Late Monday news in Bird World

8 August 2022

The condolences continue to pour into Poole Harbour for the loss of 5H2 due to the goshawk attack and to Loch Garten’s 1C1 to unknown causes. It is worse when the osplets are older and flying. The number of Osprey in the UK is very small compared to North America and the loss of these two chicks on significant nests took its toll today. Last year the osplets died due to weather issues when they were so little. This year we lost a wee one at Llyn Brenig, the third hatch at Loch Arkaig when its foot caught and it could not get under Mum during the worst weather. Siblicide at Loch of the Lowes. It is hard either way but raising chicks to fledge and then losing them is just tragic.

I have had many letters asking if Loch Garten is doing a post-mortem. Yes, they are! The cameras will be turned off during the removal of the chick and then turned back on. We have seen three ‘mysterious’ deaths this year on streaming cams of Ospreys -Big at Captiva, Molate at SF Bay, and now 1C1 at Loch Garten. I included Big because there was no confirmation of why she died. Molate was visibly unwell for a few days, just like 1C1. Is it the same? (It is unclear to me as to whether GG Audubon ever removed Molate’s body from the grid as fledglings Brooks and the Visitor continue to come to the nest. Speculation is a lung infection. I do recall Molate also had trouble breathing. Curious.

Elsewhere in Bird World, life seems reasonably stable but everything can change in a few seconds – without any warning – as was the case of H52.

The great experiment by Urmas and Dr Madis to save the Black storklets of Jan and Janika would have been significant if not for the loss of all the chicks on Eedi’s nest due to predation (possibly another Goshawk attack). There is one survivor, Bonus. Bonus is doing tremendously well. He is 78 days old today. Karl II and Kaia have found the filled fish baskets and the chicks are so full that when Karl II comes in with a delivery the four of them cannot eat all the fish. Yes, it is true!

Fledging could come at any time. Bonus is overdue but because of his delayed development due to stress and lack of food, he will fly once he is ready, not by a calendar. Kaia often leaves by 11 August so we are watching to see what will happen this year.

It is mostly quiet. Many of us are watching the females in the UK to spot on leaves when. Maya is still at Manton Bay in Rutland.

I could not get a good look at her face but this is that amazing female who raised three big girls with Blue 33 this year! She is the mother of Telyn at Dyfi.

1H3 has enjoyed a nice fish delivery today.

1H1 is screaming to goodness for Mum or Dad to get a fish on the nest for her!!!!!!!!! What a beauty.

All of the fledglings could catch their own fish. The parents do not have to teach them – 60 million years is hardwired into their DNA. The fledglings just do not know that they can do it! During migration they will have to begin to fiend for themselves.

These females are such characters. Blue 33 could hear his girl across the lake! “I want a fish now!” Blue 33 is one of my great loves as far as ospreys go. He is 11 years old this year and is ending his 9th breeding season. He has raised two sets of four osplets to fledge with Maya…They are a super couple in a realm of their own.

Remember that flapping fish that we thought had killed at least one of the little ones – they survived. All three nice big girls!

It is hot at the Dyfi nest in Wales of Idris and Telyn. Tomorrow it will be 30 C. Telyn is still here. She has been chasing off an intruder which appears to be annoying her to no end. I do not blame her. Now is not the time for an injury. Telyn will leave Wales and fly to The Gambia. According to Chris Woods who travels to The Gambia in the winter, he knows precisely where her favourite perch is. Brilliant. It is always reassuring to know she has arrived safely.

Just look at all the cameras.

Relaxing down by the Dyfi River.

Emyr Evans has posted a very interesting blog testing different hypotheses about the unringed visitor to the Dyfi Nest. It has some information about fledging ages and the start of migration. Thanks EE – we love the Dyfi Data!

https://www.dyfiospreyproject.com/blog/emyr-mwt/extremely-rare-visitor-unringed-fledgling

I see no word that Blue NC0 has left the Loch of the Lowes either. Both chicks have been flying for at least 3 weeks and they are doing some fancy landings and take offs from the nest. I was able to catch them on the nest today – one with a fish and the other screaming to Laddie LM12 (Dad) to bring another pronto! These males sure get a work out at the end of the season. No wonder their legs are so strong and muscular.

These two look to be in brilliant shape!

Mrs G is still here. She is on the perch to the left while Aran is on the one at the right.

Aran and Mrs G looking out on their territory from the Glaslyn nest. Aran is in the back, Mrs G, the oldest osprey in the UK, is in the front.

Fledgling eating a fish on the Glaslyn nest while Mrs G is at the nest.

I cannot read the Darvic rings but this looks like a different fledgling enjoying a meal earlier in the day.

I was also able to catch Seren and one of the chicks on the Llyn Clywedog nest in Wales. It is so rare to see chicks on the nest that I feel fortunate checking all of the nests and finding at least one today.

Dorcha and the two fledgling chicks were on Loch Arkaig! I did not see Louis but he is about bringing in fish.

This one desperately wants a fish!

They do not know that they are getting ready for the most challenging two years of their lives. If they live to get to the South of England or parts thereabouts, they will feed up. There are scores of birds that will be at Poole Harbour making their way to their winter homes. How many of them will survive? When we hear averages, it must be the entire raptor family, not just specific species. We know that the UK birds will either land on the Iberian Peninsula and winter or they will continue to Africa and winter in The Gambia and Senegal. I hope to get some figures for Ospreys only. It will be easy to get UK figures of 2 year survival – or thereabouts – as from the Dyfi note – all known birds have Darvic Rings except for a few nests in Scotland and maybe one hiding in Montgomeryshire in Wales. The figure is going to be low and it could provide us with more insights. Less than 1 in 3 I suspect.

Remember – send me the stories you remember about migration. I am particularly interested in the huge challenges these birds face. Get it to me by Thursday night. Thanks!

I peeked in at the Osoyoos and Fortis Exshaw nest briefly throughout the day. The heat dome is definitely hitting BC again but Soo and Olsen seem to be weathering it fine. I have also checked on Titi who has been hovering but has not fledged. Titi is in a very dangerous position if he cannot fly – he is literally the sitting osprey for that Goshawk that continues to fly around the nest! I wonder why he is not moving? We saw Nuppu try to beak her youngest to fly. Titi has no mother, only a sibling and Dad and he needs to work those wings and get out of there.

The latest updates on Victor came on 3 August. If you missed it, here it is. There has been nothing since. We must assume that Victor is continuing to progress. Treatments for heavy lead toxicity take a long time.

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

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or posts where I took my screen captures: Finnish Osprey Foundation, The Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Dyfi Osprey Project, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, CarnyXWild, LRWT, Friends of Loch of the Lowes and the Wildlife Trust.

Goshawk attacks Poole Harbour osprey fledgling

5 August 2022

CJ7and Blue 022with 5H1 and 5H2 on 23 July 2022

Goshawks seem to wait until the osplets have nearly fledged or fledged to attack the nest. We saw this at nest #4 when Nuppu’s osplet who had yet to fledge was knocked off the nest and is presumed to be predated. We saw Goshawk attacks last year ending in the death of some adult ospreys and older chicks.

CJ7 and Blue 022 made history in Poole Harbour first by laying eggs, then hatching, and then fledgling two beautiful Ospreys – 5H1 and 5H2. Everything seemed to be going well.

Then the Goshawk attacked the nest a few minutes ago. CJ7 was perched on a nearby tree and flew in to engage the hawk intend on taking one of her chicks who was feeding on the nest. The fate of the chick, 5H2, remains unknown as I write this as does the fate of CJ7. It appears – in slomotion – that CJ7 had her talon in the goshawk and the hawk had its talon in 5H2. The nest is empty. It is hoped that they were able to get free and fly away safely.

Here is the amount of time it took to disrupt this nest by the predator. You absolutely can’t blink it is that quick. It began at 20:12:40.

Someone on chat asked who would win the fight. Unfortunately the Ospreys talons are not made for fighting but I am certain -since CJ7 waited so long to have a family -that she will fight viscously. We wait and hope.

Birds of Pool Harbour are on site and checking the situation. It is dark and there is not word on the Ospreys.


In other news, ‘H’ sent me a note that the camera at the Boathouse Ospreys is now working again. Thanks ‘H’.