Saturday in Bird World

7 May 2022

It is a gorgeous spring or summer day – feels like summer – at 19 degrees C. The Black-capped Chickadee is serenading everyone in the garden after having a bath and the White-throated Sparrows have arrived in large numbers. All are digging and scratching around the wet leaves for insects. That is one of the best reasons not to rake your lawn in the fall and not until the end of May. Not lazy. Helping the birds!

All of the images were taken through a window screen. The birds seem to like to be in a dark area of the garden where there is a lot of dead leaves and a puddle of water from the snow melting.

There are so many White-throated Sparrows in the garden today. They are all enjoying the dark wet areas, having a drink in the remaining puddles, and stomping on the ground for insects. You might think that this is a White-crowned Sparrow like the one below but look at the lovely yellow over each eye.

This is a White-crowned Sparrow. Do you know it? This little guy arrived in the garden just today. The White-crowned Sparrow is a very distinctive bird. Its black and white striped head is the first thing you will notice. Then its grey breast with its brownish and grey patterned wings and back. This little one was digging around through all of the vegetation. Notice the beak. It can be either an orange-yellow or a reddish-brown depending on the subspecies of the bird. This bird, like the one above, is passing through heading to the boreal forests north of me.

The Black-capped Chickadee, who is a regular in our garden throughout the year, really wanted time in the puddle for a quick bath!

It was nice to see Mr and Mrs Purple Finch in the square feeder today. Just lovely.

There are a few European Starlings that still come for the hard suet.

It is so nice when the migrating birds are coming through the garden heading to their summer homes. The songs and their presence are very re-assuring.

If you need a smile, Annie feeding the two chicks in the scrape on The Campanile at UC-Berkeley should do it!

As of 1300 Pacific time, there were still only two chicks hatched for Annie, Alden, and Grinnell.

oh, they are just so perfect with their little pink beaks and feet. Annie and Alden work together like mates that have been together for a long time. Alden keeps the pantry full. You will see Annie go down to the larder on a lower level and come up with something for the wee ones.

Cal Falcons just posted a video of Alden keeping an eye on the chicks while Annie is away. He is a little nervous. Many believe that this is his first time ‘dad’ stuff. He will be a great mate for Annie and dad for the eyases.

It is a pretty nice day when nothing much is going on in Bird World. It is like this sort of lull – some eggs to pip soon, a few eaglets to fledge, but steady. That is a good thing.

It was so nice to drop in and see Kincaid on her branch at the Kistachie National Forest Bald eagle nest in Louisiana. She is going to survive and do really well. Right now all she wants is to see her dad, Louis, flying in with a fish for her.

I wish I could put Kincaid side by side with the MN-DNR female. My goodness. They said she weighed 9 lbs. Eaglets normally grow at the rate of a lb a week. The MN-DNR eaglet is six and a half weeks old. She is 50% more heavy and larger than normal! Formidable is the word. She is at the high end of the large female eaglets. Those legs are strong and she has her wings folded in part way. Awesome.

Cholyn’s only baby, TH1 of 2022, has quite the crop this afternoon. Wonder if she is a big female, too? Cholyn needs to eat that remaining fish!!

Star and Sentry are really looking good at the Redding nest of Liberty and Guardian. Look at their plumage development in comparison to Two Harbours 1 above.

The triplets at the Pittsburgh-Hayes nest were soaked this morning but by afternoon late they were dried out and sound asleep.

There is an afternoon storm with rain, high winds, and what sounds like thunder at the National Arboretum nest of Mr President, Lotus, and DC9.

It is reassuring at a time when the Avian Flu is killing so many Apex raptors to stop into the nests and see that the birds and their parents are doing alright. Here are some images from the nest of Samson and Gabby at NEFlorida. Both Jasper and Rocket have fledged and, like Kincaid, they are hanging around the nest to get those wings strong and their hunting skills perfected before heading out on their own.

I was surprised to see how many fish bones are in the nest!

The same strong winds that are blowing in DC are blowing on the West End Nest of Thunder and Cholyn and the three eaglets – . Thunder came in with a big fish that was still alive. All have eaten well today.

There has been a lot of Bird Flu in the upper Midwest. It is good to check in on the nest of Mr North and Mrs DNF at Decorah. The two eaglets appear to be fine. Relief.

There is a short video clip of these two attempting self-feeding yesterday.

I showed this image in another posting but it is such a rare occasion that she allows her mate to brood or feed the chicks. So it is worth posting a second time in case you missed it.

So many nests to check and so much going on. It was a real relief to find everyone doing so well on these nests. The weather has been miserable in different places and I hope that it all warms up for tomorrow so that all of our bird mothers have a lovely day.

Thank you so much for joining me. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cal Falcons, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Pix Cams, Explore.org, Friends of Redding Eagles, NEFlorida Eagles-AEF, MN-DNR, NADC-AEF, and Friends of Redding Eagles.

NE27 has a name!!!!!!!

The American Eagle Foundation held a fundraiser. Individuals paid $5 to be able to vote on the name for Samson and Gabby’s youngest eagle of 2022. There were five names to choose from and the winner is…

Rocket is symbolic of the space programme and launches near to the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest. It could also be that NE27 will fly ‘like a rocket’!

The eldest was given the name Jasper because it hatched during the named storm that hit the area, Jasper.

Late Thursday in Bird World

24.2.2022

The Kakapo Recovery are having a t-shirt fundraiser. They posted the following information on their FB today:

There are male and female styles and sizes range from the smallest to 2 or 3 XL. Shipping from New Zealand is reasonable should you wish to help out!

There are lots of chicks and where there are infertile eggs they are being swopped with fertile ones so some of the mothers get a chance to rear a chick. Let’s keep our fingers crossed for that number of 201 to climb! It looks like it could be a good year for our non-flying parrots.

The tracking for Ervie indicates that he did visit the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge sometime yesterday. He was most likely checking to see if Dad was there so they could have a visit. No one spotted him on camera so maybe he landed on the wheelhouse.

Early Friday morning, nest time, and the barge is full of pigeons hoping to find leftovers. They certainly do a great clean up job for Mum!

The Mum at Duke Farms gives everyone a peek of the fully hatched chick 1 at 14:28. What a little fluff ball. So tiny!

It has been a really good day at Captiva. It is 17:46 and Lena is waiting on Andy to bring in the dinner fish. The three osplets still have crops from the earlier feed. All is good!

Gabby and Samson continue to demonstrate branching to Jasper and to be named NE27. Today the two eaglets were kept full to more than full. They have grown so fast. Time seems to go by in a blink. Just a few days ago it seemed they were only tiny fluff balls like chick 1 at Duke Farms today.

Oh, I love that beautiful glow over the nest in Jacksonville, Florida as the sun sets on Gabby, Samson, Jasper and NE27.

NE27 is going to clean up every bit of that fish! Sweet eagle dreams.

Lady Hawk did a great video of Samson bringing in this large carp for the eaglets. Listen to them cheeping. So cute. Gosh these two are just darlings.

There is snow and sleet falling on the nest of Bonnie, the GHOW, whose nest is on Farmer Derek’s land. The area extending from there over the Mississippi River and into Ohio are set to get quite a bit of precipitation.

This is what the Mississippi River Flyway Cam is showing. Looks like snow to me! The snow is really blowing around creating what we call ‘white out’ conditions at times. A white out is literally when you cannot see anything in front and beside you but snow. Highways and roads disappear. People do try to drive on it. They often wind up in the ditch on the opposite side of the road. Not recommended. You cannot even see approaching cars.

The female, Nancy, at the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Bald Eagle Nest near Minneapolis is getting snow as well. This nest fledged two great juveniles last year. Harry, the male, was only four years old and it was his first breeding attempt with Nancy. This year he looks much more like a mature Bald Eagle. Very handsome.

Checking in on the Iowa Bald Eagle nests, there is wet snow coming down on the Denton Home’s nest. No eggs there yet.

There is snow at the Decorah North nest of Mr North and DNF. If you look carefully you can see Mr North high up in the tree. What a beautiful sight.

When the city gets too much for me – as it often does – my mind moves to a cottage at the edge of a forest full of wildlife. This is so beautiful and serene. All you can hear is the snow falling and the wind. There is a creek in the background.

Mrs is keeping the eggs nice and warm and dry.

The other Bald Eagle nest with a streaming cam in Decorah also has snow. No eggs yet and no one on the nest. Right now I can hear lots of geese honking. My goodness they are super loud!

Here is the link to this camera. You might catch the geese flying in also at dusk.

The snow has not reached Pittsburgh but the wind is sure blowing at the Pittsburgh-Hayes Bald Eagle nest tonight. Mum is trying to keep those eggs warm and dry in that cold. With their 7000 plus feathers, the eagles are well equipped to ride out the cold, the snow, and the bitter winds. Regardless, I just ache for them.

The sound of those honking geese reminded me that Ospreys are moving north out of African towards Europe and the UK. A number were reported entering southwest France today. With all the snow here and in other places it is hard to imagine but the birds will be making their way home. In a month there should be Ospreys on a nest or two in the UK. I am counting on one of my favourites, Blue 33, and his partner, Maya, arriving at Rutland first. We wait to see!

In San Francisco, Richmond has been on and off the Whirley Crane nest in the shipping yards anxiously awaiting the arrival of his mate, Rosie. Those two are going to have a lot of work when she gets here. Just look at that nest. Maybe Richmond should take a page out of Louis’s book up at Loch Arkaig and start work before she arrives. Richmond, that would be a very sweet thing to do!

Dyson and Scraggles have been playing in the seeds and snow so they are both fine. The 50 or so European Starlings that visit the nest for food have been perching in my neighbour’s trees. Today they both got a gift certificate for two car washes. My goodness those birds can poop! Little Red has been busy. We did not see our chickadee today but it might have arrived, with or without its mate, while we were off for our walk. It felt good to get out in the fresh air.

Thank you so much for joining me. All the nests are doing quite well. It is comforting. Take care. See you soon. Saturday is pip watch for Jackie and Shadow at Big Bear. Don’t forget.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB where I took my screen captures: Window on Wildlife and Captiva Ospreys, NEFlorida and the AEF, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Kakapo Recovery Project, Denton Homes, Explore.org, Stewards of the Mississippi, MN DNR, Farmer Derek, Golden Gate Audubon, Pix Cams, and Duke Farms.

Saturday in Bird World

First of all, thank you to everyone who sent a note or an e-mail over the tribute to Ervie. It warms my heart to know that so many people, around the world, loved this bird so much. I was over joyed when he showed up on the nest. It was as if he stopped in to Mum and Dad’s house to say hi and see how they were doing and showing them he is OK. I hope that he returns often like that! And, of course, my real wish is that he takes over the barge when Dad and Mum retire. Now wouldn’t that be something!

We are in the midst of yet another blizzard. I really enjoyed the notes from those of you that are missing snow. I wish I could send you a truck load of it! I have tried to take some images today and will put them at the end. One is the garage aka Little Red’s penthouse. The snow is almost to the top of the peak on the gable end. I would so love to share!!!!

In Bird World news, something shocking happened at the Skidaway Island GHOW nest. You might remember it as the Savannah Osprey Nest. It is hard to believe but a Red-tail Hawk knocked the female GHOW off the egg and the newly hatched chick. Cornell Bird Lab posted a video of their encounter.

The two little osplets at the Captiva Osprey nest continue to do well. Andy and Lena are working together like a well-oiled clock. Andy stays on or right around the nest while Lena is busy feeding the babies. Hopefully his presence will deter any predators. Equally important is that one or both are at the nest site around the clock never leaving the babies exposed.

If the third hatch is to be, it should be happening today. The two on the nest get along well and Lena is very good at feeding them. Two healthy osplets would be grand. Oh, I do hope this lovely family is successful. Their streaming cam is here:

I know that I am not even going to try and keep up with what adult is on the Royal Cam Albatross Nest in NZ. Last time I checked it was OGK and then I saw a note that YRK was back! This revolving door is also happening at the NCTC Bald Eagle nest. If you have forgotten, let me bring you up to speed. It is the home of Bella and Smitty. They have been bonded mates for awhile. Bella got into a dispute with an unidentified female and Bella was injured. There were a number of search parties that went out to check on her. They could not find her and people worried that she was severely injured or dead. After more than week, Smitty and the new gal had been on the nest and he was bringing her fish. Well, guess what? Bella returned to her nest this morning!

The eaglets on the nest of Samson and Gabby, NE26 and 27 are doing well. A big fish was delivered and NE26 tried to feed on it and then 27 went over. Gabby flew in and made sure both were full. The discord on this nest is not gone but 27 is doing well. He is still a little submissive but bless his heart, he has his work arounds and manages to get fed well. They will both be fine!

How can you not love a Peregrine Falcon? This showed up on my feed. What is wonderful is that these falcons are living in nature on the cliffs in Japan. It is so beautiful. You will immediately appreciate why the urban falcons love tall buildings with ledges like the 367 Collins Street Nest in Melbourne or the scrape box of Diamond and Xavier at Orange. Enjoy! It will make you anxious for Annie and Grinnell!

This is a good one, too!!!!! Can never get enough of little falcons being fed by their parents.

There were praises all around for the rangers in the Kisatchie National Forest, Steve and Cody, who arranged tours to the forest and a chance to see the nest and the eagles through lots of scopes – one for each attendee. So lucky! The rangers are really promoting the love of wildlife. So happy for those that lived close enough to go.

Kincaid is doing well. Louis broke his fishing record with 20 fish being delivered to the nest between dawn and dusk! Many are covered with moss. Kincaid and Anna are not going hungry! Never.

I have not checked on the WRDC nest in Miami. R1 and R2 have really grown! And both are doing exceptionally well. The cam does not seem to be on line today but I did find a video of the two eaglets eating yesterday. Be prepared to be surprised at how big both of them are! Everything is fine on this nest.

Some nests are having bad weather problems as that system moves through the NE. But everyone seems to be coping really well. The Mum at Pittsburgh-Hayes is incubating three eggs and she has been rolling them seemingly nonplused by the snow. Good for her.

The birds and squirrels in the garden are doing well. You are looking at Little Red’s penthouse. You will notice all the vines. We let them grow thick and deep so that the small birds can get shelter and have a place to hide from Sharpie. In the spring the vines are full of small nests. You can see that the snow is almost up to the roof!

The birds will eat away the snow at the top of the vines.

I am taking these images from inside the house. There are European Starlings eating the snow off the back wood holder.

It just gets deeper and deeper. The paths had about a foot or 30 cm of snow on them this morning when we went out to fill the feeders.

Wishing each of you a wonderful day. Thank you so much for stopping in and checking on the birds. It is wonderful to see they are doing so well and what a joyous day with Bella returning to her nest! She still has some blood on her neck and some scars around her eye and feet but she has healed and that brings much joy. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Captiva Osprey Cam and Window on Wildlife, Pix Cams, NE Florida and the AEF, and the KNF Bald Eagle Nest.

Ervie? and other news

Last night Michael Aird took some amazing images of Ervie fishing. Please go to the Port Lincoln Osprey FB page to see them – and thank him. You do not have to be a member of FB. Just do a search for Port Lincoln Osprey Project.

Ervie did not sleep at the barge last night. Dad brought in a fish at 20:44 for Ervie. Dad waited a bit and then ate the fish on the ropes. Dad slept on the perch. Will Ervie return to the barge? The last image I have of him is the one below on the nest.

Everyone knew that we were overdue for Ervie to leave. That the minutes were precious.

This is the nest today – very lonely without our boy. Dad is on the perch.

If w do not see you again, fly high and safe, Ervie. Catch lots of good fish. Live long! You brought us much joy.

Falky was seen and photographed on 19 February at Port Augusta, 350 km north of the barge nest. There have been no sightings of Bazza.

In other Bird World News, Richmond has been coming to the nest on the Whirley Crane on a regular basis to check to see if Rosie has arrived from her migration. She is expected any time. Come on Rosie. Richmond is anxious to see you as we all are.

The two osplets on the Captiva Osprey nest on Santibel Island, Florida are doing well. There were five feedings yesterday and at least two so far today.

It looks like it is going to be a nice day on the Captiva nest. There have been some alerts. Let us continue to hope that predators stay away.

Both are eating well.

Lena is very loud and Andy responds to her request for fish for the babies by bringing a nice one in for them.

There. Just look at the two of them. Adorable.

So cute. It doesn’t take much fish to fill these two up!

At the Great Horn Owl nest on Skidaway Island, a pip on the egg has occurred. Mama Owl is quit beautiful albeit a we bit wet this morning.

Cornell Lab supplied this video showing the pipping egg:

There are now three eggs at the Pittsburgh-Hayes Bald Eagle nest. Here is a clip of Dad seeing egg three for the first time.

You might recall that I have been in constant praise of Louis on the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest. There have been 10 fish on the nest along with a turtle and a Coot. Well, Louis broke the record with 20 fish yesterday!!!!!!!!! What in the world is his thinking? Many are covered by moss, some still flapping!

Louis and Anna have one eaglet, Kincaid. He is there inspecting the fish getting his beautiful juvenile feathers. Lots of fish for him and Anna. Kincaid was up there trying some self-feeding, too.

I could be wrong but I haven’t see NE26 or NE27 be fed today and it is nearing 13:00 in Florida. Those two might like of that fish on the Kisatchie nest! These two had big crops in the middle of the night so there are no worries – none at all.

The snow has been blowing about the Canadian Prairies. It looks like only a small amount is falling now. Incredible drifts everywhere. It is a good day to hunker down at home.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, NEFlorida and the AEF, KNF Bald Eagle, Golden Gate Audubon and SF Bay Ospreys, Window on Wildlife, and Cornell Bird Lab.

Thank you, Dad!

The camera has been offline at the Port Lincoln Osprey nest. It was difficult not knowing what was going on with Ervie!

When the cam came on, I could hear Ervie fish calling. Oh, he is loud! In a few minutes Ervie was mantling the nest.

Here comes Dad with a headless fish. It is a perfect sharing. Dad catches the fish, eats the head, and gives the rest to his son on the nest.

Ervie was hungry!

He is mantling that fish really well.

Ervie has that fish firmly under his talons. It is not going anywhere – head or not!

Dad pauses for a moment on the edge of the nest. Thanks Dad!

Ervie really enjoyed his breakfast.

Ervie was cleaning his beak at 10:57. Ironically, he had left a little fish. It is on the nest just below his tail. Looks like half of the actual fish tail with some meat on it.

Ervie flew off the nest and the clean up crew were grateful for the morsels of fish. There is a pigeon at the middle of the nest on the right side. It blends in with the wood.

Ervie was definitely hungry. With all of the outages it is hard to know when he last had a fish dinner.

After he finished eating and cleaning his beak, Ervie looked off in the distance.

Then Ervie began to fish cry again! He almost started mantling.

Ervie raised his wings and flew off the nest at 11:09, Monday the 14th of February. Did he land on the shed near Dad? Did he go somewhere else?

Port Lincoln Posted the tracker for Ervie and a beautiful photo. It was taken by Keith Daniels. Ervie was on his front fence in the Lincoln Cove Marina.

Isn’t he gorgeous sitting there looking in? What would you give to have an Osprey sit on your front fence? and what if it was Ervie!!!!!!!! How grand.

Before I close, I went to check on Little Bit at the NEFlorida Bald Eagle Nest. It had a really nice crop before bed! Yippeeeeeeee.

So all is right with the world.

Thank you so much for joining me. It was just wonderful to see these two fed. It is very reassuring that everything is just fine. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to Port Lincoln Osprey Cam and Port Lincoln Osprey FB and Keith Daniels for the photo of Ervie on his fence and the NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF Bald Eagle Cam where I took my screen captures.

A Good Day at the Hamlet

The day started off with a beautiful morning sunrise at the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Samson and Gabby, NE26 and 27, commonly known as ‘Little Bit’. This nest was and is often called ‘The Hamlet’.

It is going to be partially cloudy in Jackssonville, Florida with none of the horrid rain the eagles had the other week. It is 22 C. The wind is blowing at just 8 kmh.

NE 26 hatched on 26 January with 27 hatching on the 25th. Tomorrow, NE26 will be two weeks old!

Nice siblings making a cuddle puddle.

They are a couple of wiggle worms eating and sleeping and moving all over their big nest.

The little nestlings are becoming curious about the environment outside the nest.

Samson and Gabby make sure that both eaglets are full. No one is left out. There are no worries at this nest about Little Bit not getting his share.

In fact, Little Bit hogged most of a feeding today. Meanwhile, 26 sat and watched. 26 still has a crop from an earlier feeding!

Even so, both were fed as much as they could hold.

These little cuties know where the food is but they are not curious like some of the older eaglets on other nests – yet. Notice the clown feet stage is upon us! These two are right on time in terms of development. Those footpads and talons are growing. They are turning yellow and if I could get a close up of their talons we would see that they are now black, not pink.

You can also see the dandelions from the natal down slowly being replaced by their thermal down.

These two are well fed and very healthy. Their eyes are clear. There is no hint of the Avian Pox that Legacy had last year and just look at those fat legs and bottoms!

More feedings! That is Little Bit up front. This is some kind of bird that Samson has brought to the nest.

The feedings are averaging 30 minutes a session – that is a far cry from when these two were ‘wee ones’ and could only eat a couple of flakes of fish at a time.

The eaglets spend between 75-80 days, typically, in the nest before fledging. The first 35 or 40 days are spent eating and growing. We sure see that. The second half their flight feathers come in and they work on skills, such as wingersizing, to help them after they fledge and playing pinecone which helps them learn to grip with their talons.

We are entering week 3 (days 14-21) for both of these eaglets. You will see some changes. The natal down will disappear from their heads last. It might look like they have mohawk hair cuts. Pin feathers will begin to grow in. You will also notice that Gabby and Samson fill up the eaglets even more so that their crops often look so big they can hardly move. It is an exciting time for these babies. At the end of week 3 they will look less like little fuzzy babies and more like eagles.

The feathers will grow and cover their ears, too. It is so exciting – and, at the same time, a little sad. They are so cute when they are wee.

If you haven’t been watching Samson, Gabby, 26 and 27, these wee ones are growing fast. Here is a link to the streaming cam:

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

Thank you to the NEBald Eagles and the AEF for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures today.

Thursday in Bird World

Oh, we started out with more snow this morning! And with it came the return of the European Starlings – a few of them! The phone caught the flakes coming down reasonably well. For now it has stopped and the small feeders with the butter bark, mealworms, and hand chopped peanuts have been filled for the third time. Gosh, they love those mealworms in the winter.

Poor things. This is before we cleared a bit between the piles of snow. You can see one Starling down with thee Sparrows trying to find seed that had dropped from the feeder.

There are at least 60-75 House Sparrows (at a quick count) in the Lilacs. Dyson, our seed sucking Grey Squirrel, has found a litre of Black Oil seed in the square feeder with the dome. He sits and eats and sways like he has his own personal swing. No one bothers Dyson when he is eating but they do hope he gets off balance and dumps a lot of seed below. We won’t tell Dyson that in the evening we put our special food under that feeder for Hedwing, the garden rabbit, who has been showing up at dusk and dawn and sometimes in the middle of the night. It appears he lives under our deck.

So my birds are fed and as happy as they can be til the wind and the snow start again in a few hours.

There is some good news in the world today and there is some very sad news regarding wildlife. Lots of animal rights issues rising to the top of the news. Brief highlights:

The City of Dallas, Texas is protecting two of the cities favourite raptors!

https://dallas.culturemap.com/news/city-life/02-09-22-bald-eagles-white-rock-lake/?fbclid=IwAR3j0kOCOyuruYEWEsoR0wtkkaeceODJB8zLsnaWWodWzzPi3rilKJ3a31Y

As Dallas protects, people in Britain are calling for criminal charges to be laid to the individuals that killed 2 of the 5 White-tailed Eagles reintroduced to the Isle of Wright. The shooting took place near or over a shooting estate. Chris Packham and other environmentalists have called for the end of killing animals for fun!

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/feb/10/two-white-tailed-eagles-found-dead-in-southern-england

Criminal charges have also been laid against one of England’s footballers for dropping and kicking his cat. The fine is set at 250,000 GBP – yes, you read that right. You can find the story on line if you are interested. Now if we could please get all authorities involved and people educated on the rights of animals – and our beloved birds.

The one thing that sent my granddaughter to becoming Vegan six years ago was the culling of male chicks. At the time they were simply tossed alive into a machine not unlike a wood chipper. Today, Germany has ended the practice of culling the male chicks from the females.

Everyone continues to wait to see how the current H5N1 highly pathogenic avian flu will impact European birds. It has been around since 1998 according to virologist Thijs Kuiken. It is rearing its head this year in the UK and has already crossed the Atlantic into Newfoundland, Canada. At least one wildlife rehabber has had almost all the birds in their care killed because of it. Very sad. That was the Whitby Wildlife Centre. They will not be able to resume caring for the wildlife injured for at least 1 year, perhaps 2.

The camera is working on the Port Lincoln Barge and so is the sound. We just can’t see anything but the deck! Ervie was definitely there earlier. I had to turn the sound down. He even sounded like he was getting hoarse and then everything stopped. I hope he got a fish or flew off to find one.

Gabby and Samsons, NE26 and 27 are really changing. They are certainly no longer little fluffy balls. Today they had the rest of the bird on the nest following by some fish. They were really full!

The weather has really improved in Jacksonville.

It is a gorgeous day to incubate eggs over at Duke Farms in Hillsborough, NJ.

OGK has returned after three days at sea to relieve his mate, YRK at Taiaroa Head, New Zealand, home to the Royal Albatross. The image below is actually of YRK feeding the Royal Cam chick that I took late last night. How touching.

To date 26 Royal Albatross eggs have hatched out of 35. The other 9 will not hatch due to embryo deaths.

Dennis Brecht makes frequent and regular visits to the nest of The Love Trio on the Mississippi River near Fulton, Illinois. So far this year he has not spotted Valor I working with Starr and Valor II on the nest. This trio was extremely unique and popular. The question is: does Valor I have his own nest or has something happened to him? We wait for an answer. Brecht has contacted the Stewards of the Mississippi for assistance and finding the answer to the mystery.

The Ventana Wildlife Society is releasing a few condors into the wild currently. One of those was Condor 340 who was treated for lead poisoning.

Condor 340 hatched in 2004 in the Oregon Zoo. Its name is Kun-Wac-Sun. It was released into the Pinnacles National Park in 2005.

Wheeee. How beautiful. A wild Condor flying free again in the Pinnacles.

Kincaid at the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest of Anna and Louis was 4 weeks old yesterday. Oh, this eaglet is getting so big! Finishing up getting its thermal down and you can see the tips of a few juvenile feathers.

I was so happy to see the Captiva Osprey Cam back up and running. Lena is rolling eggs and calling Andy wanting a fish and a break.

You can see the three beautiful eggs. Oh, let us all hope that by laying their eggs a month early this couple will be able to fledge Osprey chicks off Santibel Island.

Hatch watch begins this weekend.

Those are just a few of the many nests to check on. I am really hoping to see Ervie today with a fish! Take care everyone. Thank you for joining me.

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

Late Tuesday in Bird World

First, in my blog Birds and Drones Don’t Mix, the number of Tern Nests evacuated because of the drone crash on Huntington Beach in June 2021, was 3000 not 300 as I reported. Incredible. Can you imagine a whole generation of birds completely wiped out? That is what happened.

This morning Kincaid was waiting for his breakfast when I left to go for my walk. Louis brought seven fish on to the nest while I was away. Kincaid has a full crop. He is such a cutie. The sound is so good at the Kisatchie National Forest Bald Eagle nest that you can clearly hear the eagles chattering. Today, little Kincaid, all interested in what they were doing joined in with his own vocals. It was nothing short of adorable.

My goodness Kincaid is full to the brim! I wonder if that full of a crop is uncomfortable?

Are we heading into a food coma?

Louis is on the nest and Kincaid wonders, even with that huge crop, if he might get a few bites of fish!

Oh, gosh. How do you spell cute? Is it NE 26 and 27?

Samson did a great job of feeding his babies this morning. 26 and 27 both ate really well, had crops and were wonderfully behaved!

The storm has really wiped out the wifi at the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge. No news on Ervie. I am sure they are OK but I wonder how much Ervie has had to eat. With choppy weather, Dad excels at fishing but I doubt Ervie is good enough at fishing to be successful in stormy weather.

Big Red and Arthur both came to the Fernow Light Stand Nest today at 06:57 to check on it. Arthur stayed longer actually rubbing the nest cup to check on it. We are about six weeks away from egg laying – unless Big Red is early!

Falconer Laura Culley will be joining in on the morning chat discussions. It is a great time to learn everything about Red-tail Hawks that you thought you would never want to know.

This is the 25th anniversary of Cornell’s Backyard Bird Count. It takes place this year from 18-22 February. It is free and I urge all of you to join in. This is citizen science at its best – helping to establish which birds are where and how many before the spring migration. Please do take part. Please go to https://www.birdcount.org/participate/ to sign up. You can participate for as few as 15 minutes a day. You can use the Merlin Bird App on your phone or use your desktop or laptop computer. It is fun and it really helps understand bird population growth and decline.

Thanks everyone for joining me today. My regular blog will be coming later in the afternoon for the next week. Take care. Stay safe. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, KNF, and Cornell Bird Labs Red-tail Hawks.

Late Monday in Bird World

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

It is snowing on the Storks near Freiburg, too.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Sleeping quietly under Mum.

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

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

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

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

Lady Hawk caught that sweet reunion.

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

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

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

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