlier!

Can’t you just hear her saying wheeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!! She is destined to spend the next 5 or 6 years of her life flying over the seas of the Southern Ocean in search of food. Remember – every chance you get lobby to stop long-line fishing without bird protections. They are easy fixes and every fishing trawler can use these covered hooks and sparkly lines without much cost. They can bait the hooks and lower them at night at no cost with no harm to the sea birds.

About the time Tiaki flies off, Gabby will be arriving at the Bald Eagle nest to meet her handsome Samson near Jacksonville. Doesn’t time go by so quickly?

Every day I learn something new. In researching nature centres and the rights of animals I have come across some interesting information. I thought I would share it with you in the form of a very short little game. Meant for fun!

  1. Approximately how many birds were killed in 1886 to provide feathers for women’s hats in the US? a) 10 million; b) 15 million; c) 2 million; d) 7 million; or e) 5 million.
  2. Which of the following, mixed with Xylene and fuel oil, was sprayed in the Patuxent River in 1945? a) chlorine; b) Agent Orange; c) DDT; d) 2.4 D; or e) MPCA.
  3. Which of the following began in elite hunting circles? a) environmentalism; or b) conservation
  4. Which of the following was first concerned with air and water pollution? a) environmentalism; or b) conservation
  5. Who is the individual credited with lobbying to protect the Bald Eagle from hunters in the early 20th century?
  6. Can private citizens in the US sue over alleged violations of the US Endangered Species Act on behalf of a tree, an Osprey, spotted owls, red squirrels, etc? a) Yes or b) No
  7. Jackie and Shadow are Bald Eagles who have their nest at Big Bear, California. What chemical, not outlawed for nearly 50 years, continues to cause their egg shells to be thin?
  8. In 2021, deep sea explorers discovered something horrific off the coast of Catalina in California. It was a dumping ground for barrels of what pesticide?
  9. What is the biggest killer of songbirds in Canada?
  10. I am a nestling raptor. I am flapping both of my wings up and down in unison with my head held low. What am I doing?
  11. I am a nestling raptor. I am pancaked in the nest cup, keeping my head as low as I can. Am I happy that food is arriving on the nest? Afraid of a predator? or signalling that my mum is flying to the nest?
  12. How many deer hunting licenses were sold through the Department of Natural Resources in Wisconsin (or on line) in 2020? a) 226,718; b) 873,001; c) 174,569; d) 820,299; or e) 547,223

Thank you so much for joining me. It is cool and the day promises more rain on the Canadian prairies – and that is a good thing. After the heat of the summer, so many are telling me the crisp air of fall is their favourite time of year.

Several are working behind the scenes to get the information over what happened to Malin and what the outcome might have been — remember that video by Scotty Watson rescuing the juvenile Osprey on its initial flight — to the responsible authorities of Collins Marsh. This may take time but it is done so that Malin’s tragedy is not only remembered but also used to educate those who have Ospreys in their care.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Cornell Bird Lab and NZ DOC, and The Falcon Cam at Charles Sturt University in Orange and Cilla Kinross. I would also like to thank the Forum with the tracking for Karl II and his family.

Here are the answers to the fun quiz. Maybe we should do another just about the birds we love one day!

  1. The answer is 5 million, E. Birds of every species was used in millinery not just in the United States but also in Europe. It was one of the reasons that our beloved Ospreys became extinct. Some women decorated their hats with not only feathers but the stuffed remains of entire birds with their beaks, feet, and glass eyes!
  2. The Patuxent River was sprayed with DDT mixed with Xylene and fuel oil, C. When individuals returned from World War II having used DDT in various ways, it was accepted that it was harmless. Almost immediately, when DDT began to be used as an insecticide, problems were noted but this was not before vast areas of rivers were sprayed with DDT to lessen the mosquito population. The result was dead fish floating to the surface within days.
  3. Conservation is linked to the elite hunting and fishing clubs, B. Conservationists believe/d sport hunting was a worthwhile pursuit and they sought to protect entire species so that they could be hunted!
  4. Environmentalism is focused on a global connection and a global vulnerability of all life on the planet. Their early work was on air and water pollution and how they relate to every species. They promoted the interconnectedness of every living thing. When one thrives, we all thrive.
  5. Rosalie Edge took on the Audubon Society and hunters and lobbied to get the Bald Eagle protected. She eventually purchases Hawk Mountain and puts an end to sport hunting there.
  6. The answer is ‘yes’. The Endangered Species Act was signed into law after an argument before the US Supreme Court on giving legal representation to natural objects. The argument was first presented in a law review article titled, “Should Trees Have Standing?’. Supreme Court Justice William O Douglas wrote the preface. The first case was The Sierra Club versus Disney Corporation. The Sierra Club lost but, various legal arguments have been held to uphold the rights of owls, Florida Key deer, etc.
  7. The residual DDT in the ground and Big Bear Lake continues to wreck havoc on the shells of many birds including Shadow and Jackie at Big Bear. See Pesticides Documentation Bulletin, Volume 2, Issues 21-24.
  8. Deep sea divers have discovered leaking barrels of DDT at 3000 feet below sea level off the coast of Los Angeles near Catalina as reported in the LA Times, 26 April 2021, by Rosanna Xia. https://www.latimes.com/environment/story/2021-04-26/ddt-waste-barrels-off-la-coast-shock-california-scientists
  9. Cats. Some areas are now requiring that domestic cats be licensed and kept strictly inside. https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/cats-the-no-1-killer-of-birds-in-canada-1.3130437
  10. Mantling to protect my prey item.
  11. Keeping still so a predator near the nest will not see me.
  12. 820,299. The sales of hunting licenses during the first year of the pandemic were up 3.5% in Wisconsin. https://www.uppermichiganssource.com/2020/12/01/wisconsin-dnr-releases-deer-hunt-harvest-totals-license-sales-information/

Early Friday in Bird World

The Scottish Wildlife Trust has confirmed that the female, NC0, has left the Loch of the Lowes for her migration after receiving a fish from LM12, Laddie, on Sunday 22 August. This is a late departure. The female fledgling, LM1, migrated on 15 August, a week prior to her mother which is also unusual. The Scottish Wildlife Trust says that is only the second time in the history of the nest that a juvenile has left prior to the female adult. Laddie, LM12 and the male juvenile, LM2, are the only ones left at Loch of the Lowes. Here is the video of that last sighting of NC0:

Tiny Little was still on the Foulshaw Moss Nest this morning, 27 August, around 07:00 as confirmed by this image taken by my friend ‘SS’. I have tried to catch her on that nest so many times – even late in the night from the Canadian prairies but those efforts were to no avail. So glad to see this. Is it my imagination or does that crop look full? Maybe she is just hunched down.

Mrs G and Aran were still on the Glaslyn nest. For a bit of time, Mrs G was enjoying a flounder. However, there was other action around. It appears that KA3, Hesgyn, and Z2 Aeron, have been over at the Glaslyn nest.

Here is Aeron, Z2, one of Monty’s boys at the Glaslyn nest caught on camera:

Aran has been dealing with intruders. Are Monty’s lads helping? or are they the intruders Aran is dealing with?

You may recall earlier in the summer before Aran’s wing injury was much better that there was a suggestion that Z2 was the Osprey that Aran battled with over the river. Z2 even spent some time sitting on the Glaslyn Nest as you can see from the image above.

Z2, Aeron, occupies the Pont Cresor nest with 014 nearby. I would not draw the conclusion that Monty’s lad is being a friendly neighbour to Aran – you might be humanizing the situation too much. Perhaps Z2 would like that piece of prime real estate and Mrs G to go with it.

Hopefully Aran and Mrs G will put an end to that nonsense if it is true.

Watching over the territory.

Mrs G and Aran remained on or around the nest for some time. I wonder if Mrs G is waiting for Aran to be fully healed and ready for migration before she leaves? I just love seeing them together!

A quick check on the Black Storks in Latvia and Estonia. At the Jegova County Nest of Jan and Janika, one of their storklings, Julge, was on and off the nest during the day. This image was taken right before 20:00 as you can see from the time stamp.

There is now concern rising for Tasane. This is the most recent message from Urmas: “looking data I suspect problems with 7183, probably killed last evening quite near the nest. I can go there maybe afternoon, but depends how other duties can be solved. It is only warning, yet. … “

Karl II’s daughter, Pikne, is in the Ukraine, on 26 August according to her tracker. This is good news.

On 26 August, Karl II was in a small forest near Hlusk in Belarus. He is headed towards the Black Sea.

I seem to be unable to find data for Udu on the 26th.

There has been no sightings of the storklings at the Latvian nest. People are anxious and hoping that Jan Kuze will go and check around the nests just to make sure. This is such a very difficult time for all. The deaths of Jogeva’s Malbe and Karula’s Tuul have really hit the hearts of so many. The fear that another, Tasane, is lost is just spiking anxiety. Will Julge be the only one to survive? My thoughts go out to all the people who loved these storklings so much. Seeing them perish after thriving and all the efforts to feed them, drains everyone of what energy they have left. And that brings me to the end of this updating, almost.

As I said many times, the circumstances of Malin’s death ‘rattled’ me because they pointed out how governmental agencies like the Department of Natural Resources are more concerned with selling hunting licenses than protecting wildlife. That is the precise reason that Rosalie Edge bought Hawk Mountain – to get rid of the hunters and protect the birds! Malin’s death has showed me that any person can put the title ‘naturalist’ behind their name. It means nothing. Malin’s death has raised so many issues. Sexism has been revealed to be alive and well in Wisconsin! I could go on and on. It feels like Malin was a ‘canary in the mine’ – my canary. As the layers of the onion are peeled away, more is revealed and the more that is exposed the more troubling it is. And so, I have been slightly distracted and there was a misunderstanding that led to my reporting that Diamond laid her egg yesterday. She laid her egg on 27 August last year.

Diamond looks like she is about to pop. She must not feel so good. Today, Xavier brought her an Eastern Rosella for her lunch. Diamond would be delighted!

I hope while I have been writing that she lays that egg. She is starting to make me uncomfortable!

Word has come that WBSE 28 has had some food and remains with us. 28 needs to get large enough but, for now, it is learning to stay clear of 27 until it is so full it doesn’t care and goes into a food coma.

Take care everyone. Keep all the Black storklings in your heart. Indeed, keep all of the birds in your heart especially those that are migrating or beginning their migration.

Thank you to the following persons or the streaming cams where I took my screen shots: To ‘SS’ and the The Cumbrian Wilife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest for the snap of Tiny Little, ‘S’ and the Falcon Cam on the grounds of Charles Sturt University in Orange, The Latvian Fund for Nature, The Eagle Club of Estonia, and Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn.

The Sweet and the Bittersweet

Ah, the sweet and the bittersweet. All of my friends from the Achieva Osprey Club who loved Tiny Tot or Tumbles as so many called her, will remember that she was the last fledgling to leave the nest. She was there for precisely four months – worrying us, causing us to lose sleep, cry, hope, cry again, bite our finger nails to the quick and watch the hurricane warnings with great anxiety. And then, of course, the miracle of it all, Tiny Tot became the most fierce and dominant bird to hatch on that nest this year. She will survive anything. No doubt. Tiny Tot stole my heart because of her ferocious desire to live. She had been starved – not being allowed to eat for several 72 hour long sessions by her two older siblings – and she tried every way to get around and get the food. Of those four months, she had no food for 12 full days, scattered more in the first half than the last. In the end, Tiny Tot ‘didn’t take anything from anyone’. She could handle an intruder as well as an adult – and she did, many times protecting the nest alone. Here she is a few days before she left the nest for good. She was gorgeous and she was the first miracle of 2021.

The second miracle I often talk about, too, is Tiny Little on the Foulshaw Moss Nest of White YW and Blue 35. Like Tiny Tot, Tiny Little is the only fledgling left on the nest in Cumbria. Everyone else but dad, White YW, has migrated. She has benefited, like Tiny Tot, from getting well fed, getting her flight skills in order, and not being in a hurry. She was enjoying a nice fish tonight for dinner (nest time). Will it be the last on the nest? Or will we get the pleasure of seeing her tomorrow? There are still plenty of Ospreys hanging on.

Polly Turner caught Tiny Little with her fish in this very short video!

The view this morning from the Glaslyn nest is Aran overlooking the valley. It reminded me of the paintings of the German Romantic painter, Casper David Friedrich. Aran’s healing from his late May-early June injury is something to smile about as well.

Idris and Dysynni were still at home on the Dyfi Nest. Idris brought in quite the catch for his boy, Blue 490. Telyn has not been seen since around noon on Saturday, 21 August.

That fish is just amazing. Idris you are so strong and just a great provider!

And what a beauty Blue 490 turned out to be. A lovely male.

So proud of his fish!

You can’t see them – sadly the camera at the Llyn Clywedog nest of Seren and Dylan and Only Bob, Blue 496. John Williams reports seeing Seren fishing and Only Bob later in the afternoon today, UK time. So they are still with us.

Maya was still at Rutland yelling as loud as she could for Blue 33 to get that breakfast fish on the nest! Ah, so happy to see you Maya. You deserve the time to get in great shape after the kids have headed off on their adventure.

I mention all of these because I really hope that Tiny Little is in no hurry to get on with her life. Selfish me. I want to enjoy her for a few more days.

In Latvia, everyone is elated. One of the storklings of Grafs has found the feeder!!!!!!!!!!!!! It is a success.

No matter where you live, remember this, please. In the future when our birds are at risk with no food or water – an area can be designed for them with a decoy to lure them to the site.

So happy for our friends in Latvia. It has been a long worrisome year.

Discussed on the Latvian Forum today is also a theory that the male, Grafs, lured the storklings off the nest by flying close and then flying away. This was what was suggested by chatter Liz01, a long time watcher and forum poster, “After the first storklet leave the nest on August 23 and didn’t come back, someone landed on the left. He flew away and the Storklets followed his departure with their eyes .. they turned and looked towards the forest on the right. One of the two, the eldest, took courage and flew behind. I already saw it yesterday, but only the departure and wondered how it could be that he chose this route. Now I have the explanation. It could be it was flying with Grafs!”

That is a very interesting and astute theory. I have seen hawks take a small piece of prey to lure their fledglings from one hunting spot to another or Peregrine Falcons that tease the eyases with prey flying in front of them to get them to leave. It is certainly a very credible idea by Liz01. Here is the link to the page where you will find photographs and a short video of what she noticed.

The wind continues in Sydney, Australia. At this point I am not prepared to report on the White Bellied Sea Eagles nest. The amount of prey has dropped to the point that I fear that WBSE 28 will be killed by 27. I do hope that the situation turns around. I am still working on how best to deal with the situation that occurred with Malin in the hope that people will learn and help wildlife. In a few weeks, someone let me know how WBSE 28 fared. Thanks.

Last a very rare sighting of a White-tailed Eagle has occurred in King’s Lynn, UK. If you are an eagle fan, have a read. This is amazing news.

https://www.edp24.co.uk/news/rare-white-tailed-eagle-spotted-in-kings-lynn-8270552?fbclid=IwAR2wzMu2VsM9qykrr8KSXX86DC3MvUQZqzcCs00iNhJ7kTeIMFzxdBZMUfc

In Manitoba, we are celebrating the work of our great vets, the rehabbers, and the visiting vets at Wildlife Haven. We also have the Manitoba Peregrine Falcon Recovery Project. I will tell you more about that in a couple of days. For now, our grand dame, Princess is 19 years old. She hatched in Minneapolis in 2002 and was translocated to Winnipeg that same year. Two years later she meets up with her first mate. She has had 4! In 15 years, she laid 54 eggs, hatched 46 chicks with 37 fledges. More about her later this week and her rescue. Everyone is happy.

Take care everyone. I am hoping to let you know that Tiny Little is still with us and has not started her migration. Just a few more days, please, Tiny Little. And where are Karl II and family? Updated reports tomorrow. Stay safe. Be kind to one another. Protect our wildlife.

I am grateful to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, The Latvian Fund for Nature and the Latvian Fund for Nature Forum, the Dyfi Osprey Project, LRWT and the Manton Bay Osprey Nest, the Achieva Osprey Nest, and the Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn.

Grafs feeds his storklings

It is so nice to wake up and have some positive news after the last week of Osprey sadness. Between the two Ospreys near to fledging being euthanized so a light bulb could be replaced and the issues surrounding Malin’s fledge, well, it has been a week of frustration. However, I was so delighted to see that there is some hope for the Black storklings!

At 10:43 on 22 August, after a period of 44-46 hours, Grafs, the male adult at the Sigulda Black Stork Nest returned to feed his storklings. All of the storklings have now fledged. When Grafs arrived only one was on the nest.

While White Storks will feed their fledglings off the nest, it is unclear whether this is the case with Black Storks. The one – starving storkling on the nest – hit the jackpot and got lots of fish. Then a second flew in and there were fish left. The last did not get food but two of the storklings had crops for the first time in ages!

Amanda caught this on video:

This takes away the fear that Grafs had left the storklings and begun his migration! That is wonderful news. It is possible that he had to travel some distance to find this amount of food. We will wait patiently for his next delivery and hope, at the same time, that both Grafs and the storklings might find the feeder. This surely has to bring some relief to my Latvian friends.

In Estonia, Karl II remains near to the nest. His mate left long ago for her migration as have his three children. The transmitter reading for each shows they are all traveling southward.

Jan has arrived at his nest in Jergova County in Estonia to feed his three storklings shortly after 9 am on 22 August.

The storklings of Jan and Janika are beginning to hover and jump. It feels like such a relief that the storklings were fed. Hopefully Jan will return later with more small fishes or some larger ones for the three.

Osprey stuck for 2 days on the top of the Cottonwood Tree entangled in fishing line. This is really getting to feel like a DVD stuck in the player.

A Place Called Hope did the rescue! If I ever come back in another life as a raptor and am injured or entangled, please let me be found and taken to either A Place Called Hope or the Cape Wildlife Centre. They give 200% and aren’t afraid of a challenge!

The Scottish Wildlife Trust has announced today that LR1, the oldest fledgling of Laddie and NC0, left for its migration on 15 August 2021 ahead of the adult female. They waited a week to be sure. This is NC0’s second breeding season and she has surprised many with her fishing skills and her independent attitude. No one has yet has established what her particular behaviour is surrounding migration. In the history of the Loch of the Lowes Osprey nest, a fledgling leaving before the female has only happened once. Normally, the females leave 2-4 weeks prior. The experts at Scottish Wildlife feel that LR1, the female, was very confident and “she just felt it was the right time to go.” A short video clip was made of the last time LR1 was seen.

This is one of the best short documentaries on Peregrine Falcons featuring Annie and Grinnell at the U of California, Berkeley. It goes through all the stages from beginning to fledge. Just fantastic. Guaranteed to put a smile on your face and to get you ready for both the Collins Street and Xavier and Diamond kids.

The wind is blowing in Cumbria but that doesn’t stop Tiny Little, Blue 463, from screaming at dad that she wants a fish ———- and she wants it NOW! Blue 463 is definitely a female.

She flew down to the nest from the perch in anticipation.

And off she went chasing White YW!

Tiny Little you make me smile every time I see you. Go girl, get that fish!

Thank you for joining me today. I have no news of Malin. When I do I will share it with you. Take care. Be safe.

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: The Cumbria Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, The Eagle Club of Estonia, and The Latvian Fund for Nature. Thank you to A Place Called Hope for the image from their FB feed.

The First Egg for the Collins Street Falcons

Oh, my goodness. The male at the Collins Street Peregrine Falcon nest is nothing short of adorable. I spent all last year wanting to scoop up this stealth fighter in my arms and cuddle with him. Or dreaming of a Peregrine Falcon onsie. Wouldn’t that be cute on a toddler?

The first egg of the 2021 season has been laid on 21 August. Wow. It is eggciting.

You might be asking why the female is not incubating that egg. The female will not start incubating the eggs until the last one is laid. This is because the adults want the nestlings to be about the same size for the first fortnight so that there is no rivalry over food. Last year, the three big girls all hatched within a 24 hour period. There was never any sibling rivalry – that is what I love about falcons and kestrels. Once the last egg is hatched, they will be incubated for 32-40 days.

Mom looks so proud of herself!

These are some images from last year:

Mom brooding the triplets.

Dad feeding the girls when they are a little older – before they lose all that fluffy white down.

This year Mirvac, the property owners, are in charge of the streaming cams of the Victorian Falcon Project. You can watch these falcons from the very beginning.

Telyn at the Dyfi Nest, Wales. 20 August 2021

Some more great news. The Season of the Osprey will premier on PBS October 27 at 8pm! Please check your local stations for the exact time in your area. This is what they are saying about this documentary:

“Birds of prey exist in myriad shapes and sizes. Scores of eagles, hundreds of hawks and countless kites and falcons have all adapted form and behavior to fit diverse habitats. But in all the world, there is only one osprey. Following a single evolutionary path, it has conquered every continent save Antarctica. One bird, one design, unchanged. It is the only truly aquatic raptor, the sole member of its own taxonomic family. This one-hour, blue-chip special brings viewers into the life to this incredible raptor with a depth and intimacy never before attempted. Shot in and around Great Island Marsh, where the Connecticut River meets the Long Island Sound, cameraman Jacob Steinberg has achieved unlimited access to an osprey nest and captured the struggles, failures and triumphs of a single osprey family.”

Oh, I can’t wait!

I am afraid that I am having Malin withdrawal. A week or more ago I took a few video clips of Malin being fed by Marsha. I would like to share one of those with you now.

And another one of Malin exercising his wings.

It is so much easier when you know that the little one fledged, returned to the nest for food for 36 days or so, and then flew off to find their life. There is a level of anxiety when it doesn’t happen that way. I sure miss that little one. I have not, as yet, received any images of the two Osprey chicks found or any other news. I am hoping for tomorrow or Monday. It is a busy time of year for the wildlife rehabbers.

Two of the storklings have fledged at the nest of Grafs and Grafiene near Siguldas – the youngest was first and then the oldest yesterday. Only the middle remains. All have returned to the nest safely. The one that had its wing up against the far branch seems to be alright as well. That is good news. I have heard of no feedings since Grafs came in with some very small fish for the trio on 19 August. That means that if the storklings did not find the feeder – the two that fledged – they have had little food but nothing for two days. This is critical. There is concern that Grafs has left for his migration — it was the very initial concern. I want to remain hopeful.

Jan has fed his storklings but the meal was only tiny fish or worms. Urmas has not brought any more fish to the nest. Since he has fed them once and they accepted the fish, I hope that Urmas will do this again (he also left fish when he banded them and put on the trackers). It is not clear whether the anxiety of starvation is worse than having a human bring food to the nest.

These are very difficult times for everyone but they are especially difficult circumstances for these six starving Black Storks – rare Black Storks!

At the Black Stork Nest in the Karula Forest in Estonia, Karl II was still in the nest area. His transmitter told us. The two early fledges, Tuul and Udu, headed the wrong direction due to weather concerns and then turned south. Pikne travelled south from the beginning. New tracker information should be coming in soon. Safe travels all of you!

Oh, this youngster can really scream for food on the Loch of the Lowes nest. What a beauty. This is another good example of a ‘normal’ fledge. The chicks return to the nest to be fed and fattened up for migration.

I really want to put a plug in for the administration of the lochs in Scotland. No one is allowed on those lakes from April to the end of September so that humans do not disturb the birds. It means that motor boats with their leaking fuel are not chasing the Ospreys and making the water toxic. Gosh, I hope that only human powered boats are allowed. What a great idea – leave the lakes to the birds during breeding season. Three cheers for Scotland! This could well be the case throughout England and Wales also. I will try and find out.

And look what is on the Foulshaw Moss Nest. It is a flounder for the lucky chick that makes it to the nest first. Tiny Little!!!!!!!!! Where are you Tiny Little?

It’s a few minutes later and I missed that lucky fledgling that snagged that flounder! It’s gone. That leads me to believe that it was probably Blue 464, the male, the first to fledge. He likes to take the fish and eat it on the branch of the parent tree.

Thank you so much for joining me. I hope that you are looking forward to those falcons hatching as much as I am. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots and video clips: Scottish Wildlife Trust and Friends of Loch of the Lowes, Mirvac Corporation and the Collins Street Falcon Cam, The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, The Eagle Club of Estonia, The Latvian Club for Nature, Collins Marsh Nature Centre, and The Dyfi Osprey Project.

Sadly, no word about Malin

I want to thank everyone that took the time to write to me and tell me how much Malin meant to them. My inbox was overflowing with letters expressing love and concern for Malin. Everyone wanted to know if there had been any word. Mom and Dad have both been on the nest with fish and today Marsha (mum) was there around 13:00. She did not have any fish that visit. During her morning visit she called out for Malin. So far there has been no sighting of Malin.

After going through the FB postings of the Nature Center, we were able to determine that Malin was the middle hatch. The youngest just disappeared from the nest and the eldest died in the middle of June leaving Malin, the chick that hatched on 18 June, alive. Malin was then the middle hatch of 18 June. Malin then was 63 days old at fledge. The average age for ospreys to fledge in Wisconsin appears to be 55 days. That would make Malin’s timing within range. Most ospreys spend at least 2 weeks flying and letting their parents feed them. Many stay much longer. Two examples that I give are Tiny Tot and Tiny Little because they were both hatches that suffered from lack of food. Tiny Tot stayed on the nest for a total of four months or 120 days. That is more than twice as long as Malin. Tiny Little remains on the nest in Cumbria. She will probably fledge before Tiny Tot’s 120 days – but she could be on the nest for 90 days.

There is disagreement over whether Malin simply flew or whether or not Malin was frightened off the nest by an intruder. Experts on both sides see that exit differently. It is unfortunate. The result is the same – Malin has not returned to the nest. The reactions to looking for Malin are different depending on which you believe. If Malin just flew because he wanted to then no one would go and really look for him. If one believed that Malin was frightened off the nest, they might worry that he was injured and look harder. Something that has to be kept in mind is that Osprey feed their fledglings on the nest – it is preferable. They do sometimes feed on a branch but I haven’t found an Osprey expert that has ever seen an Osprey parent feed their fledgling on the ground. In fact, if a fish falls off a nest they will not go and retrieve it. Have you ever seen an Osprey eat or feed its chick on the ground?

The research continues to stress that the more food and the longer fledglings stay on the nest the higher the success rate. That is the reality. This nest is really empty. Malin defied the odds – he survived and thrived. We hope that the name we gave him carries him on into his life and that he is somewhere safe eating a fish.

Collins is looking down like he might be seeing Malin.

One of the last times the entire family was together on the nest. It was a real privilege to watch little Malin survive and then – thrive. Let us all continue to send this family positive energy.

19 August 2021. Malin, Marsha, and Collins.

It is about 7am in Latvia and Estonia as I write this. The Black Storklings are waking up and like all birds are a little more energetic than they are at mid-day.

The two images below are from Grafs and Grafiene’s nest near Sigulda, Latvia. At least one of the storklets has fledged. Perhaps today they will all fledge and find the feeder area with the beautiful Grafiene decoy.

It is now just after 9am in Latvia and there is only one storkling on Graf’s nest near Sigulda. This means two have fledged just like my source had indicated. The second fledge is the oldest at 7:43 am. He is 70 days old today. The youngest fledged at day 66 after hatch.

This was not the smooth flight of the youngest. The oldest hit the branch on the other side of the tree. There is concern about the condition of that wing. I will update you as soon as there is any information. Send your strong and positive wishes. I hope it looks worse than it was. How terrifying for this young bird to have that happen.

Even so, I hope that both of the storklings are at the feeder filling themselves with fish – just like we hope Malin is doing the same.

There is now only the middle hatch. Perhaps it will go today. They are 68 days old.

When I checked on Jan and Janika’s storklings in Estonia’s Jogeva County, no more fish have been delivered to the nest. It looks to me like every scrap of the old fish has been eaten – I thought that yesterday. Perhaps one really packed down in the nest is there, the one the storkling on the left is pecking at. All of the birds need food.

Hopefully all of them will fledge and find the feeder set up for them, too.

They are so beautiful with the sunlight filtering through the trees. The storks are 67 and 68 days old today. The average for fledging is 68-72 days. I wonder if Urmas will deliver some more fish?????

Do you watch the peregrine falcons, Xavier and Diamond? If you do, then you will know that part of the pair bonding ritual is Xavier presenting a prey item to Diamond. Diamond is not that particular but, she does not like Starlings. She cannot stand them. She has turned Xavier away when he had a Starling for her. They must taste terrible!

Well, today, Xavier hit the jackpot. Diamond was completely excited about her lunch – although some of you might not be. Xavier had a Superb Parrot for his beautiful Diamond. Make sure your sound is turned up.

Superb Parrots are also known as Green Leek Parrots or the Barraband’s Parakeet. These little beauties are native to southeast Australia living in the dry woodlands of New South Wales and Victoria. They were once considered vulnerable in terms of conservation and have been listed as Least Concern since 2012. Loss of habitation due to timber logging might well see this bird back as being vulnerable.

They are medium sized, growing up to a little over 15 cm or 16 inches in length. The bird in the image below is a juvenile. How do I know that? It has brown eyes while the adults have yellow-orange eyes. The adult male has a bright yellow face and throat while the female looks like the plumage that the juvenile has below. They eat fruits, berries, insects, as well as grains and nuts.

Awww. What a sweet face.

WBSE 27 and 28 continue to charm the socks off of everyone. That beautiful fluffy white down is in transition. They look a little like old terry cloth towels sleeping in their nest this morning in Sydney.

Look closely along the edge of the wing of WBSE 28 on the left. You will see the little pin feathers coming.

The pantaloons are growing too.

Just look at that sweet baby, WBSE 28, looking up at its parent. How adorable.

They are so young and yet, both of them know to pancake when there is an intruder near the nest. They hear their parents alarming and down they go. Look at the concern shown in the eye of WBSE 27 on the left. You can also see the black pin feathers coming in on both in this image better than the other one. But look – their cute little tails are growing!

You cam almost see them growing right before your very eyes.

Tiny Little still makes my heart skip a beat. Oh, what a wonderful bird you have turned out to be. You were so very tiny with that big older siblings but just look at you waiting for your breakfast to arrive.

Oh, you have that ferocious look like Mrs G. I have said that a couple of times but you do, Tiny Little. I hope you live as long as Mrs G and have lots of successful hatches. You really are quite amazing, Tiny Little.

Tomorrow is Saturday but there is no Ferris Akel tour this week. I was hoping to catch up with what is happening with Big Red and her family. It was raining yesterday but the Hornings were able to spot all four of them so we know that K1 and K3 are still with us – how grand, the 21st of August.

I am researching ‘Climate Driven Evolutionary Change’. If you know of bird arrivals or departures that are earlier than normal or later than what has been the norm, please let me know. It is much appreciated.

It is so nice to have you here with me. The rain is still falling – and that is a good thing. Please continue to send your positive wishes to Malin and all the bird families. Take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots and video clip: The Falconcam Project at Charles Sturt University and Cilla Kinross. Collins Marsh Osprey Nest, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Cam, The Eagle Club of Estonia, The Latvian Fund for Nature, and the Sea Eagles Cam, Birdlife Australia, and The Discovery Centre.

Send love and positive energy to Latvia and Estonia

I want to begin with the Black Stork nests today. For those just learning about the situation of the Black Storklings in both Latvia and Estonia, here is a very brief summary. The storklings at the nest of Grafs and Grafiene in Latvia and that of Jan and Janika in Estonia are late hatchlings. There was concern from the beginning that both parents might leave for their migration before the storklets fledged. Currently, the mothers have left and the fathers, Jan and Grafs, are the sole providers. Neither male can provide enough food for three storklings to thrive. There is also a question of the supply of the fish. In both Latvia and Estonia, feeder situations have been established with decoy female Black Storks. To date, neither male has found these feeders.

‘S’ in Latvia reports, “The good news is that it seemed that yesterday Grafs had encountered a generous feeding place on the way, not so far away. We were already a bit sad thinking that the storklets will have to spend another day with just one small noon feeding, what a celebrated surprise it was when he came back less than 4 hours later with plenty of food. Many of us bursted into happy tears:) It is good to know that he can still manage to get food elsewhere even if it is not from the feeder. And the most important thing is that he is still here caring for his young.”

aGrafs and Grafiene’s Storklings, Sigulda, Latvia 19 August 2021

At the very beginning, M. Strazds, a Latvian Black Stork specialist, warned that he felt that there was only 0.1% chance that Grafs would find the feeder because birds do not normally search for new feeding spots at the end of the nesting season. Still, as I understand it, the storklings, once they fledge, will find the feeder and it will be very good for them.

In Estonia, Jan has made only one delivery that I am aware of. The storklings have supplemented that with the fish that Urmas delivered last night. I was made aware that the storklings were playing with the fish but, it appears now that they have been eating them as the pile of fish is almost gone as I write this. I am aware that there are controversies about the effect of humans getting close to the nest because of the stress that it causes on the birds. But starving is also a major stressor. I believe that Urmas and his team know what they are doing and I hope they continue to feed these birds.

Jan and Janika’s Storklings, Jegova County, Estonia

There is one other nest with a fledgling, Pikne, the female, still being fed by a parent and that is the nest of Karl and Kaia in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. ‘S’ reports, “The feeder approach has been very successful with Karl’s nest in Karula for the sole reason that he has a transmitter and it is possible to track his usual feeding places.”

Pilkne, the last remaining storkling being fed by Karl II at the nest in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. The other two have fledged.

It has been a very difficult year for those who care for the birds and who watch the streaming cams. Osprey chicks died due to weather related issues and Cooper’s Hawk eyases got so hot on the nests in Canada, they lept off the nests to avoid literally being roasted. Many are dying as they undertake their migrations which are challenging enough without having fires and smoke enroute.

At the same time, there have been some remarkable situations. Around the world, humans have stepped in to save birds of every variety. In the interior of British Columbia, the wildlife rehabbers climbed the Osprey nests and removed the chicks taking them into care because of the extreme heat and fires. At various places around the world, Osprey chicks have been fostered and received a second lease on their life. A Canada Goose named Arnold had his digits fixed so that he could live a full life with his mate, Amelia. A very old Bald Eagle full of lead was given treatments and is now thriving and waiting for A Place for Hope to get its permit so he can be their ‘forever’ bird. Every day I read about a group of people and trying to help fix what many believe is unfixable. I hope that this is just the beginning of a change in intervention and our understanding of what works and what doesn’t. The key is not to give up.

There are, however, three miracles. I am thinking of the three Ospreys that should have died but did not – they have thrived – two of them to become dominant on their nests! Those were Tiny Tot aka Tumbles at the Achieva Osprey Nest in Florida and Tiny Little Bob aka Blue 463 on the Foulshaw Moss Nest in Cumbria. To me these are simply nothing short of a miracle.

Tiny Little Bob aka Blue 463, Foulshaw Moss Nest, 19 August 2021

The third has yet to fledge but has shown remarkable growth. I am aware that many on the chat rooms in Latvia and Estonia are concerned about feather growth. This was also a big concern for Malin on the Collins Marsh Nest in Wisconsin. Malin is our third miracle.

Malin, Collins Marsh Osprey Nest, 19 August 2021

I cannot tell you what happened to make the food deliveries on this nest turn around. All I can say is that they did and there are no more missing feathers, the tail now has 7 dark bands when 3 weeks ago there were 2 with the hint of a 3rd. It has been a remarkable recovery. At one time, there was concern that Malin might survive but not be able to fly. Those concerns have now vanished. Today, Malin has had 3 fish deliveries before 1pm and one of those was a whopper. Malin actually walked away from being fed by mom, Marsha, he was so full.

One of the major concerns for the Collins Marsh Osprey Nest is that the parents would also leave Malin on the nest and begin their migration. So far everything is going smoothly so I will just ‘knock on wood’ that it continues to be that way.

One other good news story is that the fires in Turkey are dying down or are out.

And there is more. Aran, the mate of Mrs G on the Glaslyn Valley Osprey Nest, was injured and was missing a couple of primary wing feathers,. There was a huge concern that he would not be able to fly — and consequently that he would not be able to fish or be able to migrate. Well, look at Aran’s feathers today! Yahoo. He is good to go. Tears. This is an amazing couple who lost their three chicks due to starvation when Aran was injured. The Glaslyn community kept the birds alive with a fish table until Aran was able to fly and fish.

Indeed, I do not want people to think that feeder areas or fish tables do not work. It depends on the circumstance and in the case of Aran and Mrs G as well as the Mlade Buky White Storklings, those fish tables saved the lives of those two families.

Aran at the top sitting on edge of nest! 19 August 2021.

We have a lot to be thankful for – and there is a lot of work to do to figure out how to help our precious birds – all of the wildlife. Humans stepping up to take responsibility and to “try” even if they are met with low odds and negativity should be the norm not the exception.

What can you do today to help the birds and all of the wildlife?

I want to close today with a bit of a giggle. If you watch Ospreys you understand how difficult it is for both the male and female to raise three. Actually that is true of eagles as well. Well, what about five? Now consider the fact that those five are all female. The poor dad would need a set of sound cancelling headphones!!!!!!!!!! You can hear females clear across a lake. Oh, my. The parents of these Westport, MA fledglings will certainly deserve their winter break.

Thank you for joining me on this quick update on what is happening in Latvia and Estonia. Send them all of your positive energy – and take care.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Collins Marsh Nature Centre, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, the Eagle Club of Estonia, the Latvian Fund for Nature, Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn and the anonymous reader of my blog that sent me the image of these five beautiful female Ospreys. Thank you.

Fish delivered to the Estonian storklings!

There are some very interesting developments going on in Estonia with the Black Storklings of Jan and Janika. On the 18th of June, Jan fed the storklings one time. He has not found the feeding pond, dug especially for him, with the decoy of Janika but, a Blue Heron has!

@Forum of the Jergova Black Stork Nest in Estonia

After dark, Urmas and a helper delivered a pail of fresh fish for the three storklings. You can see the pail that he is holding and all of the fish that have been poured onto the nest. Urmas was hoping to clean up the old fish with a branch but he did not because it could harm the storklings or the storklings might bite him. Everyone is doing an amazing job to make sure that these three rare Black Storklings will live and fledge! I cannot imagine another thing that Urmas and his team could possibly do for these beautiful young birds. Thank you Urmas!

@ Eagle Club of Estonia and the Form of the Black Stork Nest at Jergova

After Urmas has left, the storklings went back to sleeping. They will wake up to a fine meal.

@ Eagle Club of Estonia and Black Stork Nest Forum at Jergova

Grafs has delivered two feedings to his storklings at the Siguldas Latvian nest. They were so hungry and so glad to see him for the second feeding. We can only continue to hope that a miracle happens and Grafs finds the feeder with all of the little fish. This nest is not stable like the one in Estonia so no one can climb with a pail of fish and deliver them.

In stark contrast, Malin, the Osprey in the Collins Marsh Osprey Nest has a crop that is so big that it looks like it could pop. I have seriously lost track of all the feedings today, the size of the fish, and what might have been left from last night.

This Osprey chick has not seen so much food in its entire life! His system has adjusted to eating more fish. Originally, Malin would eat and then stop before he had a crop. Now he eats and eats as much as he can.

Marsha has flown in and is feeding an already full Malin that fish that was on the nest.

A few minutes ago, around 4:20 nest time, Malin still has his crop and Mom is looking pretty good, too. I wish there was someway to measure Malin. He looks like he is twice as big as he was at the beginning of the month with much more feather development.

By the size of the feet most people would say Malin is a little male. I know when the banders ringed Tiny Little on the Foulshaw Moss nest they could not tell if Blue 463 was a male or female. That was because of the lack of food. And that is precisely the problem with Malin – a lack of food might trick us. Malin could be a female but my ten cents worth is on a small very handsome male.

Don’t you just love how those wing feathers are crossing over the tail? This chick has been such a worry but it feels like that anxiety is all gone. Let us hope that the good feedings keep up for all three of the birds – Marsha, Collins, and little Malin. We want them healthy for their migration.

Ha, ha. My friend, S, in Hawaii just sent this picture to me – the one below. She is calling it the ‘Battle of the Bulges’. ‘My crop is bigger than your crop!’ Too funny. It is so nice to be able to relax and laugh. For so long we thought Malin was doomed but wow. I wish this kind of happiness for the Black Stork nests.

There is something troubling brewing. EC from France has posted images on FB of the fire, now four days old, burning the Massif des Maures in France. It is a huge mountain range. This is the worst fire in that area in 20 years he reports.

@ Eric Calvete
@ Eric Calvete

The fire is in the area with the red teardrop marker.

Google Maps

Here is the map showing the two main routes of the European birds. You will see on the top left that the birds from the UK normally fly over France, through Spain and across the Straits of Gibraltar and then the Sahara and Atlas Mountains. This is an extremely challenging journey. If they stay west in France, they will miss the fires currently burning at Massif des Maures. The good news is they should. The Eastern routing through Turkey and Greece still has major fires burning and is causing much difficulty. You can see how the arrows in the dark green – from The Netherlands to Latvia and Estonia converge and go through both Greece and Turkey to reach Africa.

We are told that the heat we are experiencing will now not go away. I hope that if that is the case our birds make adjustments to their schedules.

@ Open University

Some quick news from other nests:

NC0 is still feeding her fledglings at the Loch of the Lowes. LR2 snagged a really nice fish delivery from mom. So this is one female who has not started her migration.

Idris has been feeding Dyssni and Yestwyth at the Dyfi Nest in Wales today. Telyn has been seen so she has not left on her migration despite earlier reports that she might have.

All three chicks were on the Foulshaw Moss Nest. It looked like 464 had snagged the fish delivery with the other two waiting to see what happened. I have not seen Blue 35 and I do not know if she has departed or is just allowing White YW to do the feeding duties while she fattens up for migration.

Maya was caught on camera at the Rutland Manton Bay nest yesterday. Will continue to monitor her whereabouts. Both chicks, 095 and 096, are at Rutland.

There is our beautiful albeit somewhat grumpy looking Tiny Little on the right. It was nearing 7pm at the nest. Her crop looks good. Gosh she is a big bird! That look reminds me of Mrs G. So stern. That also makes me think she is a female!

It is always nice to see Tiny Little with a crop! And that is a good place to close for today. I hope everyone is keeping well. Sending off prayers and warm wishes to the nests and people in Latvia and Estonia and to the birds trying to make their way to their winter homes.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, The Scottish Wildlife Trust and the Loch of the Lowes, Collins Marsh Osprey Nest, The Eagle Club of Estonia, The Latvian Fund for Wildlife.

Things are happening in Bird World

Oh, just look who showed up on the NorthEast Florida Eagle’s nest in Jacksonville today – none other than the resident male, Samson! It was 7:23. So very nice to see you, Samson.

Samson is the son of Romeo and Juliet. Samson hatched on this very nest on 23 December 2013. Samson fledged and left the area on 22 April 2014. He was 120 days old.

At the end of the summer in 2019, in August, Samson arrived at the very nest he hatched from and began bringing in sticks. His mate, Gabrielle arrived on the nest on 12 September. In May of 2020, their two chicks, Jules and Romey, named after Samson’s parents, Romeo and Juliett, fledged. In 2021, they fledged their only hatch, Legacy.

The picture below is of Mama Gabby and baby Legacy in February 2021.

Samson has been seen at the nest earlier this month when the technicians came to do the maintenance on the streaming cam. Samson remains in the area of the nest year round while Gabby migrates to a cooler place – although, as I have often said, I don’t know where that would be this year! She will return about the middle of third week in September. It will be wonderful to see her back. Can’t wait.

Samson may be working on a nest but the Peregrine Falcon couple, Diamond and Xavier, are expecting eggs in the nest week or a week and a little bit. Their scrape box is high on a water tower, 170 steps up, on the campus of Charles Sturt University in Orange Australia.

This is Diamond on the ledge of the scrape box today.

Diamond and Xavier’s 2021 fledgling, Izzi, was the joy of everyone. As the only little falcon he was loved and spoiled by his parents. There was some concern he would not leave the scrape box before this year’s eggs are laid. This is the latest message from Cilla Kinross, the head researcher on the Falconcam Project:

“Izzi has not been in the box now for 12 days, but we think he is still around from calls. Parental behaviour continues as normal, with up to three prey a day being delivered to Diamond and preparation of the scrape. Eggs are expected soon (within a week or two). Generally, Diamond starts to spend more and more time in the scrape and her backside looks large and fluffy.”

You can watch Diamond and Xavier here:

Peregrine falcons are nothing short of amazing. Bald Eagles are big but Peregrine falcons are fast.

“Peregrine Falcon” by Jon David Nelson is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

The cere is the yellow part above the beak. Now look at the nostrils in the cere. There are small keratinous tubercules – they look like small little bumps inside the nostril. Can you see the one on the right nostril of the falcon above? Those are what help the Peregrine Falcon fly so fast. They serve as a baffle against the wind driven in so forcefully into the lungs of the falcon as they do their high speed dives. Otherwise, their lungs would burst.

“Faucon pèlerin / Peregrine Falcon / Falco peregrinus” by FRITSCHI PHOTOGRAPHY is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Most Peregrine Falcons that you will see on a streaming cam lay their eggs in a scrape box like the one of Diamond’s, above. Some make their nests on the side of cliffs like this one in Japan on the island of Hokkaido.

“Peregrine Falcon Nest” by Ken-ichi is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

Peregrine Falcons do not make their nest out of twigs. It is believed that this helps to stop the spread of disease from twig nests pests like flies and parasites.

Here is a short 8 minute video to introduce you to the speed and hunting methods of the Peregrine Falcon:

It’s a great day for Malin! We do not know Malin’s exact hatch date. There were three chicks and the youngest hatched on 18 June. Two chicks perished in the heat. So Malin is either celebrating his two month hatch today or his two month hatch and a couple of days, more or less. His first delivery came around 9am and the second was at around 10:14. Malin is really growing.

Here is Malin next to mum, Marsha, this morning. You can see that Malin’s feathers are growing in nicely. Look at the crossing of those wing feathers. Yippeeeeeee. This chick has really grown with the increase in feedings.

And look at all of the bands on those tail feathers – looks like a clean 7 – while, at the same time, there are no spaces in the wing feathers.

Oh, Malin, aren’t you beautiful?

Malin has gotten very good at self-feeding.

Malin is off to a great start on Wednesday. Terrific.

It is raining heavy in Latvia at the nest of Grafs and Grafiene. There are some concerns on the amount of energy used to keep warm by the nestlings.

This is the nearby ditch. It is 200 m long. A portion of the ditch has been closed off and fish have been placed in there along with the decoy of Grafiene. The decoy of Grafiene was painted by an active chat participant and installed by Janis Kuze, the ornithologist.

I hope you don’t mind if I correct just minor details. The beautiful decoy was painted by the active chat participant B.K. and installed by the ornithologist Jānis Ķuze.

These are the size of fish being put into the feeder for Grafs. So much effort. Now we need Grafs to find this spot for his three storklings. It is a very, very difficult time for everyone especially with the rain. If you would like to check on the Latvian Forum for progress, please go to this link:

The situation of the Black Storklings in the nest in Jegova County, Estonia appears to be better than in Latvia. Jan has come to the nest to feed the storklings 3 times today. The storklings have not almost completely depleted the fish that was brought on the 13th when they received their transmitters and bands. They appear to be healthy and doing well. It is not raining on this nest today.

The three storklings are 63 and 64 days old today. The average for fledging appears to be 71 days but then the young storklings are dependent on their parents for another two to three weeks before leaving the nest area. That only puts us at the end of the first week of September for these three to be totally independent of Jan — but, of course, those numbers are only averages. It appears there is time! We all must hope for these birds. They are very rare and very special and there has not been a lot of studies done on them.

The Forum with ongoing information on the Estonian Black Stork nest is here:

Karl II has been in to feed the one fledgling on the Black Stork Nest in the Karula National Park in Estonia. Oh, that fledgling was so happy. That was at 18:33. It is Urmas, the only chick still being fed by a parent. Kaia has left for her migration and the other two siblings appear to have left the nest area and might be travelling as well.

I know that there is much sadness and anxiety in the region for the two Black Stork nests that had late hatches. But, we must also celebrate the happiness of this nest in Estonia, that of Karl II and Kaia. Three fledglings, all healthy! We need to send the most positive wishes for Kaia and the other two siblings as they make their way through Europe trying to get to Africa. And, then, of course, for Karl II and this storklet when they begin.

I have tried to catch the number to confirm this storkling but it is nearly impossible.

The smudge is right in the way!

For those of you watching the North American migration, it kicked off Sunday, the 15th of August at Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania. The first over the ridge that day was a Broad-winged hawk. There was a strong wind that day and the count was 4 Bald Eagles, 2 Cooper’s Haws, 25 Broad-winged Hawks, and 3 American Kestrel. If you would like to check on the migration in North American on the route over the mountains with all their thermals, here is the place to go for a day to day check in:

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

It’s 17:16 in Cumbria in the UK and our second great Osprey chick survivor this year – Tiny Little Bob on the Foulshaw Moss nest – is waiting for dad, White YW, to bring her the teatime fish! Every day is a blessing to see you on the nest, Tiny Little (Blue 463).

Thank you so much for joining me today. Please send all your positive energy to our friends in Latvia and to Grafs for him to find the feeder and for the safe migration of all of the birds. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following streaming cams and forums where I grabbed my screen shots: The Forum for the Latvian Fund for Nature and the Sigulda Black Stork Nest, The Eagle Club of Estonia and the Black Stork Nest at Jergova County, The Eagle Club of Estonia and the Black Stork nest in the Karula National Park, Collins Marsh Nature Centre, Northeast Florida Bald Eagle Cam and the AEF, Cumbria Wildlife Trust and the Foulshaw Moss Osprey Nest, and Cilla Kinross and the Falconcam Project at Charles Sturt University in Australia.