Early Wednesday in Bird World

20 April 2022

The number of intruders or interlopers – or floaters – causing tense interactions at or near nests is becoming increasingly more alarming. We have seen Grinnell at Cal Falcons chase a female intruder from The Campanile only to be killed. Both Alden and Annie have, since, had to defend their territory with one male interloper coming right into the scrape while eggs were being incubated!

When did we realize that the life of our feathered friends is not just fluttering around and singing at sunrise and dusk? It is becoming quite worrisome.

Rosie was incubating eggs at the SF Bay Osprey nest at the Richmond Shipping yard when an intruder arrived. Richmond does not seem to be around and well, just have a look. The adults that have eggs and chicks that depend on them need to be hunting for food not defending nests in situations that might injure or harm them fatally.

It is happening everywhere and events such as these are causing a lot of anxiety. This morning an intruder with a fish tried to land on the Llyn Clywedog nest with a fish after Seren had laid her third egg. Dylan chased it off! Is it my imagination or is it worse this year than last?

There is a real lack of suitable nesting sites. Ospreys have adapted well to various human made objects such as the Whirley Crane in SF or the light stand at the University of Florida in Gainesville. I just learned the other day that there is an Osprey nest on top of one of the light stands at the University of Manitoba. I had no idea. Ospreys will use human made platforms – what they require is that the sky be wide open so they have a 360 view of any predators arriving. Otherwise Ospreys like the tops of dead trees. Bald Eagles like trees but trees – good old sturdy trees – are in decline. Ron and Rita took to the Papadam nest that Ron Magill constructed and, as I have mentioned a couple of times, David Hancock of Hancock Wildlife in British Columbia is construction eagle nests with sun shades! In San Francisco there is a real desire to have some of that prime real estate that The Campanile provides. Good trees and good territories with a growing number of birds looking for them tends to cause much distress.

It is a joy to see these two eaglets after the very rough start at the Dale Hollow nest. Both hatched on the 28th of February. If we count hatch day, they are 51 days old now. More growing, more wingersizing, and more jumping to do before fledging. Thankfully we will be enjoying them for awhile longer.

An adult brought in a small fish. Little Middle stayed back watching. Little Middle has not forgotten that he needs to be cautious. They have had days of many fish and then not much. Hunger could bring out the cranky side of Big. This is typical of eagle nests where the parents tend to show the older eaglets that sometimes it is feast or famine in the wild.

Little Middle moves up to eat before the fish is all gone, thankfully.

Cornell Bird Lab has posted a possible pip watch for Big Red and Arthur. They say they are in uncharted territory with four eggs. We will all be learning something. We will all be anxious to check on the status of this Red-tail Hawk nest first thing!

Wednesday morning. Cornell called a definite pip. Bit breezy there at times today.

You can see the pip in the third egg from the left as Arthur rolls the eggs this morning.

Big Red and Arthur are going to be really, really busy by the weekend.

B15 is 97 days old today. Pa Berry and Missy continue to come to the nest and to bring fish. Sometimes B15 self-feeds and sometimes she wants Mum to feed her. She tried both approaches Tuesday afternoon. It is such a joy that she is staying around the nest – getting strong, figuring out how to live on her own one day.

Well, the first fish of the morning did not arrive until 11:11:14 and it caused tension on the UFlorida Osprey nest at Gainesville.

Each of the chicks was hot and hungry and had been anticipating a nice piece of fish much earlier. As a result the eldest was cranky and Little Bit didn’t help itself by pecking at Big!

As you might well imagine a hot hungry bigger sibling wasn’t too happy and Big turned around and pecked Little Bit until he went into submission. Little Bit needs to not be so cheeky.

What was interesting to me was that, after a couple of minutes, the Mum got tired of the nonsense of the fighting and moved the fish and all three got in line and ate. Well done Mum!

Little Bit went and did a ps at 11:34 and went back to join the line. He has a bit of a crop forming and there is still fish left. Behave Little Bit!

There is a new study that is out in The Guardian this morning warning that protected areas aren’t always protecting the wildlife they should.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/apr/20/protected-areas-dont-always-benefit-wildlife-global-study-finds-aoe

A quick check of what is happening in some of the nests.

Idris and Telyn have their second egg at the Dyfi Nest in Wales as of yesterday, the 19th.

Dylan and Seren 5F have three eggs at their nest at Llyn Clywedog as of today.

The Foulshaw Moss nest of White YW and Blue 35 also have three eggs as of yesterday.

Everyone had a chance to eat fish at the Captiva Nest. Mum Lena is feeding Middle (Little) while Little (Mini) has his own fish on the left.

The two osplets are watching a Crow fly over head. Aren’t they just so beautiful? Look at those amber eyes and that plumage. Gorgeous. Did I say I love Ospreys?

The three eaglets on the West End nest of Thunder and Akecheta are still on the nest. Oh, these kids make me nervous.

Just look at the size of the eaglet standing by Thunder being fed. My goodness. Check out the size of those legs. Wow.

It is certainly a gorgeous morning with that deep cobalt blue water and golden glow filtering on the Two Harbours nest of Chase and Cholyn and their little one.

Voting closes today for the two eaglets of Liberty and Guardian. Be sure to fill in the form and get it in by 5pm Pacific time today! The link to submit a name is below the image.

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSepb87S7zrcMZI6PXzhLCeFD6t21xj5sjw7mEV9n2aT_34CWg/viewform

At the Northeast Florida nest of Samson and Gabby, both of their eaglets have now fledged. Congratulations Rocket!

There will be an on line Q & A about the Cal Falcons on 22 April – that is Friday at 2pm Berkeley time. You can set a reminder!

Betyanka and Bukachek have their first egg at the White Stork nest in Mlade Buky The Czech Republic.

Thank you so much for joining me. There are so many nests with things happening that it is hard to keep up. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures: Capi Mlade Buky White Storks, Cornell Bird Labs, DHEC, Cumbria Wildlife Trust, Dyfi Osprey Project, Redding Eagles, CarnyxWild, Captiva Ospreys and Window for Wildlife, Explore.org, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, and Berry College Eagles.

Saturday morning in Bird World

16 April 2022

The sun is shining bright and there is a possibility that some of the snow will melt. The garden remains full of Juncos! They are all over our City trying to find food at feeders. People have been posting images of Robins eating suet. Poor things. Their migration should have been a good one without the snow storm! This morning, however, there have been about 30 Crows on my street. It is believed that the Great Horned Owl could be in the neighbourhood. They will escort it out!

At the NE Florida Bald Eagle nest of Samson and Gabby, Jasper fledged this morning at 11:12:49!

Rocket watches as Jasper opens up her wings.

And she’s off! Congratulations.

The UFlorida Osprey nest reminds me of Port Lincoln when you had Bazza, Falky, and Ervie lined up eating.

Dad arrives with a nice fish for breakfast.

Mum cheeps at him to leave moving the fish to the other side. Little Bit is right up front and is getting some of the first bites.

Little Bit just gets itself up to the front. Oh, he reminds me of Ervie!

I took a short video clip of one feeding. This nest – so far – really makes me happy.

Dr Sharpe is going up to fix the West End camera today so that we can continue to observe Thunder and Akecheta’s triplets. One of the eaglets has slipped off the left side. Thunder knows where it is and it is hoped that Dr Sharpe can put the baby back in the nest. Send best wishes their way!

Telyn laid the first egg of the season for her and Idris at the Dyfi nest about an hour ago!

There it is!

Little Middle has been over nibbling on one of the pieces of fish on the nest.

For those of you worried about the absence of the female eagle at the Duke Farms nest, she was in the nest this morning feeding the only eaglet. All is good!

Teo visited the only Osprey nest in Latvia!

Teo has been bringing fish to the nest. Two females have been seen at the nest and there was a mating attempt with one of them but there is no confirmation that either were Teo’s mate, Vita. We wait for her to return from her migration.

Here is the link to the Latvian Osprey cam near Kurzeme:

Wow. They are sure beautiful. Is it possible that we are looking at the difference in size now between the male and female juvenile Ospreys? Little Mini in the back with his long legs and Middle the larger female at the front?

Little Mini took off at 07:40:38 for a trip around the nest. He will take his 2, 3rd, and 4th flights today after fledging yesterday. So far Little Mini flies at 07:40;39, 08:06:57, and 08:07:59. you can go back and rewind to see this magnificent bird get the air under its wings.

Middle is watching Little Mini. Look above the palm tree on the right. You can see him.

It is going to be a perfect landing!

There is a theory about males flying first. Since the females are bigger 1/3, it takes longer for all their feathers to grow in compared to the males. Therefore, the males tend to fledge earlier.

Little Mini wants to fly again and again. Both chicks would like a big fish delivery, too!

Here is the link to their camera:

Karl II and Kaia are happy to be reunited in their nest in the Karula Forest in Estonia. They are so beautiful. Last year Karl II and Kaia raised three storklets to fledge from the three eggs that hatched.

Here is the link to their nest:

Suitable trees for nesting are becoming a real issue for all manner of bird species including Eagles, Ospreys, and Black Storks. Here is an article about this issue in Estonia. This is one of the reasons that many, including David Hancock at Hancock Wildlife and Ron Magill, Miami Zoo, are looking at alternative artificial nests.

Do you watch the Osprey nest of Alma and Ossi in Finland? Nesting materials are arriving.

Alma and Ossi have raised eight osplets to fledge since 2017. Here is a link to their streaming cam:

There is absolutely so much happening that it is impossible to keep up with all of the changes. While I am watching one fledge, another could be fledging on a different nest! It is a crazy time – but a good one.

Thank you for joining me this morning. All of the nests look good. Take care. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures and video clips: UFlorida at Gainesville Ospreys, NEFlorida and the AEF, DHEC, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, Eagle Club of Estonia, Duke Farms, Dyfi, Latvian Fund for Nature, and Saaksilive.

Late Wednesday in Bird World

06 April 2022

Everyone watching the Black Stork Karl II breathed a sigh of relief when he crossed the border into Belarus on his way home to Estonia for the spring and summer breeding season. It is a long way from the Sudan and Karl II is almost at the nest. He is spending his time today in the forest in Belarus near this site – image posted by Looduskalender. Thanks Anne7!

River brought in a fish head to the Dale Hollow nest at 16:25:48. She leans over to give Little Middle some bites and Big decides she is eating first! Little Middle moves to the rim and waits. At 16:48:54 Big moves over. The parent flies off. Little Middle moves up and feeds itself. Go Little Middle! It even looks like Big is watching and taking some self-feeding lessons from Little Middle.

Little Middle watches and waits. Once Big moves over he goes up but the adult flies away.

If there is any fish flesh left on that head, Little Middle is going to find it!

You might have been frightened if you had seen Little Middle with that fish bone choking but he finally got rid of it. Great work Little Middle.

Little Middle is a survivor.

The chicks are wet and both of them are hungry. They had a good feed this morning. Maybe a parent will come in before dark with some more fish, maybe not. Little Middle is determined to get every last piece off that fish head!

Richmond and Rosie finished their nest on the Whirley Crane just in time. There is no rewind on the camera but Rosie just rolled their first egg. She laid it on the 5th of April.

That dirty little Ragmuffin’ of OGK and YRK at the Taiaroa Head Royal Albatross Colony in New Zealand is a girl.

This is why I really like Blue 33 (11). He is right there with Maya after she lays her third egg of the 2022 season! These two are the darlings of Manton Bay at Rutland.

Over at the West End Bald Eagles, Thunder flew in with a fish at 15:33. Didn’t take the triplets long to line up and get ready for their afternoon snack. The oldest eaglet will be 30 days old tomorrow.

Just down the way at Two Harbours, the only chick that hatched earlier today for Chase and Cholyn had some fish juice and saliva. Cutie Pie.

The cold wind is howling through Iowa. Mother Goose is paying no mind to a Bald Eagle that has come around for a visit while she incubates her 6 or 7 eggs at Decorah, Iowa.

At the Decorah North Bald Eagle nest, Mr North and Mrs DNF have two fluffy 10 and 11 day old eaglets to keep fed. They are both looking good! Mr North is taking a turn feeding them. Oh, so cute when they are still fuzzy wuzzies.

My goodness. Those wee ones and then Jasper and Rocket at the NEFlorida nest of Samson and Gabby who are branching and thinking about flying. All we have to do is blink and they leave the nestling stage and get ready for the adventures that their lives will be. Jasper and Rocket have certainly been entertaining. You might recall that like Little Middle, Rocket taught itself to self-feed long before Jasper.

This year has been a wonderful season for Jackie and Shadow. Spirit is 33 days old. Hatched on the 3rd of March do you remember how you watched and hoped beyond hope that Jackie and Shadow would have a successful hatch this year? I know many of you shed tears of joy when this beautiful bird hatched.

In Redding, Liberty and Guardian are on the nest with the two eaglets alerting. Something has caught their attention.

At the Pittsburgh Hayes nest each eaglet is fed. No one is left out. They are doing fabulous. A fresh fish has just arrived on the nest.

At the USS Steel Bald Eagle nest, the first chick hatched on 4 April and they are on pip watch for egg #2.

If you ever go to the National Arboretum Nest and do not see an eagle on the nest, be assured that they are close by.

It is a wonder that the wee one ever gets some sleep. It feels like Mr President and Lotus are always feeding the baby.

Just the other day this little white bundle of fluff was more like a round teddy bear. Look at how much those wings have grown and its neck!

All of the nests and scrapes are doing well. Many continue to mourn the loss of little MO, the 4th eaglet at the PA Farm nest. It appears that little MO was not under Mum and when the rain and cold came last night, he died of hypothermia. Of course, without a necroscopy this will not be known for sure. We hope that the other three on the nest continue to thrive and are grateful for the joy that little MO brought to our lives. It is always difficult to losing a wee one.

It is a cold nasty day on the Canadian Prairies. Soaking wet with snowy rain continuing to fall.

Thank you for joining me today. It is always wonderful to have you with us. Looking forward to seeing you again soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures: Golden Gate Audubon and SF Ospreys, Looduskalender, Pix Cams, Explore.org, Redding Eagles, Dale Hollow Eagle Cam, NADC-AEF, Redding Eagles, Friends of Big Bear Valley, LRWT Manton Bay, Cornell Bird Lab and NZ DOC, Friends of Big Bear Valley, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF.

Late Saturday News in Bird World

2 April 2022

I have tried desperately to get an image of both of Little Middle’s legs since I took my walk in the woods. This is the best I could do. At 11:34:26 Little Middle is facing the rim. He moves to the right but the footage of that .79 seconds is not there. At 11:35:15 Little Middle is facing the right – the gap did not allow for a look at that left leg that was having problems with the monofilament line cutting the flesh yesterday. It continues to be hard to get a clear look at the legs and talons.

The first image was taken at 08:22. The line is around the talons of the left foot. Cannot see if the line is anywhere else. It appears that Little Middle is not pulling the nesting material behind him anymore. Whether or not that is a good thing is not known. Where is that long piece of monofilament?

This image of Middle Little attempting to walk standing up was taken after noon. The talons appear not to have the line tightly around them on the left foot. This is good. The right foot appears to be clear in this instance.

These images were taken at 15:48. I tried to blow them up as best I could. The right leg and talons appear alright to me.

The toes on the left foot are not would tight like yesterday. It appears there is still line on toe 2 and 3.

I want to thank each and everyone of you that wrote in concerned about Middle Little. ‘L’ has been speaking with Al Cerere, the founder of The American Eagle Foundation, which has its home in Tennessee where this nest is. Al is no longer the Director but he cares about eagles, is extremely well respected, and can get action. He returned ‘L’ phone call and asked this afternoon how long the line has been attached to Middle Little, the age of the eaglets, and the height of the tree. This is excellent. Through the help of Paul Kolnik with the Bald Eagles 101 FB group I have been put in contact with individuals in the area but on the Kentucky side that might have some leverage. Another wonderful sleuth, ‘L’ has gotten me the numbers of the State Ornithologist in TN. Ron Magill at the Miami Zoo is among the several dozen individuals that have been contacted. I remain hopeful – that Mother Nature will get that line off or that an intervention can occur.

Today, the FB group for the Dale Hollow Eagles posted a message. It was copied and sent to me by ‘C’ who lives in Belgium. It said: “”Dale Hollow Eagle Cam. If someone acted to help one baby, both babies would most likely die or the nest would be abandoned by the parents. Let the experts handle the situation. I know it can hurt to see one of the babies die, but it happens.”

I would really like to know the experts that they are quoting!

There are many FB groups connected with nests that have nothing to do with the owner or operator of the camera. A good example is the Cornell Red Tail Hawk cam at Ithaca. The FB group is run by a group of people that love Big Red and Arthur. They have no influence at all as to what happens on that nest. I know – I do their puzzles. Toni Castelli-Rosen lives in California and she is the administrator of the group! We post about the nest comings and goings but we have no influence on anyone. So, it is difficult to know in what capacity that message was posted. Even some of the chats connected with cameras have no one associated with the nest moderating them – for example, Achieva Osprey in St. Petersburg, Florida. In the situation we find ourselves in with regard to River and Obey’s nest and eaglet, it is always best to let the real eagle experts figure out how best to handle this. I am a little shocked that the people from Dale Hollow immediately believe that this is not something that can be undertaken!

In instances such as this, it is best to rely on what you have seen with your own eyes in terms of deciding whether the message is true or false. We have seen rescues on many nests including the Captiva Osprey to obtain Big’s body for testing, at SWFlorida where Harriet returned quickly, at Captiva Bald Eagles where it was fishing line, etc. Each was successful. Ron Magill took the monofilament line off R2 at the Miami Zoo nest last week!

By luck, I found this today when I began to search who had control over the camera and the nest. It is very informative.

This is the link to this page: http://daleholloweaglecam.net/

The phone has been disconnected.

I remain hopeful that one of the leading experts on eagles will have some influence to get help for Little Middle OR the line will come off on its own. I know that none of us would want to endanger the life of any bird.

The young male that is trying to woo Annie might be around. She is looking up. Last night he brought her what looked like a nicely plucked pigeon. She did not accept the prey gift. Perhaps she is still trying to decide – accepting the prey is akin to making a lifetime commitment!

Annie is so beautiful. I continue to try and write a tribute to Grinnell and I find I am having a hard time separating the two. It was always ‘Annie and Grinnell’.

We wait to see what Annie decides!

The youngest eaglet on the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Samson and Gabby, Rocket NE27, branched this morning around 07:57.

Everyone is preening at the Captiva Osprey nest of Andy and Lena!

Such good camouflage on the nest, too, in case of predators. The osplets are too large for the Crows to bother and it looks like Andy and Lena are going to fledge two lovely birds this season. Isn’t it wonderful for them? Still no word on the cause of Big’s death.

DC9 is barely hatched and already this little fluff ball that was mostly ’round’ yesterday is getting elongated! DC9 hatched on 28 March.

Happiness is always checking in at the West End Eagle nest of Thunder and Akecheta.

These kids are all spread out today!

I will continually report on the spring migration of Karl II because of his satellite tracker and the locations that he must fly through. I am grateful to Anne7 from Looduskalender Forum for posting this information. I don’t think she will mind that I share it with you.

I am waiting to find out how tall the tree is for the new nest at Dale Hollow. I know nothing might come of it but Al Cerere is asking the right questions and if someone can help, he can get things moving. I owe you big time, ‘L’. Thank you for pressing on to get in touch with him. At the moment River is on the nest calling Obey to bring in a fish.

Thank you for joining me today. Thank you to all of you for your efforts and your positive wishes for Middle Little. Take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or pages where I took my screen captures: Dale Hollow Eagle Cam, Looduskalender Forum, NADC-AEF, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, Captiva Osprey Nest and Window on Wildlife, West End Bald Eagles, and Cal Falcons.

Late Tuesday and early Wednesday in Bird World

29-30 March 2022

One of the most wonderful things about birds is the fact that they just carry on. Whether or not they are buried in snow, soaked to the core from torrential rains, or thrown about their nests with huge wind gusts, they just get up and get on with it. They give me hope and most always put a smile on my face. There is a rhythm to their lives that provides us as watchers with hope and solace.

Most love to watch as the parents feed their young – from the tiniest saliva bites for new hatchlings to that third week when the crops get so full they look like they will pop to surrendering the prey on the nests when the babies are self-feeding. Most of the parents give it their all. I cannot imagine for an instant what it must be like to feed four bobble heads and keep them alive. A human who has four infants would find that a huge challenge. It makes me appreciate the birds even more.

All lined up nicely for Mum Thunder. There has not been any discord at this nest. I continue to remind people that the youngest, in the middle of the image below, is four days younger than the eldest. Little Bit at Dale Hollow was three days younger.

Thunder taking care and feeding the triplets.

Thunder and Akecheta are up early feeding the triplets this morning.

Both eaglets at the Dale Hollow nest of River and Obey are are 30 days old today. At 06:48:21 a parent flew in with a sucker, not huge but not a bad breakfast.

Little Middle never knows what kind of mood Big will be in so he immediately begins to move to get away and let Big go eat.

He walks down to the rim watching and listening. The adult has not begun to feed Big. The parent is sitting and watching- not only the happenings on the nest but also in the territory of the nest.

Big has moved over to the fish and on a side that would separate Little Middle from the feeding. The adult is looking around and still not feeding. Middle Little is cautious but this time hurries up along the rim making its way up to the table! Smart. Little Middle waited too long last night and lost out on the fish. He is hungry this morning.

The parent feeds Middle Little all of the first bites. Big does nothing. Just watches.

The adult feeds a tiny portion of the fish to the two and then abruptly flies off at 07:17:58.

Little Middle is working on his balance and does a great PS.

Both eaglets settle down and wait for the parent to return. What a great start to the morning. Is it magic when they turn a month old they become civil? We wait to see.

First time mothers with bobble head babies seem to have some difficulty figuring out the right angle to hold the beak and feed the little one. Last year I thought Anna and the Kistachie National Forest nest would never figure out how to feed Kisatchie! They both got it! And Lotus and the wee one at the National Arboretum Nest in DC will get there, too. It is truly difficult to hit a bobbling target!

It looks like Mr President is asking Lotus how much more fish he needs to bring to the nest!!!!!

It is Wednesday morning and all is well with the new hatchling of Mr President and Lotus. Oh, it is so sweet.

Easy to see the egg tooth – the white bit at the tip of the black beak – that hammered away at that shell. Oh, so clean and white.

Turn your beak sideways, Lotus!

Liberty and Guardian have a couple of cuties that are not having any problems getting down to feeding.

I keep asking Liberty if she would please feed them so we could see. It doesn’t seem to be working! The little ones have had lots of meals on Tuesday with Liberty keeping her back to the camera. Too funny.

I wonder how many are following the Great Horned Owls that took over the Osprey nest near Savannah on Skidaway Island? The nestling has grown in remarkable time. It is just starting to get the tufts on top of its head. No one knows what the actual purpose of the tufts is. Does it help camouflage the owls by breaking up the line of the head? or are they there to show the mood of the owl? Little Grey is alone on the nest except when a parent comes to bring food or feed it. Cornell took a video clip of Dad delivering a duck dinner to Little Grey.

It may be cool in Big Bear Valley but the snow and rain have stopped. Jackie and Shadow did super taking turns brooding and feeding throughout the storm. The chick hatched on 3 March making it 27 days old today.

Yes, you are cute.

Before I forget, the results of the naming contest for Jackie and Shadow’s eaglet will be announced after the area has its spring break. That would be 4 April. Can’t wait!

Abby and Blazer’s eaglets have their juvenile plumage. The sun is setting and sending a soft golden glow on the pair of eaglets being fed this evening. They are never too old to want to be fed by Mum.

The surviving eaglet at Duke Farms hatched on the 24th of February making it 34 days old today if you count hatch days. It is really growing and covered in thermal down with its contour and wing feathers growing in nicely.

Mum and Dad were both on the nest for the feeding as the sun gently sinks into the horizon Tuesday night.

It looks like the Duke Farms eaglet is having fresh squirrel for breakfast on Wednesday.

The triplets at Pittsburgh-Hayes are growing and behaving themselves at meal time! What a nice relief.

Mum is up early making sure everyone gets a good start. This nest will require lots of prey and many feedings to make sure each gets enough.

The parents are old hands at taking care of triplets. They fledged three last year!

Wow! What a difference. Just imagine. Before you blink, those three nestlings at Pittsburgh Hayes pictured above will be the size of Jasper and Rocket at the NE Florida nest of Samson and Gabby! And they will be self-feeding.

Here is a video of Jasper and Rocket enjoying a live fish! It is one of the many lessons the parents teach them so they can deal with all situations in the wild and survive.

All is well with Andy and Lena at the Captiva Osprey nest in Florida this morning. It is getting more and more difficult to tell Middle from Little at this nest. That is fantastic. There continues to be no word on the cause of Big’s sudden death.

In the world of UK Ospreys returning from migration, a super Mum, Blue 35 (2010) has arrived at her nest at Foulshaw Moss in Cumbria. She landed at 13:09. Last year Blue 35 was tired of the two older and much larger siblings eating all the fish and Tiny Little Bob not getting much. There is Tiny Little on the far left.

So Blue 35 pulled a fast one. She fed the two large siblings til they were full and flew off with the rest of the fish. When they went to sleep, she returned to the nest and fed Tiny Little Bob. Tears flowed with joy! With the help of Mum and Dad’s (White YW) great fishing, Tiny Little grew and grew becoming the dominant osplet on the nest.

So welcome back, Blue 35. What a great Mum you are.

I continue to follow the Black Stork Karl II’s migration from the Sudan to his nest in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. Here is the route that he took last spring returning home. His migration pattern is in royal blue.

If he stays to the west and if the fighting and burning are not bad, well, fingers crossed! We want them to stay way to the west of Odessa and Kiev.

There is severe weather coming to parts of the United States that will impact many of the nests that you are watching. If you live in this area, please stay safe and watch for the storm warnings. Send all positive wishes for our birds that are outside in a nest when raging winds, rain, and tornadoes hit.

It has been a good start to the morning at all of the nests. We can’t ask for anything better than Little Middle getting to share a fish breakfast with Big without a single second of intimidation.

Thank you to everyone who worried about our snow and ice. The snow is still here on the ground and it is a dreary grey-white morning but everything is fine. Thank you for being with us this morning. Send all your best wishes for continuing prey and health for all of the bird birds. Also, take care of yourself. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cumbrian Wildlife Trust, NEFlorida Bald Eagles-AEF, Looduskalender Forum, Friends of Big Bear Valley, Dale Hollow Bald Eagles, West End Bald Eagles, Redding Bald Eagles, Pix Cams, Cornell Bird Lab and Audubon, CNN Weather Tracker, NADC-AEF, Eagle Country, and Duke Farms.

It’s Sweet Eaglet Dreams at Dale Hollow and…other news in Bird World

24 March 2022

The image below pretty much says how the day has gone for Little Middle (notice my new nickname for DH15) at the Dale Hollow Bald Eagle nest. I do not have the time stamp but it was mid-afternoon. River had fed the kiddos all of the food on the nest. You can almost hear the two siblings comparing their crops – Little Middle insisting that his is ultimately larger because he is so much smaller than Big!

It has not been a day without its troubles, without Middle Little striking the submission pose to protect its head when Big would get up to eat. But, so far, it has been nothing like yesterday at all.

At 16:56 Obey? arrives with a fish. Big and Middle Little are too full to even think about having any bites of that fish.

Obey takes the time to aerate more of the nest.

Obey? begins calling and flies off. River? returns with a small Sucker.

At 17:11:46 s/he tries to feed Big.

Nope. Too full. Little Middle turns to face parent for a feeding but, ultimately, he is too full. Big does not even acknowledge that Little Middle is moving by the fish. Talk about a 360 degree turn.

Parent begins to bury the fish in the nest. By 17:24:25 Little Middle is ‘thinking’ about fish and drops its crop a bit. But Little Middle is just thinking and not eating. At 17:43:52 Little Middle moves over by the fish and does a couple of pecks at it.

It is now 18:09. The nest is calm.

There are two fish (Suckers) on the nest and whatever else River has hidden. Neither of the two eaglets are interested in eating. So, how to have a happy nest? how to stop intimidation? Keep the fish coming in for several days in a row. Are we beginning to turn the corner at the Dale Hollow nest? Gosh, I sure hope so!

River is looking at them and she knows bedtime is coming. Will she try to feed the pair again?

Yes. At 18:36:51, River unzips the large Sucker at the top right of the nest.

At 18:37:07 River offers the first bite to Little Middle. Is this a mistake?

Little Middle wants to move around to the other side of River. Good move. River feeds Big.

Smart. If Big gets mad, Little Middle is protected by being on the other side of Mum.

At 18:48:25 Little Middle takes a chance and moves up between Mum and Big. What is he thinking???!!!!!!

Goodness. Little Middle gets some bites and also reaches down and eats some of the flakes of fish off the nest. Talk about brave! Whoooooaaaa.

Wow. That worked out. Little Middle is totally stuffed and walks away from the feeding area at 18:53.

You could set an alarm by Obey’s regular 19:00 visit to check on the nest. He must be happy with what he sees – two full healthy eaglets.

The feeding is over. There is one fish hidden and half of the large sucker remaining for tomorrow morning. Sweet eaglet dreams everyone. It has been a good day at Dale Hollow.

Other Nests: There is a pip in the first egg at Decorah North for Mr North and Mrs DNF. That pip started at 12:46. Just after I was thinking that the Cal Falcon scrape of Annie and Grinnell was secure, Annie flies off to hunt or something and Grinnell entertains one of the five juvenile females that are trying to entice him. Grinnell, behave yourself! BTW. This is not normal behaviour and ‘B’ suggested today that Grinnell has not been the same since his injury 29 October. I agree. This scrape is certainly better than the old soap operas that used to be on the telly that my Grandmother watched!!!!!! There is also a pip in the second egg at the MN DNR nest of Harry and Nancy.

Parents at Pittsburgh Hayes are doing great with their two wee ones. Dad hauled in a massive fish after the following video was posted.

Jasper and Rocket at the NEFlorida nest of Samson and Gabby are still home, still self-feeding, and still adorable.

The two little ones of Liberty and Guardian on the Redding Bald Eagle nest need a bath! It is not clear if it was a coot or a duck but they are now being fed one of the organs. They have not injured one another – it is just the feeding!

Thunder brought in a really nice fish to the West End Bald eagle nest. The trio lined up nice and straight and very polite for their feeding.

At the Captiva Osprey Nest Lena is using her peripheral vision and is really hoping that Middle doesn’t hit her with a PS.

Lena has moved over because she knows that Andy is incoming with dinner. The kids are excited to see a fish on the nest.

Martin has at least 5, perhaps more, super large fish on his nest with Rosa at Dulles-Greenaway. Wish he could courier a couple of those over to Dale Harbour.

And if you want to imagine a spread in hatch days, these are the dates for Big Red’s eggs: March 14, 17, 20, and 23. Yes, the difference from egg 1 to 4 is 9 days.

Arthur would really like Big Red to move so he could have a turn incubating those precious eggs.

It has been a good day! Thank you so much for being here with me. Looking forward to seeing you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, Dale Hollow Eagle Cam, West End Bald Eagles and the Institute of Wildlife, MN DNR, Pix Cams, Dulles-Greenaway Eagles, Redding Eagle Cam, Captiva Ospreys, and NE Florida Bald Eagles.

Friday Morning in Bird World

18 March 2022

I am a night owl and not generally up before 07:00. This morning I wanted to check on the status of the Dale Hollow nest. In all the sadness there, it is good to pause and to continue to thank all those amazing ‘bird’ mothers and dads out there. Over the years I have seen them separate chicks, get their mate to help with tandem feedings, and go fishing or hunting themselves to ensure that there was ample food for all on the nest. I am desperately trying to understand the ‘root cause’ of the issues at Dale Hollow that have taken us to this morning. River has come into the nest alerting and Big is still attacking. Rain started at 10:17.

It was a beautiful morning on the Gulf of Mexico at the Captiva Osprey nest in Florida. Lena was up waiting and trusting that Andy was going to get a fish on the nest for Middle and Little (Little and Mini). Andy did not disappoint!

The chicks are full and Lena is going to go for her bath to get off all the fish. Middle and Little look great!

At the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Samson and Gabby, breakfast has arrived. Jasper is being fed and Rocket is self-feeding. If you are new to this nest, the eldest, Jasper once demanded to be fed first and tried to keep Rocket from eating. Rocket became an expert at the ‘snatch and grab’. Rocket even took fish from the parents and was a pro at self-feeding early. Rocket learned great survival skills.

These two have not branched yet but that stage of their development is coming soon.

DG1 has had a few feedings already this morning at the Dulles Greenaway Bald Eagle nest in Virginia. Martin even took a turn at feeding the chick while Rosa had a break.

This little one is alert and ready for some more fish!

There is a second egg but time for pip is passing. Maybe this little one DG1 will be an only child.

There are three eggs being incubated at the Pittsburg Hayes Bald Eagle nest and this week we are on pip watch.

Are you a teacher looking for resources to teach about Bald Eagles? The Pittsburgh Hays Bald Eagle nest has posted a link to the Audubon Resources. Not a teacher? Have a peek. We are never too old to learn!

http://www.aswp.org/pages/educator-resources

The US Steel Bald Eagle nest was built in 2019. Eaglets have fledged from that nest in 2020 (1 fledge) and in 2021 (2 fledges). There are two eggs being incubated on this nest and Dad is on duty this morning.

At the White-tailed Eagle nest in Matsalu National Park in Western Estonia, the breeding couple are on the nest. Last year, two eggs were laid. The first on 20 March and the 2nd egg on the 24th of March. Both chicks died. Cause of death was confirmed to be H5N1, the highly pathogenic Avian Flu.

The White-tailed eagles are extremely rare in the Balkans and it is hoped that this nest is successful in fledging little eaglets this year. Here is a link to the camera:

Milda is at her nest in Durbe Municipality near the city of Liepaja in Western Latvia.

Milda has a new partner this year after losing her long time mate, Raimis, last year after she had laid her eggs. Her new mate, Mr L, and Milda bonded last year. I hope that he is of good help to her and that this nest also has successful fledges this year. There are many interlopers and both eagles have been on alert today.

Everything is great at the West End Eagle nest of Thunder and Akecheta. The three sleepy heads looked around when it was time for breakfast! Like what, is it that time already!?

The to be named chick at the Big Bear Valley nest of Jackie and Shadow is 15 days old today. It is doing really, really well. It is good to keep in perspective the size of this chick compared to DH16, Little Bit, on the Dale Hollow nest. There are stressors on the little ones that cause a lack of feather development or lines in the feathers. This wee one is getting 8 or 10 feedings a day and is extremely healthy.

Big Red is patiently incubating her two eggs in the shade on the grounds of Cornell University campus in Ithaca.

That is it for me this morning. Every nest that we are following is doing well except for Dale Hollow. I really hate to see the Little Bit suffer. Nature is not kind. I hope to have some new Osprey arrivals for you late this evening. There is still no word on the cause of Big’s death at Captiva. We wait for the results.

Take care everyone. Thank you for being with me today.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Looduskalendar, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Pix Cams, Friends of Big Bear Valley, West End Bald Eagles and the Institute of Wildlife Studies, Latvian Fund for Nature, The Eagle Club of Estonia, Dulles-Greenaway Bald Eagles, and NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF.

Late Monday in Bird World

Any worries about the bopping that Big Bob seems to want to inflict on Little Bob as of late should be cast aside. Little Bob is a survivor and he won’t let anything Big does keep him from his favourite fish! At the feeding around 15:00, all three Bobs had enormous crops. Little Bob was the last one to leave the table.

Each of the trio looked like they would just about pop.

Everyone is hot at the Captiva Osprey nest. The chicks are panting to help thermoregulate.

Lena decided to go for a dip in herr own private area of the Gulf of Mexico to cool down. Lena has a pretty enormous crop, too. She went for her dip right after feeding the chicks. One thing Lena seems to really dislike is fish oil on her feathers. She has returned and is trying her best to keep the babies shaded, too.

It’s Monday and the fishing is good.

Meanwhile in Big Bear Valley, Jackie has fed the wee babe again at 13:01. I sat and giggled at the size of the pieces she was offering the eaglet.

Would you like some fish tail, darling?

Or, perhaps this is a better size????

It was quite humorous. I had a feeling, at one point, that Jackie was trying to demonstrate horking to the nearly four day old chick. Horking meaning to eat very quickly a large piece that would otherwise be eaten in smaller bites.

Jackie then settled into feeding the wee one smaller bites til it had a nice crop and was ready for another nap and some more growth.

Adorable.

NE 27 continues to do the snatch and grab rather well. He stole an entire fish from Samson today. 27 was already full, almost to the brim. Perhaps Jasper will get some time to practice his self-feeding if and when 27 gives up on the fish. Meanwhile, this is a short clip (don’t blink) of NE27 walking and doing some wing exercises.

B15 at the Berry College nest of Pa Berry and Missy is the sweetest little eaglet. It still has that adorable face it had when it was wee and a great big curiosity about the world around it. Pa Berry has been bringing in all manner of prey items. A squirrel landed on the nest for breakfast.

It scares the wits out of me when the eaglets look over the rim of the nest like B15 is doing below!

I missed him! Did you? This is the most recent tracking report on Ervie.

Awwww. Would have given anything to see Ervie. Bet I was watching Big Bear at the time.

There was a report of 130 Mallards and 1 American Black Duck at an open piece of water in one of the two big rivers that flows through our City. This one was the Red River. And, yes, they were there. Hard to see as I was scandalously far away and didn’t have my 2x adaptor.

Just before I took off to find the ducks and that small open piece of water, Little Red had been waiting, warming himself in the sunshine, while another Red squirrel had their eyes on his penthouse. Little Red wanted some of the peanuts I put out before Dyson got them but he decided to protect his territory instead.

Dyson, on the other hand, was being a right little trouble maker today. I put out a new square hanging feeder full of a mixture of Butter Bark, peanuts, and Black Oil seed. So what does Dyson do? He creeps through the Lilac bushes and takes a flying leap at it! About 2 litres of seed fell on the ground. What a mess!!!! Dysonnnnnnnnn!!!!!!!!

Dyson saw me watching. Whether or not he was concerned is another story as he sat and stuffed his cheeks for more than ten minutes. Then when I moved to another window, he decided that sitting inside the lilacs and eating his prize seeds was best. He was still going in and out for quite a long time.

As it warms up the squirrels seem to be coming out more. There are rabbit tracks all around the garden so we know that Hedwig is around and the Little Woodpeckers – both Mr and Mrs Downy – have been around most days at the suet feeder. Sharpie even flew through at least once yesterday causing everyone to flee hither and yon. Thankfully the European Starlings have dropped considerably in numbers at the feeders. There are now only about 7 or 8. It gives the other birds a chance to flit in and out including the Black Capped chickadee who visits daily.

I hope that this quick and short newsletter finds you well. Again, most of the bird nests are doing fine. There seem to still be intruders about at some nests and the wee one at Duke Farms still has trouble getting to the table. I am going to hold my breath and check on it and Dale Hollow in a couple of days.

Thank you so much for joining me. Take care.

Thank you to the following streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Friends of Big Bear, Berry College Eagles, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, and Friends of Big Bear Valley.

Late Sunday Afternoon in Bird World

06 March 2022

The first hatch at Big Bear Valley, the nest of Bald Eagles Jackie and Shadow, has had five feedings so far. The first was at 05:51 followed by 07:57, 09:06, 10:15, and the last one, just finished, at 13:24. The wee one is doing so well and already looks like it has doubled its size in just three days (or nearly). The wee chick did its first poop shot (ps) at 10:15:59 demonstrating that all of its plumbing is working.

The eagles are restless today. Jackie is currently being very careful to roll that second egg. With the wet straw in the egg cup, it is difficult to tell if there is a pip or a pip and a crack.

Here are some images from the Big Bear nest of Jackie and Shadow from the late morning to early afternoon for you to enjoy.

Shadow helped Jackie with the feeding at 10:15 and took over brooding and incubation duties much to his delight. Shadow will remain on the nest until Jackie returns at 13:19. They will then both feed the wee chick.

Both adults have been staring at the chick and the egg and moving ever so slowly around the nest. I love how they back off the egg and chick so they can see them. They could, so easily, step all over everything if they got off incubation/brooding by moving forward. If you watch, they are ever so careful with their big feet and talons.

Oh, what a big yawn!

Do you see anything like a pip or a crack on this egg?

Both help with the 13:24 feed. You can hear the Corvids in the background. That must frighten Jackie and Shadow alerting them that they have to be ever so careful about coming and going from the nest – making sure that someone is always home.

The chick is eating much bigger bites than yesterday. Look how big it is compared to the egg. That is how much this wee babe has grown in 70 hours.

The nestling eats small pieces of the meat or fish along with saliva from the parents and juice from the prey items. This provides much needed antibodies and nutrients as well as electrolytes. Electrolytes keep our bodies balanced, in terms of fluids and in terms of salt and sugar. if you have dehydrated animals, electrolytes are given like an IV to rehydrate. They are essential for a healthy system.

This chick is getting fed approximately 8-10 feedings each day.

Such a good baby.

The egg has been rolled several times. Did it pick up wet and dirty straw that has clung to it so that we think it is a pip or a crack? I wonder. Big Bear has not announced a pip on the second egg.

Adorable. Jackie is such a proud Mama. She takes over from Samson and lets him have a much needed break. Meanwhile, the weather is just so much better than yesterday.

Other Bird World News:

The Pied Cormorant is still hanging around Dad’s perch at the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge.

The trio at Captiva Osprey nest have been enjoying a nice afternoon fish that arrived sometime around 14:15.

Everyone will stagger away with a nice big crop and be rehydrated. They are hot in that Florida sun.

The two nestlings at Duke Farms Bald Eagle nest are doing just fine.

Anna and Louis have been spending a lot more time with Kincaid over the last week. It will not be long til this 8 week old eaglet is branching and before we know it, Kincaid will fledge. These are adorable parents. It has been a real privilege watching them take care of Kincaid.

Jasper and NE27 continue to do well. NE27 is so far ahead of Jasper on the self-feeding but slowly, ever so slowly, Jasper is catching on. I hope that we have a name for NE27 this coming week. That would be super. Beautiful eagles out of the NEFlorida nest of Samson and Gabby.

Just a few hours ago E20 branched up to the Veranda at the SWFlorida nest of Harriet and M15. Now both eaglets have branched. It will not be long until these two fledge.

Lady Hawk caught the branching in a short video:

Thank you so much for joining me for this end of the day nest check on Sunday. Everything is fine. Our sweet Ervie has not been back to the barge and continues to hang out around the North shore. I hope he is enjoying every mouthful of fish that he catches. Oh, the joy he brought us. I wish he would just take a quick fly over to the barge and hang out for a bit. I bet you do, too. Take care all. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Big Bear Valley, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, KNF Bald Eagles, and Duke Farms.

Monday in Bird World

It is -10 C on the Canadian Prairies on a day that can only be described as white. There is no colour in the sky and while I had anticipated including images of a different landscape due to melting, well, that hasn’t happened. The snow appears to be melting from the inside of the snow banks and tunnels slowly – which is a good thing! Today and for several days this week, we will continue having yet more of the white fluffy flakes. It has – weather wise – been a winter we will not forget for a long time.

I have been reading Mark Avery’s blog. Avery spent his life working with the RSPB in the UK and is an outspoken defender of ‘nature’. He was their Conservation Director for 13 of the 25 years he worked for them. I will include the link to his blog at the end. The current topic is ‘Alternatives to grouse shooting’.

Avery also includes a short list of books he has read and their reviews at the bottom. One of those was The Consolation of Nature. Spring in the Time of the Coronavirus. Three nature writers – Michael McCarthy, Jeremy Mynott, and Peter Marren – keep a ‘nature’ diary running parallel with happenings with the pandemic for the period of spring 2020. They begin with the astronomical beginning of spring on the 21 March running through 31 May when summer begins. (Meteorological beginning of spring is 1 March). My interest in this book is the emphasis on the healing aspects of nature and how, during the beginning of this horrific virus, people turned to nature for solace. All of us watch bird cams. Did you know that in the UK from the period 23 March to 31 May 2019, there were 20,407 page views of bird cams. During the early period of the pandemic this increased to 433,632 views! It was a similar situation at Loch Arkaig where 400,000 people watched Louis and Aila raise their three osplets. Indeed, it was an amazing year for nature as we isolated ourselves. Few if any planes, few if any cars. When we stopped, nature thrived. “Fish returned to the canals of Venice, no longer churned up by tourist boats. In parts of northern India, the Himalayas became visible for the first time in thirty years as air pollution fell. Baby sea turtles made it safely to the water on Brazilian beaches empty of sunbathers, joggers, and dogs. Wild boar and deer came back into car-free European cities.” As the authors demonstrate, some of those events were significant including “a colossal fall in the carbon dioxide emissions” driving climate change. While the coronavirus spring brought many human losses and great stress, nature gave each of us hope and comfort.

It is a remarkable little book. I highly recommend it but, even more so, I recommend that you begin keeping your own diary of how much joy our beloved birds bring to your life – or it could be the animals or the plants in your garden or a green area you visit. In years to come, it will be a treasure, I promise.

https://markavery.info/blog/

Many of us have never looked back after first watching our bird families on the streaming cams. By watching the daily lives of these families struggling to survive sometimes, we have learned much and it is hoped become more empathetic and prone to fight for a better environment for all of us.

Our first family up this morning are the Captiva Osprey family of Andy and Lena and the three Bobs. Lena was up at day break calling Andy to bring in a fish. She is incredibly loud and Andy could have heard her if he had been in Fort Myers!

I picked the image below not for its compositional beauty but because this morning for the first time, we can clearly see the difference in development between Big Bob and Little Bob. Look at the top of their heads. Little Bob, on the left, still has his soft light grey down. Big Bob has lost his. Soon his head will look like it has been dipped in a pot of black oil with a few copper flecks at the bottom. Big Bob is entering the ‘Reptilian Phase’.

While Lena wanted that fish before 07:00, it was, in fact, delivered at 08:14:39. It was a live Sheepshead.

Lena had a bit of a time with that fish – getting it opened and not flipping about on the kids. Big and Middle Bobs are right up there when she begins feeding. You will see that Middle Bob also has a greasy black Reptilian head like Big Bob. Little Bob is just waking up. Get up there Little Bob!

Little Bob is definitely our ‘Captiva Ervie’. It didn’t take him long to get the sleep out of his eyes and get up under Lena’s beak. Look at him stare at the fish. At least for today, we can easily tell Little from the other two if the trio are in a clump.

Lena was really hungry. She fed the kids for more than an hour and then finished off the fish and ate the tail at 09:49. All of the chicks were passed out in a food coma.

Andy returned hoping there would be some fish left just as Lena swallowed the fish tail! The chicks woke up and were thinking about a second feed. Too late! Big Bob did root around in the nest for scraps eating them as he found them. Wow. That is fantastic.

Lena is currently busy keeping the osplets cool by shading them. She is also hoping that Andy will ring another fish in!

Cornell Bird Lab put together a 15 minute video of Big Red and Arthur frantically working on their nest on the Cornell Campus this morning. It is much better than any still captures I could show you!

Squeezing some of the somber in with the joy, HH3, one of the Hilton Head Island Trust eaglets has died. HH4 is fighting for its life and hanging on by a thread. The test results to determine the cause are not ready yet. The adults are being monitored closely and the Birds of Prey Centre has brought in the Clemson University Vet School to help with the determinations as to cause.

There was a lovely kerfuffle at the NEFlorida Nest of Samson and Gabby this morning. It was fantastic, actually. Jasper (NE26) was eating all of the food. This has been the typical pattern for these two. This morning it was the same- NE27 is on the left with its head down and Jasper is at the beak getting all the food.

NE27 moves closer and does the old snatch and grab and horks all of the remaining prey! He was hungry and was tired of waiting. Way to go 27!

Jasper has been doing a lot of standing and wingersizing. She is definitely getting much more stable on those legs.

Gabby and Samson sure make beautiful babies. I just love the pantaloons on Jasper.

The more I watch the Dale Hollow nest the more I am loving this family. Obey comes in to check on River and feeds her. That reminds me of Blue 33 feeding Maya at the Rutland Osprey nest. Then River and Obey feed the chicks in tandem. The life experience of these two eagles, well into their 20s in age, really shows when dealing with the health and welfare of their chicks. Just wonderful. The third egg is 36 days old today and it is almost hatched!

Another tandem feeding this morning.

Continual aeration of the nest cup to keep it soft and bring oxygen in.

River feeding the twins.

Oh, just look at them. They are so cute, fluffy, and a little chubby. Perfect!

There are currently more than 3,044 persons watching and waiting for a pip at the nest of Jackie and Shadow in Big Bear Lake, California. The eggs were laid on January 22 and 25. That makes them 34 and 37 days old. The average time for pip is between 34 and 40 days so we are still right in the sweet spot for hatching. Good luck Jackie and Shadow! Your fans are cheering.

It is difficult to avoid the news. My heart goes out to any person caught in a conflict zone. It is difficult to avoid the war zones in Africa where our birds migrate to for the winter and now, as they begin to return to their homes in Latvia and Estonia, many have historically spent time eating and resting in the Ukraine. This is the map of Karl II’s family migration this past summer. Many of the other birds that migrate to Africa follow a similar route. Wildlife suffers irreparable harm, like ordinary citizens, in times of war.

Here is a detailed study of wildlife in conflict zones and the need for conservation. It is a good first read to understand the challenges that nature and wildlife undergo when there is war. I hope that you are able to open it.

https://esajournals.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/am-pdf/10.1002/fee.1433

I will close as we wait for a pip at Big Bear and the final hatching at Dale Hollow with a closeup of Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge. Dad spent considerable time on the ropes yesterday. I cannot help but imagine that he was hoping to catch up with Ervie and see how he is doing. You can certainly tell where Ervie gets his good looks from!

It has warmed up to a balmy -8 C. Serious spring weather and I am off to get more bird seed and go for a much needed walk. Please take care everyone. Thank you so much for joining me today.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Dale Hollow Bald Eagles, Captiva Ospreys and Window on Wildlife, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, Cornell Bird Lab, Friends of Big Bear Valley, Bald Eagles 101 FB, and the Latvian Fund for Nature Forum.