Late Tuesday and Wednesday in Bird World

12-13 April 2022

We continue to shovel the walkways so that we can put down seed. Then it snows lots more and we do it again!

It is nearing 23:00 on the 12th of April. The RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police) are closing all of the major highways in the province where I live. This is unprecedented and will actually be quite helpful in keeping people safe. For at least two days we have known about the historic storm that is due to arrive in a few hours and have been told to stock up on medicines, batteries, candles, food, etc. All of the schools are closed. As for me I am sitting back and waiting and watching the MN-DNR Bald Eagle nest south of me in Minnesota to see how this system plays out with those eagles.

The nest is in a severe thunderstorm watch area. The winds were gusting earlier. I caught a few minutes of the nest as it creaked and swayed.

It is currently raining and the nest is still blowing about but not nearly as bad.

This is the nest Wednesday morning. They have gotten rain but not the snow that we are experiencing that is confusing many of the smaller birds such as the Juncos.

There have been two recent visits of Ervie’s to the Port Lincoln Osprey nest. One was 17:42 on the evening of the 12th (last night). The other was this morning, the 13th in Australia. Ervie arrived and then left and returned with a puffer.

In the image above, you can see the missing talon. Ospreys only have four talons. The image below has caused a lot of confusion. Does the nail on the right top belong to a different foot? or the one with the missing talon?

Is Ervie missing one or two talons? or is one curled under? Everyone is looking very closely at Ervie’s feet.

I wanted to do a quick check of many nests this morning so we can see how they are doing.

The rain from yesterday seems to have stopped. Both Big and Middle Little at the Dale Hollow nest are dry and there are large pieces of fish on the nest. Little Middle had a nice feed earlier, too. So all is well with those two!

This nest has settled down.

This is the Llyn Clywedog Nest of Dylan and Seren. It is gorgeous. Dylan is notorious for bringing back trout to the nest! Sadly, yesterday, a goshawk came and sat on this nest. Goshawks tend to like to lure the Ospreys into the forest where they attack. Fingers crossed that it will not return!

Aran and Mrs G together on the perch first thing on the morning of 13 April. Aran at the back and Mrs G with her really dark face at the front.

Handsome Aran with his fish on the perch at Glaslyn later in the day. Did he bring it for Mrs G? where is she?

Idris and Telyn on the perches at the Dyfi Nest. All is well.

Blue NC0 laid her first egg on April 12 at 18:35. What a beautiful nest at the Loch of the Lowes – so soft and comfy – and personally, one of the most gorgeous sites in all of the Osprey breeding areas.

Laddie LM15 comes to take his turn helping his mate Blue NC0.

CJ7 has been bringing nesting materials into the alternate nest at Poole Harbour. Blue 022 has been seen sky dancing all over the place. I hope he stays at Poole Harbour!

All is well at Rutland Water. Maya is incubating three eggs. Fantastic.

If you are following the UK arrivals, here is a good chart for you.

Thank you to Friends of Loch Arkaig FB Page for posting his chart.

Moving back to North America, the three osplets at the U of Florida at Gainesville continue to do well. Little Bob is still with us! And that is a good day.

Strong winds took out the camera at the West End nest of Thunder and Akecheta on the 12th.

Calmer winds are forecast for the Channel Islands today. That is fantastic. Looks like the view is pretty good from Two Harbours already. That wee one of Chase and Cholyn’s looks so tiny in that huge nest!

Andy has delivered fish. Little (or Mini) is calling for fish in the image below while Big flaps its wings.

Gosh, those chicks of Andy and Lena’s are sure beautiful. They will surely pop the corks when these two fledge! It has been a good year for Captiva Ospreys.

Mr President and Lotus’s chick has a nice big crop this morning. That little fuzzy teddy bear of a shape has sure changed over the past week! No signs of bad weather at the National Arboretum Nest in DC.

It is a little wet and windy in Iowa at the Decorah North nest. I wonder if they are going to get any of the system that is impacting us?

This is an image of Majestic, the Ambassador Bald Eagle for Wildlife Haven, our local rehabber. She has been part of a fund raising campaign because of the Avian Flu. She has been moved indoors where she will be safe. Everyone loves Majestic!

The Manitoba Wildlife Federation is sponsoring a virtual talk/discussion on what is being done about Avian Flu in our province on 19 April at 7pm. Here is the link to sign up. It is free. Since it is virtual and if you are wanting to learn more about Avian Flu, why not sign up?!

Hancock Wildlife in British Columbia is having a GoFundMe drive for nests for Bald Eagles. David Hancock is ‘the eagle man’ in Canada. Most of you probably know him. He reminded me today that when he was sixteen years old and living at Blaine Harbour, you would see white buckets on the fishing boats with eagle legs. Yes, the legs cut off. They would be shipped to Alaska for $2 a pair. That was 1954. Sadly, David says that the same attitude of neglect towards the Bald Eagles continues.

Thank you for joining me today. We are busy trying to take care of the birds that come to our garden as best we can. The squirrels are tucked up warm and no where in sight. Take care everyone!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, MN-DNR, DHEC, CarnyxWild, Brywd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Dyfi, Scottish Wildlife, Poole Harbour, Rutland Water, UFL Ospreys, Explore.org, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, NADC-AEF, and Wildlife Haven.

Tuesday Nest Hopping

Well, dear Tiny Tot did return to the Achieva Credit Union Osprey Nest this morning. Made me feel all joyful! He was on the perch and a bird buzzed him at 12:09:58. A full seconds later Tiny Tot leaves the perch. Was he in hot pursuit? Or was he just fed up being annoyed? The adult intruder had been on the nest earlier, too, when Tiny Tot was not there but it seems to be the Mockingbird that was a nuisance. Small birds love to annoy Big Birds. And how much longer will Tiny come to the nest? I wonder.

That adult intruder comes in every so often just to check things out. When Tiny arrives, it leaves! Tiny has made an impression – don’t mess with Tiny! Good.

Here comes Tiny heading for the perch at 11:07:27! You don’t see the adult Osprey – it took off the minute it saw Tiny arriving. Jack really does need to agree on a hefty amount of fish for this little one for securing the family nest all the time. :)))))

Oh, it is so nice to see you, Tiny Tot.

Tiny Tot is on the perch. If you look to the right and slightly up you will see the nuisance bird flying away from the nest.

Tiny flew off at 12:10:28 to the left.

Across the continent, Rosie is on the Whirley Crane nest in Richmond, California, with the trio. The chicks were banded on 4 June.

Isn’t that just a gorgeous location for a nest? Richmond is a great provider. This is their fifth season as parents. Rosie will stay around til the trio are well and truly fledged and independent then she will migrate. Richmond does not leave the area in the winter so he will be there helping the fledglings if necessary until they leave the territory.

Those white storks in Mlady Buky are really growing. Just miss a day and they look all grown up! And look how clean and dry they are. This is one of the best feel good stories of this year – it really is. I would love to wake up every morning and be surrounded by people who care about all living things.

Look carefully. You can see the throat pouch in the image below. Remember storks make a lot of sounds but they do not have vocal chords like songbirds. Instead, they clatter their bill together very, very fast and the noise resonates in this throat pouch making it much louder – like an amplifier.

Looking at how quickly these three are growing made me realize that I also need to check on Karl II and Kaia’s three storklings. They are the Black Storks in a nest in Southern Estonia.

Here is Kaia looking down at the three of them. Oh, I am so hoping that enough food arrives on this nest so that the little third hatch will survive. Kaia is a new mother and Karl II’s old mate, Kita, laid 5-7 eggs and they could not feed them all. Kita was known for tossing one or two of the small ones off the side of the nest. It is understandable when there is a food shortage but it looks like Karl II might have this under control and if Kaia only lays three eggs then they might fledge all their storklings without hardship.

Karl II and Kaia take turns feeding and watching the storklings. That is Kaia above. She has no bands on her legs – makes her easy to recognize. Those long legs help her wade through the long grasses and water in search of food.

Here comes Karl II. See his band. Kaia moves off the nest for her break to eat and forage for food for the storklings. So everything is just fine on this nest also. So far the day has been good for the birds I have checked on.

Taking turns.

In Wales, the camera operator gave everyone a good tour of the landscape that is the territory around the nest of Aran and Mrs G. For those of you unfamiliar, Mrs G is the oldest Osprey in the United Kingdom. She is 21. Her and Aran lost all three of their 2021 hatches due to Aran being injured while protecting the nest. He lost some primary feathers and could not fish. The community provided a fish table. Everyone ate but the wee ones not having food for 48 hours meant they could not be saved. Aran and Mrs G are getting their strength back and Aran is now flying much better. They are a strong established couple and will return next year from their African migration to try again.

Isn’t this just the most idyllic setting? There is a beautiful pond, an old stone fence along with cows and sheep. You can almost ‘hear’ the landscape!

All the rain made the Welsh countryside emerald green.

Now look carefully. Can you spot the Osprey?

Gorgeous landscape around the Glaslyn Osprey Nest.

The Two Bobs at the Rutland Manton Nest look almost as big as Maya and Blue 33 (11). Looks like it is time for some fish!

Blue 33 brings in a nice fish for Maya and the lads.

Now this image is really making me happy. The other day Idris got one of those mesh bags that holds produce – like oranges – caught on either his talons or a fish. It got into the nest with Telyn and the two Bobs. Thankfully no one was injured. The staff were watching it closely and if necessary, they would remove it. Otherwise they were going to wait to remove the mesh when the Bobs are banded at the end of the month.

Here is an image of the Two Bobs and the mesh the other day. You can imagine how worrying this was for everyone. You can also see the flat crops of each of the osplets, the down off their heads and the feathers growing in, and their deep amber eyes. They are in the reptile phase and for some, this is not so attractive as when they have either their natal down or their juvenile feathers. They really do remind us that Ospreys were around 50 million years ago – and as my son tells me – scientists only figured out that dinosaurs had feathers a few years ago so are they birds? or dinosaurs?

Another way that humans endanger wildlife is not disposing properly of our rubbish.

And this is today. Oh, what a relief. I hope someone finds that mesh and disposes of it properly.

Mesh is gone fron the Dyfi nest! Yeah.

Wattsworth has brought in a really nice fish to Electra on the Cowlicks PUD Osprey Nest in Washington State. I sure hope she takes the time to feed each oproperly. There was an awful lot of aggression on this nest yesterday and I am going to put it flatly on Electra for the lack of feeding when she had fish in hand on Sunday.

Wattsworth delivers a big fish – now feed your babies til they are bursting Electra!

And speaking of little bobs – oh, my. The third hatch at Foulshaw Moss of White YW and Blue 35 is really a wee lad. Everything is fine as long as food is not around but there is also a lot of aggression and it seems that there needs to be more fish delivered. Come on White YW!

Bob Three is really so tiny. He is cuddled up with sibling 2 having a nap. Of course sibling 1 is so big that it wants all the food but – Bob 3 is still here with us today and that is a good day in my books.

Wee little hatch 2 at Foulshaw Moss Nest in Cumbria.

The only child of Dylan and Seren is just in fish heaven. Growing up with no competition, s/he will need the parents to help it understand how to survive in the wild – the fight for the fish! I wonder if they will do that?? Certainly Bald Eagles train their only eaglets by pretending to be surrogate siblings. Samson did a wonderful job with Legacy on the Northeast Florida nest in Jacksonville.

All that chartreuse is moss. The first time I looked I thought it was another mesh bag. Is it just me or does this nest need some tidying?

And my last check in, the two Bobs up at Loch of the Lowes with Laddie LM12 and Blue NC0. Gosh. They are looking good, too.

It is so nice to stop in and find that everyone seems to be doing alright on a Tuesday. No telling what Wednesday will bring but for now, these birds are surviving.

I want to thank ‘S’ for writing to me and telling me that Tiny Tot had returned to the nest. It is much appreciated as are all your letters. Tomorrow I am going to explain something I learned today – the difference between the Migratory Birds Treaty of 1917-18 and the Wildlife Protection Acts of each individual province including my own.

Thank you for joining me. Smile. It is a great day.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen shots: Mlady Buky, Eagle Club of Estonia, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Loch of the Lowes, Dyfi Osprey Project, LRWT and Rutland Water, Clywedog Osprey Project, Carnyx Wild, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, Achieva Credit Union, Bwyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife Trust, Cowlitz PUD, and Golden Gate Audubon.

As the Nest Turns – Monday late edition

My regular readers will know and might be scratching their heads about all the Osprey posts. Like 400,000 others, I rejoiced when Louis helped Aila feed the three chicks on the Loch Arkaig Osprey Nest. It renewed my faith in Ospreys after having had a rough season with a couple of other nests. Mary Cheadle posted this image taken from the streaming cam last year of Louis helping with the three little ones. That is JJ7 Captain being fed alone so he is not bothered by the two older and bigger siblings. I mean how brilliant is that! It was 3 June 2020. What a beautiful family photo. They all fledged. Sadly, Aila did not return from her winter migration this year. Louis has a new mate off camera on another nest. I hope he is helping with the little ones too. This family gave me hope – hope that not every third chick died of siblicide. And then there was Port Lincoln and Tiny Tot – but Tiny Tot’s survival has really moved me. So, I haven’t stopped my love for Ospreys – it has grown!

Osprey dads vary in their dedication and care of their family just like human dads. Some help with incubation and feeding the wee ones while others bring in lots of fish and do territorial protection. And then there are some who don’t have another nest but still do not bring in any fish and their children starve to death. Then there are the moonlighters like Louis in Missoula, Montana who has two nests but he only takes care of one. A reader asked me if I had heard of or watched the Cowlitz Nest in Washington State. I don’t. I know about it. It is the nest of Electra and Wadsworth. At present there are two chicks. Wadsworth helped incubate the eggs and everyone thought he might have changed his ways but no fish deliveries til this morning – when people feared the little ones would die. After Tiny Tot and then Glaslyn, I am afraid that I do not need the drama. I hope that Wadsworth continues to provide for his family – that is HIS job. Electra’s is to keep the chicks warm and dry and to feed them.

We now know that Ospreys in need will accept fish that they did not catch. The laws in Europe and the UK permit feeding tables. In 2012, Rutland provided one for one of their nests. I heard of an instance in Canada but it is not clear to me what the circumstances were or even when the event took place. I understand the Ospreys did not accept the fish. Mrs G and Aran readily accepted the fish from the staff and volunteers at Glaslyn. They are alive today because of the insights and generosity of these fine caring people. So what about the situation with Electra? On the surface it appears that intervention cannot take place unless the situation has been caused by humans – according to US wildlife laws written more than 50 years ago. But that cannot strictly be the case. This February E17 and E18 were removed from their natal nest by CROW, a wildlife rehabilitation clinic in Fort Myers, Florida, because the eaglets had conjunctivitis. This is an inflammation or infection of the transparent membrane (conjunctiva) that lines your eyelid and covers the white part of your eyeball. Humans tend to call it pink eye. The eaglets remained in the care of CROW for five days. To the people that had the backbone to get the care those eaglets needed – bravo! Just how they got around that archaic law of non-interference is unknown to me but they did and I am glad. I put out a call to help Legacy if, in fact, the bout of Avian Pox she had worsened. Thankfully, it was not necessary. But I sure did ruffle a lot of feathers – and they weren’t on birds! At this point in the history of the planet, the unseasonal weather, the lack of prey, the loss of habitat and the resulting woes of the wildlife rests right on the shoulders of us, humans. But if the community were to get permission to supplement the feeding of Electra and her chicks, I would highly recommend that they contact the Glaslyn Center in Wales. It is the fine details that matter. You don’t want Electra to bolt and not return! Still, I hope that Wadsworth shapes up and takes responsibility for his family.

This morning the intruder was back on the Achieva Osprey Nest. Today, it successfully got Tiny Tot off the nest. Jack flew in and dispensed with the intruder and stayed doing guard duty on the perch pole til late in the afternoon.

At 3:58:58 Tiny Tot returned to the nest very hungry! Here is his approach and landing – gosh he is a good pilot!

Here comes Tiny lining up with the runway.

Landing gear down.

Wing tips going down. Perfect.

Now that he is safely home and there is no intruder, Tiny Tot is rather impatient and would really like some lunch!

Looks like sibling 2 has a similar idea. Oh, dear.

Tiny Tot isn’t the only one waiting for dinner rather impatiently. Big and Little from Duke Farms have been sitting on the nest or the branches around the nest hoping for a food drop. You might recall that the pair of them fludged and the parents were able, after a few days, to get them back to the nest. The parents come with prey but sometimes the youngsters timing is wrong. Big got the last drop. Little has to be really hungry. The amount of time they are hanging around the nest tells me two things. The parents are not doing prey drops elsewhere and the juveniles haven’t had much luck hunting on their own. Fingers crossed for them today.

The storks that are being fed by the villagers of Mlade Buky in Czechoslavkia are really growing. Here is their delivery of little fish today.

And here is them with their dad a little later. What a wonderful caring community. It looks like these three are going to survive thanks to their help. Let us hope the storks bless this village!

The kindness of the Glaslyn community is helping Mrs G and Aran gather their strength. They continue to provide fish for the pair and will do us until such time Aran is healed and can fish.

Laddie has joined NC0 on the nest. NC0 has just had a bath and her hair has that wind swept pandemic look! Laddie looks at her adoringly! Meanwhile Little Bob is thinking it is time for some fish. Laddie is thinking intruders! He will stay on the nest for awhile helping keep NC0 and the two Bobs safe.

When it is all quiet Laddie brings in a nice fish. Little Bob eats his fill and doesn’t want anymore. NC0 offers to both of them several times before tucking in herself.

There were several other feedings throughout the day. This is the last one as the sun is setting. Take a glimpse of Little Bob. He is beginning to get that reptilian look.

Big Red and the Ks are definitely enjoying the sun. Look at those feathers coming in and it looks like Arthur made another squirrel delivery!

Soon these Ks are going to be running up and down that ledge jumping and flapping and causing everyone to have a small heart attack.

Mom is back on the barge at Port Lincoln and Solly with her satellite tracker is north of Eba Anchorage, past Kiffin Island and Perlubie. Gosh, it is sure good to know that she is alive and surviving. She is 284 days old today. Thanks for the satellite tracking!

It is a beautiful day in Canada. Happy Memorial Day to my friends in the US and Happy Bank Holiday to those in the UK. Thank you for joining me.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I get my screen shots: Achieva Credit Union, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Duke Farms, Mlade Buky Streaming Cam, Scottish Woodland Trust and Loch of the Lowes, Scottish Wildlife Trust and People Postcode Lottery, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, and the Port Lincoln Osprey FB Page for the information on Solly.

Last chick at Glaslyn dies

After the death of the middle chick last night, Mrs G kept the wee one warm even though it could barely hold up its head. It died late this afternoon. There has been much speculation as to what happened on this nest but nothing will be known for sure without a post mortem. Did the chicks get a pneumonia from all the rain and the damp cold nest? was it some other avian disease associated with rain and cold? I saw some chatter on another nest’s streaming cam speculate that it was starvation. I cannot even imagine that anyone would say that. The quantity of the food brought to this nest is not an issue. They were fed well. Was it a matter that the chicks had no food for several days that caused this? We do not know if that interruption caused damage to their systems. The Ospreys have been eating and the little ones were eating well. Mrs G tried to feed the little one at 8:20 am this morning but it was just too weak. Another person mentioned the deadly bird flu that is currently in northern Europe. That was the virus, the deadly HPAI of the subtype H5N1. The chicks would have, like others, caught the HPAI by eating an infected wild bird. Dr Thijs Kuiken of Erasmus University is a Virologist who deals with deadly pathogens in birds. I have written to ask him but I suspect that he would say nothing is sure without a post-morten. I believe he might also say that the Ospreys at Glaslyn have only eaten fish and could not possibly have the deadly H5N1. I will let you know when I hear from him.

Mrs G understands that all of her chicks are now deceased. She stood over them for a very long time in the same way we have seen the Bald Eagles at the Captiva Nest and the White-tailed Eagle Nests in Latvia and Estonia when eaglets pass. She was disturbed in her mourning by the crows who were finally driven away by Aran.

Mrs G looks down at her chicks many times. What does she understand about their death that we might not?

In her 21 years, she has lost few chicks. So this is a great sadness for this well established and respected – iconic – Osprey family.

Mrs G flies to the perch where she can still protect her babies and the fish on the nest from the crows if it is necessary while she eats.

Mrs G was ravenous. She has laid eggs depleting her calcium, she has incubated the eggs, and brooded her chicks during the most dire weather. Force 11 winds and steady rain came right when they were hatching. To add to that, Aran, her mate was injured by intruders and could not fish.

The volunteers and staff at Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife set up a fish table for the Ospreys. They placed large quantities fish there from dusk to dawn so that Aran and Mrs G could take them to the nest and so that the Crows would not get the fish (they would be sleeping).

More fish are brought to the nest after Mrs G finishes eating.

Mrs G is not ready to say goodbye to her three babies yet and she is brooding them another night.

Mrs G and Aran will be back to the nest next year. Aran needs to mourn and to heal and grow in his flight feathers and Mrs G needs to mourn and restore her health. It is a very sad occasion indeed but it is hoped that both of the adults will recover fully.

Thank you for joining me on this quick posting. I appreciate the streaming cam set up by the Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife Center. It is where I obtained my screen shots.

Kind and Generous People helping the birds

I went to sleep Monday night, 24 May, afraid to wake up for fear that the two remaining chicks on the Glaslyn Osprey Nest of Mrs G and Aran would have perished. Tuesday morning there was still no news. But no news is good news, right? Late Tuesday there was an announcement. The staff and volunteers at the Glaslyn Wildlife Centre had sought advice from Dr Tim Mackirill and had set up a fish table (see blog, The Miracle at Glaslyn). They provide fish for Mrs G, Aran, and the two chicks from dusk to dawn because that is when the crows are sleeping. Otherwise, the crows would take the food for the Osprey family.

It is a huge effort and it has paid off -Aran and Mrs G are regaining their strength and the two Bobs (2 and 3) are alive. Indeed, they are doing very well. The Osprey adults have no problem taking the fish from the feeding table. This is really important. I am hopeful that when the urgency has passed that the staff will give details so that other communities can use their methods if it is ever needed.

Here is a quick video capturing one of the feedings on Tuesday:

If you are a regular reader of my blog, you will know that I am a promoter of feeding tables in situations like this. Feeding tables work if they are done correctly. The fish that is being provided while Aran’s right wing heals will save all four members of this Osprey family. I also get very upset when people shy away from the work involved in helping non-humans when we have the ability to do so. “Oh, we can’t intervene. They are wild animals.” Yes, of course, but we have already intervened in their lives. We have robbed them of their habitat, we have poisoned the rivers and oceans where they get their fish, we have changed the climate – the list is long. And because humans cut down the beautiful old growth forests, we have also had to provide platforms so they can nest. Cheers and tears for the efforts coming out of Glaslyn.

No more than I had posted my blog on the miracle happening at Glaslyn, than my friend ‘T’ from Strasbourg reached out to me to tell me about a village taking care of a family of storks. The mother was electrocuted when she stepped on the power lines providing electricity to the homes. The villagers felt responsible and so, the community of Mlade Buky took on the task of providing food for the father and the chicks. Are they called storklets? Mlade Buky is in Czechoslovakia. It is east of the Great Mountains and is home to several ski resorts. 2300 souls live there.

The villagers donate 4-6 cm fish, hamsters, squirrels – whatever food the storks will eat. The chicks and the dad are fed three times a day. Fresh straw is also provided to keep the little ones dry. It is spring and rain is frequent. The father is not able to fish for his youngsters as he now has to protect and brood them. You will see him flying over the rooftops as fish is put on the nest. Please take the time to watch the storks being fed. It will warm your heart.

I sat and reflected on these two examples – Glaslyn and Mlade Buky. Each is different. Glaslyn supplies a fish table where the adults retrieve the food and take it to the nest. I do not know the specifics. Are the food alive? are they inside some kind of tank? etc. In Mlade Buky, the donated food is placed directly on the nest by climbing up to it. What if the species is not an Osprey (used to living around humans more) or a stork? What if it were a Golden Eagle? Is intervention different by species? I would like to find out because I began immediately to remember the situation with Spilve and her son, Klints. Klints was near to fledging in 2020 from the Golden Eagle Nest in Spilve, Latvia. Spilve was a single parent like the male stork in Mlade Buky. Her mate had not returned and it was impossible for her to protect Klints and travel the distance necessary to get large prey. Klints starved to death on the nest. I have read academic papers about the removal of older chicks who can self-feed to allow the younger to thrive. Could Klints have been removed to a wildlife rehabilitation centre and given prey til such time he would fledge? Do wildlife laws in Latvia prevent intervention?

The list of interventions to help birds on artificial platforms or nests where there are streaming cams for research or public education, or both, is limited. There must be others. As I was searching, I remembered a story of a man saving another stork family.

The couple are Klepetan and Malena and they are a bonded pair of storks from Croatia. Hunters shot and damaged Malena’s wing in 2002. She cannot fly. Her mate is Klepetan. Every year he migrates to South Africa, a distance of 14,000 km returning in the spring. He flies straight to Malena and their nest where they raise their chicks with the help of Stjepan Vokić, a former school janitor. The couple made their nest in his chimney!

Here is a lovely short video. There are others on YouTube. And if you are wondering, Klepatan returned to Malena on 14 April 2021 to start their 19th year together! Talk about a happy story!

We are fifteen or sixteen months in to the pandemic and right at this very moment the city I live in is the hotspot in North American for Covid. It is really nice to have some positive news and certainly these people helping the birds is a cause for celebration!

Thank you so much for joining me. If you happen to know of an instance when a community or wildlife group has set up a feeding table for the birds, please get in touch with me.

I will be checking in on all the nests for a late Wednesday hop through Bird World later. Stay safe. See you soon!

The credit for the feature image is: “File:Pentowo – European stork village – 25.jpg” by Jolanta Dyr is licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0

Is tragedy coming to the Glaslyn Osprey Nest?

It was after 18:00 and there were 308 persons staring at the streaming cam images coming from the Glaslyn Osprey Nest in Wales. It is the nest of Mrs G, the oldest UK Osprey, and her partner, Aran. Why was everyone staring? The weather in Wales has been dire for the past two days. Force 11 winds tore through the region along with what many called a perfect ‘Welsh rain’ – meaning that it was hard and heavy. The first casualty was the second hatch at the Dyfi Nest of Telyn and Idris. The wee one perished from suffocation, purely accidental, about eight hours after being born. Indeed, the rain was coming down so hard that these Osprey females in Wales had to really hunker down on those nests. Even then there were hardly any breaks to feed the babies if they had fish on the nest.

Tragedy may, however, be looming at the Glaslyn nest of Mrs G and Aran. The last feeding was at noon on 21 May nest time. The third chick hatched after. The seas were too rough and stirred up but today the rains stop and even the sun came out. Everyone believed that if anyone could catch a fish it could be Aran. Mrs G was calling out and calling out. The nest was also having trouble with Covids, the crows. Aran has not brought a fish to the nest and people were beginning to wonder if something dire had happened to him. It is simply unlike Aran. He is known for being a great provider. Indeed, loyal fans realize that if Aran can’t catch a fish none of the other males could either. Clearly something is not right. Even the streaming cam has been disabled as concern grows for the welfare of the twenty-one year old Mrs G and her three chicks.

So far the only known casualty of the storms has been the second hatch of Telyn at the Dyfi Nest. All we can do is hope that a miracle happens on the Glaslyn Nest. The image below are the three little ones of Mrs G and Aran who are waiting for a fish delivery.

The third hatch was at 8:05 am 22 May 2021 (nest time).

I will bring you any updates as they are available. Send all your most positive energy towards this nest – it sure worked for Tiny Tot. Maybe it can work for those three wee ones above. Thank you!

Thank you to the Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife streaming cam where I took the image of the three 2021 hatches of Mrs G and Aran.

Checking up on the state of the UK Osprey nests after the storm

The fall out from the force 11 winds and heavy rain in the UK continues to take its toll on the Osprey nests in the UK. Is the unseasonal weather a symptom of the climate changing? And how do the Ospreys cope when there is so much rain that the water is murky and the males cannot fish?

It has now been no less than 24 hours since Mrs G and the two osplets on the Glaslyn Nest had any food. The nest has been besieged by crows and Aran, the male, is protecting Mrs G and the babies.

Mrs G is screaming at Aran to get food for her and now three Bobs! It is now past 18:00 in Wales. Aran is hopefully off fishing. Mrs G cannot do anything because of the Crows. Send your warm wishes to them.

In many instances, the water has been so murky that the males cannot see to fish. Yesterday, Laddie (LM12) was only able to bring in a twiddler of a fish to the nest. Many feared that the two little ones would not survive the night. Laddie made up for it this morning by delivering a whopper to Nessie, Blue NC0 and the Two Bobs.

The third egg is due to hatch. A shell from an earlier hatch has slipped over the third egg – but that is on the small end it is believed. Most chicks begin pipping through the bigger end of the egg.

This nest is set for awhile. This is an enormous relief. Nessie is a first time mom.

Wow. I am so glad that I checked on Nessie and the Bobs at Loch of the Lowes before I closed. Bob 3 is hatching!

Laddie stayed on the nest so that Nessie could have a break and also eat some fish. You are doing a great job! Nessie has handled the weather and the Bobs just like she is an old timer at raising osplets not a first time mom.

One of the tragedies has been the death of chick 2 at the Dyfi Nest. You may recall that Telyn really had received some of the worst rain and wind. Idris brought in a fish and Telyn was feeding Bob 1 as Bob 2 was hatching. Sadly, it appears that chick 2 suffocated about eight hours after it was born. Meanwhile, E3 is set to hatch tomorrow.

The weather has calmed at Rutland and Blue 33 landed a big one for the Two Bobs this morning. Everything is fine or should I say, super fine, on that nest.

Now that the weather has calmed in Wales, Seren and Dylan at the Clywedog nest have had to content with human intruders in the nest area! Seren took a very short break while Dylan incubated the eggs. She returned in about three minutes! Hatch is coming.

I really feel for the Ospreys – the weather has been highly problematic for the past 48 hours. In Scotland, they said they felt they had returned to winter without having much of a spring, summer, or fall!

Thank you for joining me this morning. I will be keeping an eye on the Glaslyn Nest and Mrs G and Aran. I hope he brings in a whopper giving some hope for the Bob’s survival.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I get my screen shots: The Dfyi Osprey Project, Llyn Clywedog Osprey and CarnyxWild Wales, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Loch of the Lowes, LRWT, and Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife.

Rain, rain, go away! Osprey moms need to dry off.

Ospreys do not shy away from water. Indeed, they embrace it whenever they are fishing for themselves or their families. The 12,000 or so feathers helps to keep them dry. But what about all those new mothers? They not only have to keep the wee ones dry but they also have to feed them – which means that the dads have to go out and fish.

Nessie is a first time Osprey mom. You can see the rain on her feathers as it pools. She is nice and dry but her nest at Loch of the Lowes is getting quite wet and damp.

Underneath her are two wee ones. One is not even 24 hours old but both are hoping for some fish and Laddie does not disappoint. Laddie comes in to check on Nessie and to see the babies – and he brings a fish!

The rains get heavier as the day progresses and Nessie hunkers down so those two Bobs do not get wet. She might have also noticed that there is a pip in the third egg. It shows up around 16:07.

Mrs G at the Glaslyn nest has had her second hatch and she is soaked to the core. The third hatch is expected Saturday. Aran was right there by her side today bringing a fish in when there was a wee bit of a break in the downpour to feed the two Bobs.

Mrs G is a very experienced mom – the opposite of Nessie who has just hatched her first two. Mrs G has had 46 hatch and 41 fledge making these two her 47th and 48th chicks to hatch. Wow! That would really help when the weather is so dire.

Telyn and Idris had their first hatch at the Dyfi Nest in Wales and they, too, are having issues with rain. Gosh, it is sort of raining on the Canadian prairies but, we sure could use a big downpour like Mrs G is having! Telyn is having much more wind than Mrs G. Wow!

Idris comes to the nest with a really fine fish for Telyn and little Bob. I am thinking Nessie wouldn’t mind a fish that size.

Idris stays to help Telyn with the little one while she is trying to feed it. It was blowing so hard little Bob could have been blown off that nest! What a cute little osplet – so strong! This kid has great DNA.

Oh, and no one is getting a break. At the Llyn Clywedog nest of Dylan and Seren, it is blowing and blowing with heavy rain. The nest is really exposed and Seren does not look impressed. Her first egg was laid on the 16th of April. Let’s all hope her little one can wait. Someone said she is getting a proper ‘Welsh rain’. Seren might be wishing she was back in The Gambia.

The winds, heavy rain, and the choppy water that is impacting all of the Welsh and Scottish nests also hit the Manton Bay nest of Blue 33 (11) and Maya at Rutland.

The Two Bobs are doing great. Look at the wee ones on the Loch of the Lowe nest and then look here. These two are entering their reptilian phase – just look at those feathers coming in! Oh, baby dinosaurs.

It is still raining on Iris at the Hellgate Osprey nest in Missoula, Montana. It is currently 6 degrees C dropping to 2 degrees C with drizzle – 35.6 degrees F. If anyone is wondering, the eggs are almost certainly not going to hatch.

Iris returned to her nest at 13:15:10. She aerated the nest a bit and might have rolled the eggs a bit but it was not clearly evident.

Iris settled down to incubate the eggs.

At 13:49:42, Iris flew over to her perch. She incubated the eggs a total of 34 minutes and 2 seconds. At this point in time, Iris is just going through the motions. As I said earlier, I don’t think there is any osprey expert in the world that thinks any of the eggs are viable.

That said, the eggs were destroyed by the Raven last year and this year, I have not seen it about. As long as the eggs are there, I don’t mind Iris coming to the nest – we get to see her then! Otherwise we would not and seriously, seeing Iris live her life (regardless of the circumstances) is a real joy.

Iris was really floofing trying to get the water off her feathers.

At 14:20:31, she flew off the perch! Aren’t those wings amazing? This is one beautiful osprey!

It truly isn’t easy for the Ospreys. The lochs are very choppy and it is difficult to fish. Keeping the babies warm and dry plus fed is a big challenge. A friend of mine in Scotland says it is like they skipped summer and fall and it is winter again. Clearly there could be snow in Montana, too. Oh, my. Let’s hope they get some sun and can dry out.

Thank you for joining me today. I have checked on our other nests. Tiny Tot has not fledged but has eaten well. He had a bit tug of war over a fish yesterday with sibling 2. It was fantastic to watch. Tiny lost but he didn’t. He waited til #2 had eaten about half the fish and then rushed at sibling 2 and she flew off. Tiny ate that fish and two others after before lunch! Tiny isn’t Tiny anymore. Legacy had a nice big fish this morning from Samson. Big Red and Arthur are keeping the Ks full and E17 and E18 were down at the pond playing in the water with Harriet. Everyone seems fine.

Take care everyone!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I grab my screen shots: Cornell Bird Lab and the Montana Osprey Project, Llyn Clywedog Osprey Nest, Carnyx Wild Wildlife on the Web, Cyfoeth Naturiol Cymru National Resources, Dyfi Osprey Cam, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Loch of the Lowes, and LRWT.

Late Wednesday Nest Hopping in Bird World

Blue 3J, fondly called Telyn, allowed Idris to incubate the three eggs this morning for a short time. As the first hatch is close, she will more and more take sole responsibility for those duties. It wasn’t clear if Idris wanted to get up this afternoon! Some of the dads really enjoy being on the nest. For me, these two are among the power couples of the Welsh Osprey.

There is, indeed, a tiny pip in one of their eggs which was seen at 15:31. In the egg near the top you can see ‘white’ instead of the rust or cream. Hatch is coming at Dyfi!

You can watch Idris and Telyn here:

Mrs G was a little tired after the second hatch and Aran had a nice fish on the nest which she used for a pillow!

Aran is a great dad and provider. Mrs G picked a good one. I love seeing both of them on the nest with the two little ones. It reminds me of Blue 33 (11) and Maya.

Just imagine. Those two little ones in the image above will be the size of Maya and Blue 33 (11)’s babies in a week!

Here is the link to Aran and Mrs G:

Maya is still being careful with the fish that are coming in but Little Bob doesn’t care, he just wants fish! He has scrambled out of the nest cup up to mom and is whispering “Fish, please”. Maya is listening carefully.

It wasn’t long until Dad had a nice big one on the nest for all three to enjoy. Little Bob got his ‘fish wish’.

You can watch Maya and Blue 33 (11) and the Two Bobs here:

Blue NC0 or Nessie has gotten the hang of feeding. I still have to giggle. She has decided that it is best if she sticks her entire beak into the little one’s mouth to make certain it gets the food.

That little one’s down looks like it would be super soft to the touch. Nessie has done a splendid job of keeping the wee one warm and dry with all the rain they are having up at Loch of the Lowes.

I observed Laddie bringing in three fish yesterday and there could have been more. NC0 is so funny. She is not so graceful on that wet nest and when she went to get the third fish her wing batted the little one. That didn’t hamper its appetite – it was right back up saying, “Fish, please!” You can see its tiny head sticking up amidst that beautiful rust coloured moss.

While we don’t see Laddie often, he is, in fact, perched on a tree to the left of the nest keeping guard on his family.

You can watch Laddie and Nessie and their wee ones here:

Darting across the pond, there are no food insecurity worries on The Landings Osprey Nest on Skidaway Island – commonly known as the Savannah Ospreys – anymore. The eldest was a bit of a beast the first week but wow, the crops of those two were bursting this morning.

That is the youngest one closest to the front. You can tell it because of its very dark chest feathers. These two have the most gorgeous plumage I have seen – there is peach bursting out everywhere!

Notice the oldest calling for another fish! It has a very nice crop. Wonder how much room is in there??????

You can watch Scarlett and Rhett and the two osplets here:

It looks like Diane and Tiny Tot are happy to have sibling 2 off the nest and back to their routine. Diane loves feeding Tiny Tot! —— and Tiny doesn’t mind either. He is strengthening his wings and hovering a bit more but Tiny doesn’t look like he is in a hurry to leave. I don’t blame him. Nature isn’t kind and it definitely isn’t Disneyland!

Pesky older sibling showed up later in the day getting another fish from Jack. Jack, Diane and Tiny need another fish! And he heard us. He brought in a really nice flounder and guess who claimed it? Tiny Tot!!!!!!!! Yippee. That’s Tiny with its wings up making the claim. Jack is in the front and there is sibling 2 who recently had a fish sneaking up the back.

You can connect with Jack, Diane, Tiny and elder sibling (2 probably) here:

Oh, those Ks are growing like bad weeds! K1 has discovered standing and is starting to figure out walking while K3 insisted on horking the leg of the Starling they had for late lunch.

Big Red kept trying to take that leg back but K3 was not going to give it up. Big Red watches as the little one gets the hang of horking. Horking has many meanings but with hawks it is getting an item of prey down whole (or almost whole) without chewing it. Is this a bit of a badge of honour for the youngest of the three?

You can see the little leg hanging out of K3’s beak. Big Red doesn’t know what to think.

K2 looks at K3 in disbelief as the last of the foot went down!

Little K3 is quite the character. It has seen K1 ‘walking’ – early stages – and it is even giving it a go. K3 held out its wings for balance and then started spinning and landed on its fat little bottom.

Kerplunk.

Big Red gathered up two Starlings and none of the Ks seemed interested in food. She looked over, saw the top of K3s head and started preening it. Oh, that must feel good. Maybe like getting a shampoo at the Salon! But, alas, it has been so long for so many of us maybe we have forgotten how nice that felt.

Big Red is one of the most beautiful Red-tail Hawks ever. Look at her gorgeous dark plumage! And that amazing red tail.

The link to Big Red, Arthur’s and the Ks camera is here:

There is absolutely no place like home if you are a juvenile eaglet and you fludged. Today, both of the eaglets were back on the nest at Duke Farms. What a relief.

I cannot promise how long they will be there but maybe they both won’t get on the same branch together any more! Be sure to look up if you go to this streaming cam. They are often on the branches like they are in the image below.

Here is the link to this nest in Hillsborough, New Jersey:

I will close with Iris. Iris, the oldest Osprey in the world, laid her third egg at the Hellgate Nest in Missoula, Montana, at dawn this morning. It has been 9 days since she laid her second egg. Eggs are normally laid every 3 days. If you have followed me, Iris has sporadically incubated the eggs. Her hormones require her to lay them but she seems personally not interested. She knows if they are viable or not – or so the experts tell me. Iris raised many ospreys with her partner Stanley – at least, you might think, 30-40. She has done her part. She deserves to have a summer of fishing and taking care of herself. People continue to think that a new mate might appear for her but that will not happen unless something happens to Louis. And then you still have the problem of the other female, Starr, in the same territory. Iris might think we were foolish for feeling sad for her – but, we are human and we do. We want happy endings.

It is 6 degrees C in Missoula and it is raining. Snow and 1 degree C is predicted for Friday.

I have tried to ascertain how long eggs can maintain their protective coating if exposed to continual rain. How much rain is enough to ruin the eggs? Do you know? Message me.

Maybe Iris has her own message to Louis. I wonder. If she does, it is a pretty loud one this year. “I might have to lay those eggs but I don’t have to take care of them”. Do birds think like that?

Here is the link to the camera for Iris’s nest:

We are still hoping for rain on the Canadian Prairies. Fingers crossed. Today the Brown Thrasher, only one, has been in the garden thumping the ground, eating off the cranberry suet cylinder, and having a lot of bird baths. He was joined by a couple of really beautiful Purple Finches and a single male Black-capped Chickadee.

I hope you are finding some enjoyment in your garden or in the local park. Thank you so much for joining me as we check in on with our friends in Bird World.

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams where I get my screen shots: Dyfi Osprey Project, Byweyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, LRWT, Scottish Wildlife Loch of the Lowes, Cornell Bird Lab and Skidaway Audubon, Achieva Credit Union, Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, Duke Farms, Cornell Bird Lab and Montana Osprey Project.

Lots happening in Bird World and it is just Tuesday!

My goodness. Monday and moving into Tuesday in the UK turned out to be a blur. Mrs G officially had her and Aran’s first hatch at Glaslyn Osprey Nest in Wales at 00.08 18 May. Mrs G, with her great experience – this is her 47th hatch – removed half of the shell. Good work, Mom. You can see the little Osprey to the left of the white egg – that sweet little stripe down its back.

There is Aran coming to check out how Mrs G and Q1 are doing in the early morning. Mrs G told him it won’t be long til Q2 is here – there is a big crack in that egg.

Little Q1 wanting some more fish. Oh, goodness. Not even 24 hours old and look how strong!

Here is the link to watch Aran and Mrs G with what will soon be the two Qs.

NC0 had her first hatch ever! The little one just needs mom to nudge that shell a bit. It has a really loud cheep that can be heard on the microphone under the nest cup.

And here is the little one getting its first feeding! So tiny.

No one gives the Ospreys a manual and it takes time to get to know how to feed a bobble head. I remember aching every time I saw Anna feeding Kisatchie at the Bald Eagle nest in Louisiana. Now Kisatchie is ready to fledge – it all worked out. Nessie (Blue NC0) is trying hard to connect with the little one to feed it and Laddie (LM12) seems to understand he is to deliver fish. Fingers crossed. I am certain they will have the feeding all sorted quickly before number two arrives.

Here is the link if you would like to check out this nest.

White YW (male) and Blue 35 (female) celebrate the arrival of the first hatch of 2021 at the Foulshaw Moss nest in Cumbria.

There is a lot of excitement at the Poole Harbour Nest and ironically, I was just reading through Roy Dennis’s account of when they were first setting up the nests at the most opportune locations in Poole Harbour in his new book, Restoring the Wild. Sixty Years of Rewilding our skies, woods, and waterways. It is very interesting how they use Google Earth to help pick out the best places for the artificial nests.

CJ7 flew in with a fish and lo and behold, there is a male. It is Blue 022. They have been seen mating on the camera pole. Late eggs?

Another nice view of female CJ7 with her catch. Oh, the folks at Poole Harbour would be elated if there was a new pair at this nest! Blue 022 is a 2019 translocated Osprey.

The Cal Falcons need a name and the folks at UC Berkeley have narrowed down the field from 650 suggestions. If you would like to vote to name Annie and Grinnell’s vivacious boys, please go to the link below. There they provide information on the names submitted and then you just choose three. Why now join in the fun?

https://calfalcons.berkeley.edu/names/

Here is Grinnell giving the three their morning breakfast. They were fantastic for their dad, all lined up and being nice. Sometimes they run all over the place when Annie tries to feed them later in the day. Nice, healthy falcons!

You can catch the action here when they are inside:

And this is the link to the outside camera:

Oh, those babies of Big Red and Arthur’s get more adorable every day – even with their pin feathers starting to show. Glad to see Arthur snagged a chipmunk for the gang. Did you realize there is a shortage of chipmunks in 2021? It isn’t just Ithaca – across the state of New York. I also wonder about squirrels. Did Arthur wipe out the colonies of squirrels and chipmunks last year when he delivered 2x the normal amount of prey to the nest? It has to take many more Starlings – and I understand that hawks and falcons don’t particularly like Starlings. Wish for a chippie!

They are sure growing but immediately you can still tell which is K1, K2, or K3. Oh, the little wings and tails.

The little ones at The Landings Osprey Nest on Skidaway Island (Savannah Ospreys) are doing great. It is easy to tell them apart. The youngest one has a very dark breast. That one struggled for awhile but the feeding has levelled out and both are fed well and growing. This morning the youngest decided to try walking for the first time! Wow. What a milestone! These two have beautiful peach in their plumage.

Checking in on Iris, she brought in an amazing catch yesterday at 12:45 pm. She could hardly pull it into the nest and then she decided to fly off with it to the pole.

Iris already had a pretty full crop when she caught this one. She has to be the envy of everyone there on the river in Missoula.

Iris is such a beauty. I wonder if she remembers how nice it was to have Stanley for a mate? someone to share these precious moments with? to help her with the eggs and the chicks? Those are, of course, human questions but, you can’t help but notice when a chick is born how quickly the female wants to show it to the male. Iris, the oldest Osprey in the world, is much loved – by tens of thousands.

Iris is not tied to her eggs. Thank goodness. She spent the night on the perch and did not go down to the nest til 8:44 am and was gone by 9:06. She is taking care of herself this year knowing that a single parent cannot raise a family of Ospreys. It is very interesting to me. I would love to have a coffee with Iris and hear what she thinks about Louis! Can humans learn Osprey speak? Probably not. It remains a great unfortunate in the Osprey World that Louis has two nests and that he doesn’t have the energy of Monty to try and keep both thriving.

It won’t be long until Tiny Tot fledges. He is getting a lot of good height and is exercising those wings.

Tiny and Diane are waiting for a fish delivery. The pair enjoyed a late night delivery the other day from Jack and were eating well into the night. It is hot and windy in St Petersburg today, 30 degrees C. Fishing might not be that good.

Tiny has grown into a beautiful osprey. Such joy he has brought to everyone who cheered this little one being clever and wanting to live. It is one of those good news stories from 2021 for sure.

Legacy is still with us! Samson brought in two fish today for her – two at the same time! This is really amazing as there is a high rip tide warning for the coast between Jacksonville and Georgia.

Samson waits and protects Legacy while he eats.

We are so lucky to have this extra time with Legacy. He has not strayed since he was missing for three days. That must have been very scary. Samson is doing a great job feeding Legacy and keeping him on the nest.

Thank you so much for joining me today. We are once again on hatch watch at the Glaslyn nest of Aran and Mrs G. If I look at the other potential hatches in the UK, things are getting busy. It is difficult to keep up.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams. That is where I get my screen shots: Cornell Bird Lab and the Montana Osprey Project, Cornell Bird Cam RTH, Cornell Bird Lab and Skidaway Audubon, Scottish Wildlife Trust and Loch of the Lowes, UC Falcon Cam, Poole Harbour, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn Wildlife, NE Florida Bald Eagle Cam and the AEF, and the Achieva Credit Union.