The Little Eaglet fighting to live – ND17 Little Bit!

30 May 2022

The real focus on this blog is this fantastic Little Eaglet. I cannot say enough good things about him. There are a couple of other news items at the end.

If any third hatch deserves to live – and thrive in the wild – it is Little Bit 17 at the ND-LEEF Bald Eagle nest. Oh, he reminds me of Tiny Tot Tumbles from the Achieva Osprey Nest in St Petersburg in 2021. That third hatch was starved and appeared stunted. Tiny Tot Tumbles lived on old pieces of fish she could find buried in the nest until one day in April (she hatched 5 March 2021) her Mum, Diane, brought in a catfish. At some point Diane realized that this third hatch just might be remarkable. So besides being creative and doing the snatch and grab, Tiny Tot persisted and Mum fed her. For all those that doubt Little Bit 17 can grow big and strong – I have lots of examples that say you will be wrong if Little Bit survives.

This afternoon Little Bit 17 really showed the stuff he is made of – he is brave and he is hard working. He is willing to eat the prey that no one else wants to survive. He has gotten smart except that he is hungry and he will be the ‘Snatch and Grab King’ when he can.

A prey item cam on the nest at 13:21:47. I could not make out if it was the squirrel or the raccoon – both road kill so mangled and mucked up.

Little Bit 17 was up next to 15 at the top rim of the nest. A perfect place to be.

Mum comes in with something and 15 moves back to peck at it. Little Bit stays up at the rim.

Mum checks and moves her head up to the rim to feed. Little Bit moves over. He is very afraid of Middle Bob – ND16 – who pecks at him all the time.

Mom feeds for about 4 minutes and then turns around where it is not so advantageous to Little Bit.

Despite 16 reaching over to peck a bit, Little Bit did the ‘Snatch and Grab’ for awhile and got a little more food. Right now he is pretty brave as he has opened himself up to get attacked by the big siblings.

One of them takes exception to Little Bit grabbing the prey and starts to mantle and flap. Little Bit gets over.

Then Mum turns sideways and Little Bit rushes to get to the side opposite the big siblings. You can just see his tail. He got some bites this way, too. Not many but some.

I wish that Mum would just stay in one place. It would be so much easier for Little Bit to eat with the big siblings on one side and it on the other. She seems antsy.

Little Bit is now doing the ‘snatch and grab’ again.

Mum is gone. She has left a part of the squirrel on the nest. Little Bit knows it is there.

Little Bit gets it. ND15 looks down and does nothing.

Little Bit gets hold of the prey item and pulls it and pulls it. It gets stuck but he keeps on eating and pulling. The big siblings are paying no mind. They are not going to work that hard for food so they can stay alive. Little bit 17 will though.

He pulls and tugs and tugs and pulls and just keeps on eating. He is eating skin and fur and every part of the raccoon. That is going to keep him alive. At the same time he is moving back away towards the porch where he might have a little stash of food or where he can continue eating away from the two siblings.

There he is pulling and pulling.

Where in the world did Little Bit find the squirrel? Goodness! He is pulling it back into his pantry too.

By 14:40 all evidence of the two prey items are gone and Little Bit is either saving them or eating in the back area of the nest known as the porch.

At the beginning of this Little Bit’s stomach would have had a little bit of food in it from Mum. Would he have a crop? Possibly if he ate the squirrel, too. He is quite hungry but the squirrel and the piece of raccoon will help. Did I say that Little Bit is brave, tenacious, creative, hard working, and willing to eat the crap food to survive? Well, he is. Send every positive wish his way – they are all working! Tears that he had something to eat.

In other news, the contest to name DC9 at the National Arboretum nest is over. DC9’s name is Takoda which means “Friend to All”.

For followers of the Dale Hollow nest, a parent flew to the nest yesterday with food and a juvenile chased them to the nest to get it. I do not know which one. The Dale Hollow camera only caught a small portion of the action which was posted on their FB page.

@DHEC

If you are a Glacier Gardens fan, a video of the first day of the eaglet’s life has been compiled. How nice!

It is hard to believe but we will be on fledge watch for L1 at the Red-tail Hawk nest starting on Friday! The following is a list of date ranges for the chicks to fledge based on historical data compiled by Cornell:

  • L1: 2-20 June
  • L2: 5-13 June
  • L3: 6-14 June
  • L4: 9-19 June

Big Red fed them all and also greenery is starting to come to the nest. While it is good to keep away insects, it is believed that Big Red and Arthur bring the oak leaves to get the kids to picture in their mind the tree where they should fly to on their fledge or first flight.

Big Red also sits on the fledge ledge to show them the best spot in which to take their first flight.

L2 and L3 watching a parent fly around the nest.

Cutie Pie L4 with a nice big crop. Hi Little One – and those silly humans thought that you wouldn’t survive. Just look at you.

L4 would like to figure out how to unzip that Chippie but he might need some help.

The bird that is standing to the right of L4 is L2. It has a white terminal band with a dark band and then the other bands are all muddy – no clear stripes on each.

Cutie Pie is trying.

L2 is really a gorgeous bird.

L2 and L3 looking at something on the ground.

After fledging the parents will provide prey while the fledglings learn how to hunt. In the past they have moved them farther and farther away from the nest at intervals teaching them to hunt in different ways at different places.

Just relieved that Little Bit 17 had something to eat. He worked hard for every morsel. Courageous and tough. Keep him in your most positive thoughts. Cal Falcons will be posting the short list of names for a quick vote. Go to their FB page after 6pm to see the choices.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: DHEC, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, NADC-AEF, and ND-LEEF.

Early Wednesday in Bird World

25 May 2022

There is so much news that it is difficult to know where to start sometimes. But today it is going to be in Port Lincoln, Australia on the Osprey barge. Mum and Dad were sitting next to one another on the ropes. Mum then went to the nest and was looking around. She was not happy. One of the long time watchers of the barge of this Osprey family, ‘M’ suggested on the chat that Ervie had been trying to land to eat a puffer, like he has done now for nearly 5 months. The camera did not pull back so that we could have a clear view. Something was definitely making Mum quite upset and ‘A’ writes this morning and confirms that at 0952 Ervie was trying to land.

This is, indeed a sad day for all of us that loved Ervie and wished beyond anything that the parents might let him come to the barge. Maybe he will go to the old barge with his puffers – the alternative for Mum and Dad. (Is it still there?)

Mum was still preening at 11:10 on the nest.

The feeding of five little storks! They have grown so much in a week!

While those White Storks have been growing, Betty and Bukachek at the Mlade Buky nest in The Czech Republic are welcoming their newly hatched storklets. Congratulations!

At the black stork nest of Jan and Jannika in Estonia, frogs and fish were brought in to feed all of the storklets. If you have never seen storklets fed, this is a great way to start watching. The parents regurgitate the fish for the little ones.

There is a very confusing situation at the Latvian Black stork nest of Grafs and Grafiene. The ‘real’ Grafiene returned late and now there are three on the nest with mating and fighting.

The second eaglet on the Fort St Vrain Bald Eagle nest in Colorado, US is sleeping quietly. The eaglet is 6 weeks old and I am so hoping that there is a parent near by. Last night a raccoon climbed and pulled an eaglet off the nest to feed it and possibly its babies. I hope this eaglet stays safe!

Before night, Little Bit 17 was flapping its wings on the ND-LEEF nest. They are getting bigger and he is getting stronger with every bite of fish that he eats.

A fish arrived on the ND-LEEF nest at 0820. Little Bit 17 began moving up to eat and was at Mum’s beat at 08:21:37 where he got fed. Yes! That is a very good way to start a Wednesday morning.

It got a bit wet on the nest this morning and Mum is there with the eaglets.

Lady and Dad are busy working on the nest first thing in the morning. Dad has been bringing fish to the nest every day for Lady. Lovely.

‘S’ was kind enough to forward a statement from the Scottish Wildlife Trust on the issue relating to Laddie, LM12’s eye. They said, “

Our breeding pair, LM12 and NC0 have made an incredible effort to provide for their growing offspring since the first chick hatched on 19 May.

If you’ve been watching the webcam you might well have noticed that resident male LM12 has an injury on his right eye – this may have been caused by an abrasion sustained when his protective, translucent, third eyelid, also known as a nictitating membrane, was open.

Fortunately this injury seems to minor and it doesn’t seem to have affected his ability to fish. LM12 brought two perch to his hungry family at 20:05 and 21:20 this evening.”

Laddie’s eye appears to be perfect. He has brought in a big fish for Blue NC0 to feed the babies!

The two osplets of Dylan and Seren at Llyn Clywedog are almost the same size. They are terribly cute. It is pitching down rain there today and the third Bob has hatched. Congratulations Dylan and Seren.

Both eggs have hatched at the nest of White YW and Blue 35 at Foulshaw Moss in Cumbria. Congratulations!

Congratulations to Idris and Telyn on the hatch of their first chick of the 2022 season at 1628 on the 25th of May! It is Tiffin Cake all around in Wales today I am told.

Both of the osprey chicks on the UFlorida-Gainesville nest were fed by Mum this morning. They were both full with Mum betting a chance to eat the tail at 1105. Later images show them with a nice crop each.

Look at the size of Middle’s beautiful wings!

The only surviving osplet on the Dahlgren Nest in Virginia US used to be the size of the Bobs at the Loch of the Lowes and Llyn Clywedog. Just look at how big that chick is today!

It was heart warming to learn that the Friends of Big Bear had so many letters of support to stop the development in Big Bear Valley. Jackie and Shadow are much loved. In terms of social media stars, they have the highest number of visitors to their streaming cam than any other Bald Eagle nest. This is fantastic news.

The day that Spirit flies off the nest is coming. It could even be today. She has been on the branch flapping her big beautiful wings and standing on one leg this morning.

Was Spirit getting some advice for the future?

DC9 has been sitting on the rim of the nest looking out at the world from the National Arboretum nest in Washington DC. Mr President is doing a great job taking care of his only eaglet this year. Mum Lotus has not been seen for several days now.

The triplets at Pittsburgh-Hayes are starting to get out on the branches!

The oldest US Steel Eaglet is 50 days old today while the youngest is 47 days.

Liberty and Guardian have been making regular prey deliveries to Star and Sentry throughout the day. Some viewers have worried. There is a chat associated with the nest and the moderator will list the times of prey deliveries and visits from parents. The two eaglets are so large they take up the entire nest!

The eyases at the Manchester New Hampshire scrape continue to loose more of their fluffy down revealing their beautiful feathers.

The San Jose City Hall falcons are so cute. They are starting to lose their fluff revealing some nice feathers, too. Such cuties sitting there like little Buddhas. They are 20 days old today.

Here is a short video of Pedro meeting those chicks. Look at how much they have grown.

Talk about losing baby down! The two Red-tail Hawks at the Presidio Trust nest in San Francisco sure look a lot different this morning. I have not checked on them for awhile and they are big hawks!!!!!

It is a crazy time in Bird World. So many nests and everything happening from mating to fledging – with lots of intruders! Let us hope that all of our feathered friends have uneventful days. One of our readers asked about the Berry College eaglet. B15 fledged – if my memory holds true – on the 28th of April. She was still visiting the nest to everyone’s delight at 110 days old. Good solid eaglet. Pa and Missy continued to provide food for her.

Gorgeous picture that someone sent me of Pa Berry and Missy. (Do not know who to credit). They are a beautiful couple and did a fantastic job this year with B15.

This has been a long blog today. Please pardon any crazy typos or wording – I tried to cover too many nests! I will do a short check in on some of the nests with recent hatches later today. Take care everyone. Thank you for joining me.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Berry College Eagles, Presidio Trust, San Jose City Hall, Peregrine Networks, Redding Eagles, Pix Cams, NADC-AEF, FOBBV, Dahlgren Ospreys, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Dyfi Ospreys, Cumbrian Wildlife Trust, CarynXWild, Loch of the Lowes and Scottish Wildlife Trust, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, ND-LEEF, XCel Energy, Mlade Buky Storks, and Port Lincoln Osprey Project.