Middle takes the Fish Tail…and more news in Bird World

26 October 2022

Hi Everyone,

I hope that you had a really lovely afternoon.

It was not a particularly beautiful mid-afternoon on the Canadian Prairie. The forecast is for the temperatures to climb tomorrow and last for 3 or 4 days. Good days to go out and see the local wildlife. Still, today was not a disappointment. While waiting for three Canada Geese to cross a road, in front of them, down about 5 metres were three fauns crossing over, too. What a beautiful sight and, how nice it was that everyone slowed down to let them move at their own pace! At the local pond, there were about 200 Canada Geese on the soccer pitch with only a few in the water along with a lone male Wood Duck and a pair of Mallards.

Nearer to home, more than 35 Crows gathered in a nearby tree. It was only 1500, too early to be having a communal roost. Was there any Owl in the neighborhood that was bothering them?

This is a small corner of the tree. There were so many that flew in. Normally this time of year the Great Horned Owl comes by and all the Crows gather to usher it out of their territory.

The first of the Australian raptor families to have breakfast this morning appears to be the scrape box on the water tower at Charles Sturt University. Xavier came in with a nice bit of prey at 0726. The eyases were sound asleep until his arrival. Indigo ate first with Rubus joining in. Indigo then moved to the corner and Rubus continued eating. Where does he put it all? Then Diamond arrives. Xavier moves and eats some prey on the ledge. Diamond searches for leftovers. Meanwhile, Indigo is on the Cilla Stones wondering what in the world is going on?

It is a wet morning in Port Lincoln. Middle and Big are waiting for their breakfast fish to arrive.

A nice fish arrived and if you were watching that feeding, you might have been wishing that Big would get a few more bites! Now isn’t that a switch? Middle dominated the feeding from the onset to the ending. At one time, Middle turned away – possibly thinking Big would get grumpy if she didn’t get any fish! Then after Big got a couple of bites, Middle leaned back in and ate some more! Goodness. There was no beaking although I noticed Middle eyeing Big and wondering and one time Middle raised its neck up and looked directly at Big as if to dare her but…nothing happened. Big is docile. Meanwhile, Middle still does a lot of snatch and grab even if the feeding is directed at him. Still a little nervous. That is a good thing. It will bode him well for his future.

I love how Middle opens his beak wide letting Mum know he is ready!

Middle just keeps getting bites of fish and more fish and all the while he is sitting right next to Big. Cautious but never as fearful anymore.

Big gets the lion’s share of that fish. Big doesn’t seem to care.

Want to know what really showed how much this nest has changed? Big got the tail and was playing with it. Everyone thought it would keep Big busy for a bit but, no. Mum had other ideas. She took the tail, gave a bite of the fish flesh to Middle and then Middle took and horked the tail — right in front of Big. Oh, hos this nest has changed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Here is Big playing with the fish tail. Look. Middle is actually leaning down wanting to take it.

Mum took it from Big. She is pulling out the last of the fish flakes from it.

Middle has just gotten this fish tail and is beginning to hork it down. Ironically, Big didn’t even attempt to do that. Quite interesting.

Oh, how this nest is turned around. My money is on Middle. A true survivor. Maybe both Big and Middle will each get a sat-pak since Turnby Island will have no chicks. I think it would be very interesting to compare these two after they leave the nest.

At 0822 a freshly caught pigeon is brought to the 367 Collins Street scrape. What a chore Dad has trying to pluck with those four ravenous eyases waiting in line for food. I sure wouldn’t want that job. Does anyone remember how in 2020 little Dad was almost pushed off the ledge trying to feed those three big girls?!

Some eyases would rather run up and down and flap their wings than eat!

Oh, gosh. It sure was a good start to the day at all of the Australian nests. I am especially delighted because Middle is really coming into his own. What a joy to see that osplet hork down that fish tail today. Just little tears of happiness. The trauma is over on that nest. Please join us now and watch these two grow and fledge!

Thank you so much for being with me to check on the breakfast meals in Australia. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, and Charles Sturt Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross for their streaming cams where I took my screen capture.

Wednesday in Bird World

12 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

I hope that all of you had a good start to the week. It is cooler on the Canadian Prairies today with really cloudy skies and reports of possible showers starting at noon. The animals have really been busy in the garden gathering nuts and eating. I wonder if we will have another cold snap? The European Starlings have come to the tree in the back lane but, for some reason they have not come to the garden. Is it because I have no Butter Bark or Meal Worms out for them? I plan to go and get some later today. We will see if that is what they are looking for.

Of the four nests in Australia, the real concern is at Port Lincoln and I will be monitoring that nest closely.

The gold star for the week goes to the male at Melbourne who really kept the nest together when Mum was away for over 3 hours and the hot sun was beating down on the youngsters.

To tell the difference between Dad (below) and Mum, look at the breast area. Dad has hardly any lateral barring – with a full crop, his chest area looks like fluffy Victorian handmade lace. Isn’t he adorable? I have come to love this tiercel so much. He has really saved the lives of these four eyases, now known affectionately in my house as The Melbourne Four.

Making News:

The causeway to Captiva and Sanibel Islands is now restored and vehicles are going in to restore communication systems, power, etc. This is incredible news. Who would have imagined this would be completed in October! (Not sure what was done or if private vehicles can travel but the causeway is functioning). Connie and Clive have been seen and photographed and Lena has been heard. Everyone is just waiting to get the cameras back up and running.

There are lots of boots on the ground checking for SE30. She was found on the ground being harassed by Currawongs and Magpies yesterday. She flew and seemed to be fine and was seen near the River Roost with a parent. That should put a smile on all our faces!

The text and images come from the Eagle Cam FB page.

I have seen no further reports on SE29 who was found in a residential area and taken by WIRES to a vet where it was receiving fluids and pain killers.

Sharon Dunne (aka Lady Hawk) has completed her tribute video to Lillibet, the Royal Cam Albatross chick, daughter of OGK and YRK, for 2022. As always, get the tissues out. OGK was last seen the middle of May on camera. It has saddened everyone to think that this fabulous mate and father has perished. We will wait to see if he returns for breeding season in October 2023. He was injured in 2020 and was away from the nest for 40 days. What a joy it was when he returned. Miss Pippa Atawhai was so happy. They had a very close bond.

Sadly, the Albatross continue to be killed at an alarming rate by the long-line fishing trawlers. As anyone knows reading my blog, there are quite a number of easy fixes to stop these endangered seabirds from being slaughtered. They include setting the lines at night – how easy is that?

Nest News:

The Melbourne Four continue to be well fed. At least three persons noted that there were 9 separate feedings yesterday. They were a mixture of stashed prey (as at breakfast) followed by fresh kills when there was not enough meat on the pantry item. Raptors eat everything unlike us humans who are said to waste 40% of all food we purchase. All of those pigeons are turning into beautiful falcons! Mum had her lunch time break (from 11:19:45-13:01:37). Thanks ‘H’.

Nine feedings. If they can keep the intruders away from their penthouse scrape and maintain their territory in the non-breeding season, we will have years of watching this incredible couple raise their families. The male has really stepped up and has actively engaged with the eyases and from his protective mode the other day has a strong bond with the little ones.

Port Lincoln Ospreys keeps a running timestamp of happenings on the barge. Its listing yesterday pretty much sums up what is happening. The nest has gone off the rails. Little Bob had a few bites of prey yesterday. It is so hungry that it is trying to take food off Middle’s beak. Big Bob is unrelenting in her (it has to be a female) rampage. The osplets are 25, 24, and 21 days today. In general, nests like this ‘settle’ at 28 days just like they start on day ‘8’. We have a week to go. Even then, nothing is guaranteed. The oldest sibling on this nest has pushed its younger off the nest at 65 days and killed it. It is going to be a long week.

Mum was up having a snack and she tried to reach down and give Little Bob a bite of fish while Big was asleep. The time is 01:27:54. Little Bob is awake but Big Bob moves. Oh, if Little Bob would just slide up and open its beak, he would get a good feeding.

Middle Bob did eat some fish along with Mum. Sadly, Little Bob never woke up. Both Middle and Little will be hungry but Little really needs to have a good feed.

You can see Middle Bob’s crop. I just wanted to shake Little and get it awake so it could it. That feeding would have made all the difference. Mum has fish leftover for morning but will there be enough for Little to eat or only Big?

At the scrape box of Xavier and Diamond in Orange, Australia there were six feedings starting at 07:46:35 and ending at 18:48:40. Rubus is getting some bigger bites. Both of the eyases, Indigo and Rubus, are adorable.

Little Rubus had a nice big crop before bed!

From the Bookshelf:

Do you love Hen Harriers as much as I do? Those beautiful owl-faced low flying raptors that can be seen over the heather? There is a new book out by Ian Carter that looks very promising, The Hen Harrier’s Year. Here is the review:

https://raptorpersecutionuk.org/2022/10/12/book-review-the-hen-harriers-year-by-ian-carter-dan-powell/

So many factors play into a successful nest – lots of prey, healthy parents, no intruders…the list can be fairly long including Avian Flu. Despite all that has happened at Melbourne, that Peregrine Falcon nest is doing really well right now. That lovely tiercel is delivering fresh prey to Mum, the chicks are growing, and Dad has been able to help shield them from the sun during Mum’s noon day absences. Rubus is doing better at Orange. That wee one had a nice crop before bed last night. SE29 is in care and SE30 is being closely monitored. Thank you to all the boots on the ground near the Discovery Centre. The problem nest is Port Lincoln and this will not dissipate soon. We can only hope that Little gets one decent meal today.

Thank you for being with me. Take care everyone. I will be sending out breakfast news at the nests in the early evening. See you then!

Thank you to the following for their posts, their video tributes, and their streaming cams that make up my screen captures: Sharon Dunne (aka Lady Hawk), Port Lincoln Ospreys, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Sea Eagles FB, Raptor Persecution UK, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, and Charles Sturt Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross.

Early Sunday in Bird World

9 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone!

It looks like it is going to be another beautiful day on the Canadian Prairies. Nippy as it is only 7 degrees C at noon but, beautiful blue skies, a wee breeze, and no rain in sight. I hope that all of you have had a joyful weekend, have had some time to watch our beloved bird families as they face challenges of feeding two eyases at Orange or delayed food deliveries at Port Lincoln.

Making News:

The RSPB is urging everyone to let the wild grow. While they are focused on the UK, other agencies are doing this throughout the world as the number of insects decreases dramatically.

Did you know?

While Peregrine Falcon chicks are almost born blind, as juveniles they will be able to see a Starling a mile away (or .6 km). That is the reason that some at Cal Falcons Berkeley believe that Annie might have seen her precious Grinnell killed. With the difference in size of the two eyases at Orange and with the eyesight getting more focused daily by the little one, here is a brief article to help us understand how falcons actually see so well.

https://intobirds.com/eyes-of-a-peregrine-falcon/

I thought I would also include Kate St John’s article on Peregrine Falcon Development week by week. It is an excellent reference to what is happening as you watch the eyases at Melbourne and Orange grow and develop.

Nest News:

I know that you will be delighted to see that the adults at the Notre Dame Bald Eagle nest, home of Little Bit ND17, are beginning to rebuild their nest on the cam tree. Smile.

The names for the eyases of Diamond and Xavier at the Orange, Australian scrape are Indigo for the oldest and Rubus for the youngest. How lovely!

I haven’t been counting the bites that Rubus has gotten at each meal; I only do that with third hatch ospreys who are being badly beaked by older siblings or when watching a nest that could become unstable, such as Port Lincoln right now. I have, however, looked for a wee crop on the little one at Orange and haven’t seen one until yesterday. ‘A’ assures me that Diamond is getting better at feeding it and certainly the second feeding appeared to be better than the first with a wee crop on Rubus. Indigo is a great big sibling; she is just bigger and well her neck is longer. She will be getting pin feathers when, today, Rubus is really getting its eyes opened.

There were 5 feedings yesterday with the little one getting a bit more than the day prior. Those feedings were a Starling at 6:39:48; a pigeon at 8:42:33; 10:25:42; leftover pigeon at 12:58:11; another Starling feeding at 15:19:05 and 18: 31:26.

Here are some images of those feedings yesterday. Enjoy! Please note that the top image is the late feeding of the day.

I had actually hoped that Xavier would get a chance to feed the wee ones.

The first fish of the day did not come in until after 1300 at Port Lincoln. There had been some beaking as the three became hungrier and hungrier. It was also the first feeding where I have witnessed beaking. There was a reason. The lineup was Middle, Little, and Big at the farthest point from Mum’s beak. Middle and Little got quite a few big mouthfuls with Little Bob eating a piece of an organ that fell on the nest at 13:10:52. (Thanks, ‘A’). All of the chicks were ever so happy to see a fish that it looked like they were frantically gobbling the food. Big wasn’t getting any, though. He beaked the siblings and had them both afraid of being fed. S/he ate and then when s/he had their fill, the others ate some more. At the end of the feeding all had eaten well except for Mum who must have been ravished herself. Fighting continued at various times throughout the day with a few feeds. Big’s target was, for the most part Middle. Those two do not like each other at all and Big has always been trying to establish its dominance since they were 8 days old.

The chicks were absolutely ravenous when that 1307 fish arrived. I wonder what is keeping Dad from getting the fish to the nest early in the morning? The late deliveries are causing the nest to become unstable. Still, until yesterday, the feedings had not been impacted by food competition. Yesterday was a particularly brutal day of attacks by Big.

Little Bob eats the dropped piece of fish organ all by himself. It was a great horking just like Big did with the fish tail the day prior.

Despite the discord on the nest, all of the chicks managed to get their crops nicely filled at the feedings. Let us all hope that Dad will be able to overcome whatever it is that is stopping him from delivering fish early in the morning.

The four eyases at Melbourne are well fed. Mum spends a long time making sure that each is fed. In the last feeding of the day, you can barely see them as Mum has her back to the camera. There are a couple of glimpses. The eyases are beginning to look like raptors and you can clearly see their crops and the shiny skin on their chest where the feathers are worn off. Great work by Mum and Dad at Melbourne.

The Sydney Sea Eagle camera has been offline sometimes. SE30 spent the night on the nest with a parent above on the parent branch. No sign of SE29 yesterday although it could easily be on the nest tree out of view of the camera. That said, in days prior, SE29 was happy to jump down on the nest with the family so it does make me wonder.

The Bald Eagles in the US continue to visit their nests making a few nestorations or rebuilding an entire nest. They can do it! Let us all send warm wishes to Port Lincoln today for several fish early in the morning. That would go a long way to settling down Big and its fears about food supply. It would be wonderful if the cam would be operating at Sea Eagles – would love to see SE30 when it fledges or a visit from SE29. Meanwhile, we know that the Melbourne Four are going to begin to get itchy and start preening. We also know that they will have loads of prey. Dad is keeping the pantry full. I am especially looking forward to seeing Rubus with its eyes more focused today.

Thank you for joining me. Take care. Enjoy the rest of the weekend!

Thank you to the following for their postings and stream cams that made up my screen captures today: RSPB, Notre Dame Eagles FB, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam and Cilla Kinross, and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

QT is now Lillibet, Little Bob has a huge crop and other news in Bird World

6 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

Oh, goodness. One area of my City had its first snow last evening and the temperature for the rest of us is 1 degree C. (Think of 0 as 32 degrees F). We had our first heavy frost last night. This cold snap will surely put some of the birds that are arriving in our City on a path south!

The active nests remain in Australia while the Bald Eagles work on their nests for egg laying later in the year in the US. Rain is the issue at some of the nests. Melbourne received 3 inches of rain or 7.5 cm. Mum worked so hard to keep those eyases dry. Sadly, the Collins Street scrape will have more rain today – perhaps an inch – starting at around 0800. My weather report says that should end around 1300. It has really rained in Sydney and there are some areas that are flooding. Rain should begin in the Olympic Park where the Ironwood Tree nest of the Sea Eagles is located at around 1100 and then stop. Port Lincoln could be dry today! Yippee. It looks right now that Orange could be dry as well. We wait and see how the forecasts hold up BUT regardless, these amazing raptor families are doing well despite the heavy downpours that are occurring. That is simply wonderful.

There is word that Friends of Osprey – think Janet Foster, Ian Falkenburg, Fran Solly – from Port Lincoln and all those who donated or joined Friends of Osprey – have received four sat pack transmitters for this year. There will be one available for Port Lincoln and one each going to the three other nests should they have fledglings. Calypso has been seen numerous times and is flying well. She is the 2019 fledgling from PLO. Ervie is, of course, out and about being the man about town in Port Lincoln. This is excellent news. More platforms are planned for South Australia as well as the number of Ospreys grow in the area.

Friends of Ospreys has a new website and they are grateful for all donations. All funds go directly to the camera, etc at Port Lincoln, new platforms in the area, and those precious transmitters. This is their new site and it is packed with information. Not a member? Consider donating. Membership is $20 Australian.

Here is the latest news from the blog on our darling Ervie:

https://friendsofosprey.com.au/our-tracked-osprey/

An announcement came out of the Royal Albatross Centre on Taiaroa Head yesterday that a decision was made and accepted by all members that the Royal Cam Chick known as QT be officially named ‘Lillibet’ after Queen Elizabeth II.

I was worried about Little Bob at Port Lincoln yesterday. Big and Middle continue to go at one another and well, I will sound like a broken record but, it is a real blessing that they stop fighting and act nicely at the fish table. ‘A’ noticed yesterday that Little Bob’s lack of a long neck is hampering him if he is not at the right position during feeding. That said, he walked away with several nice size crops later yesterday when larger fish came to the nest.

In the image below, have a look at Middle Bob. Notice the dark woolier down that is now replacing that light grey coat of down the osplets had when they hatched. They will retain this thermal wooly layer to help them regulate their temperature. Feathers will begin to appear. You can already see the rusty-gold ones on their head and nape. These will be followed by the wing, tail, and body feathers until they get their full juvenile plumage. They are going to be very itchy and will spend much time preening.

Remember that the feathers are often called ‘blood feathers’. The feathers grow from blood quills which will disintegrate and fall off as the feathers grow.

Little Bob looks great with that big crop of his. You will notice that all three chicks are in the full reptilian phase including having ‘clown feet’.

We all wondered if Little Bob would be another Ervie. He certainly does his best to get up front and at the beak for feeding. The beaking between the two older siblings does send him into safe positions and it does appear that he is often afraid of them — and for good reason. He is still very small. Let the older more evenly matched siblings take their angst out on one another!

Dad continues to provide lots of prey for the Melbourne eyases and he does his best to feed them and keep them covered from the sun. It is difficult for him to brood them – even last year, Old Dad has a huge problem when it came to four chicks. They all seem to be doing well including the smallest one.

Mum has been notified that prey is delivered. She has flown off to have a break and eat.

Dad arrives and stays with the eyases til Mum returns.

Some chatting and bowing and Dad is off!

The older chicks can see well. It is hard to determine if the 4th has its eyes fully open and focused yet. Oh, how I wish there was a zoom on that camera!

The wee one at Orange is getting some food while Big Bob is growing like crazy. Everything is going well at Orange for Xavier and Diamond and we will all get to see how these two manage as parents of two this year instead of one.

There have been lots of feedings and Xavier has been able to feed and brood his family! He so loves being such an active part in everything instead of just providing prey.

SE30 has not fledged yet. The heavy rains in the forest should slow down any flying but, SE29 does not seem to be bothered flying in and out of the nest. SE29 is roosting elsewhere. SE30 is so excited to see its sibling when it flies in. They seem to have such a special bond with one another this year.

Fish have been coming to the nest and Lady often feeds SE30 and also SE29 should s/he show up on the nest. SE29 is often more interested in what is going around making one wonder if s/he is not also being fed elsewhere.

All of the nests are as quiet as they can be in the middle of the night in Australia. Despite the weather, all of the parents are able to feed and keep their little and not so little youngsters fed and warm (if needed).

Migration:

Checking on Karl II family for 5 October. Bonus continues to stay in the same area of Romania. Tracking shows that he flew a lot. This is a map of where he is and an image of the area.

Waba is still in Moldova at an area around Glodeni.

Waba seems to be enjoying a pond in the landscape. You can see by the blue dots that he visits there often. How wonderful he has found a source of fish and frogs.

Karl II has just astounded people with a 450 km flight. He is now in Turkey!

I see that there are no tracking reports yet for Kaia. On 4 October she was 31 km from the Mediterranean Sea. She is perhaps in areas where there is little satellite transmissions available.

Don’t forget that 8 October is Big Bird Day at Cornell Bird Lab. Go to their website to register for the bird count if you are not already a part of eBird. It is free. Here is the information to get you started:

https://ebird.org/news/october-big-day-2022

Thank you so much for joining me this morning. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and posts where I took my screen captures: Friends of Osprey, Cornell Bird Lab and NZ DOC, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, and Looduskalender Forum.

Early Tuesday in Bird World

4 October 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

It is late Monday evening in Canada, and it is 14 degrees C. as I begin thinking about Tuesday’s blog. The difference in time between Canada and Australia means that I am going to bed when all of the action starts. I am very grateful to those readers who send me time stamps and information about the nests in case I missed it! So thank you.

Tomorrow promises to be another beautiful fall day. I would love to send a break in the rain to the Mum and Dad at Port Lincoln so they could get those three osplets fed. Part of the big fish was returned to the nest after Dad removed it. ‘A’ reports that Middle appears to be the only one to have had anything to eat; the other two desperately wanted to stay warm and dry. Melbourne will be getting the rain tomorrow and it looks as if it could continue at Port Lincoln for most of the week Xavier and Diamond’s wee eyas will be quite dry in the covered scrape at Orange. Eyes are on the WBSE nest in the Sydney Olympic Park as it gets towards midnight in Canada. Will 30 fly while I am sleeping?


What does a Possum Merino beanie have to do with birds?

Well, it turns out that the beanie is sold at the Royal Albatross Centre on Taiaroa Head, New Zealand to fund the activities taking place on the headland. When you begin to think of donations or purchases, do keep the Royal Albatross in mind! Of course, like all the centres, they have more items for sale than beanies. That said, this beanie is the softest one I own and it is going to keep my head snug and warm when I am out birding in the winter here in Canada.

Everyone continues to be worried about Lena and Andy, their new platform and camera and, Lori Covert’s property. This is the latest announcement from Window to Wildlife with a satellite image of the nest on the left after Hurricane Ian and on the right, before the hurricane hit.

Wales is planning to increase areas of peatland to help biodiversity and to save species. After sitting in the grass near one of my city’s ponds this morning watching a Greater Yellowlegs, it is reassuring that countries are working hard to bring back conditions so that lovely shorebirds have a chance at survival.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2022/oct/03/wales-unveils-plans-to-triple-rate-of-peatland-restoration

There is more news about the cost of Avian Flu to birds around the world.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/oct/03/europe-and-uk-hit-by-unprecedented-number-of-bird-flu-cases-this-summer

There was a really informative programme (short) on the monitoring of the goshawks in Scotland. You can read about it or watch it if you have the BBC Player app.

Nest News:

The osplets were cold when Dad came with a fish at 16:23. Look at Little Bob all curled up. I so feel for the chicks when the weather is wet and miserble. They cannot yet regulate their temperature til they get all of that thermal down covering them from tip to talon.

If you are having trouble finding Little Bob, all of his soft down on the head is gone and he now looks like he dipped it into oil over the afternoon! I am so grateful that these three behave themselves when it is feeding time. This is a big, big help. Often the older ones do not allow the younger to eat at all until they are finished. Not the case here. Fantastic.

‘A’ tells me that Mum looked around for scraps for Little Bob after this feeding. He was still fish calling.

At Port Lincoln Dad came to the nest with a small much-needed fish at 19:14. It will be good for them to have fish in their tummies overnight. Gosh, those osplets lined up nicely but, each anxious for some fish. It looks like Little Bob certainly did get his share and did not get shut out by the big ones.

They all had nice little crops at the end of the feeding. Mum got right back on top of all of them – a great way to stop any dust ups and also it is cold and windy. These three need to stay super dry and warm.

So thankful Mum and the kids had some fish before bed. Mum had been screaming at Dad to get a fish on the nest. This one was not large but the osplets got fed. They would have liked more. It will be a long night and Mum is as hungry as the chicks. In fact, she is probably hungrier. Rain will start at 1100 on the 5th in Orange so hopefully, Dad will bring in a couple of nice big fish before then so that the family is stuffed to the gills as the rain drops fall later in the day.

It is, of course, the opposite problem at Orange right now but, they do not have any rain. Only Bob is enjoying the life of a single chick, nicely spoiled with plenty of food and no one to share it with but, Diamond. You might have noticed that Diamond does eat her share! Two extremely devoted parents sharing the life of their only chick. It is beautiful.

It does not appear that that either of the other two eggs have a pip. How long will Diamond continue to incubate them? Good question. Some will do so for 2-4 weeks. Many of you will remember the Dunrovin Osprey nest this summer where the eggs were incubated almost the entire summer with no hope of hatching. Shadow at Big Bear once incubated eggs for 60 days! They did not hatch. The little one will use the ‘eggies’ to prop on and, sometimes, in the case of the eagle nests anyway, the chicks actually incubate the eggs, too! Spirit did that with ‘eggie’ at Big Bear this year and Legacy at Northeast Florida became so attached to ‘eggie’ that people thought she would need a backpack so she could take the egg when she fledged. Samson, ultimately hid, it. It will be fun to watch to see what this little one does with those two extra egss.

Just look at the size of that little one!

Upside down roly-poly baby!

Here is a cute video with a good look at Xavier and Diamond’s chick.

There are reports coming out of Orange that Xavier and Diamond’s stash has been located. Many believed it was in the trees that you can see if you are watching the ledge cam but, it turns out the stash is on top of the tower. My goodness! Thanks, ‘A’ for that wonderful bit of news.

There is so much food coming to the 367 Collins Street scrape. This Dad keeps that pantry – at the opposite end of the ledge we think – full of nicely prepared pigeons. The four eyases are fed regularly and are growing like bad weeds. I so wish the camera was a little closer so you could see the change in their feathering. At least one of them is beginning to look like ‘bug eyed and thin necked’ as its plumage begins to change. There is nothing stopping this Dad from taking part in the lives of the eyases either. He has perfected feeding them but, because of his smaller size, still has some trouble getting them all under him for brooding.

The feedings at Collins Street generally last a full half hour. The top image is Mum brooding the eyases.

Mum has gone for a break and Dad is doing the feeding. He watched and learned.

Each eyas had a nice hard little crop after the long feeding.

Dad tries to brood them. Here comes Mum after she had a nice tea time and a bit of a rest.

Bye, Dad!

Mum feeding them again. They could hardly have been hungry but no one is going to go without on this nest. This couple have created perfect handovers and feedings. Just imagine how worried we were a fortnight ago? We can put that all aside now!

To my knowledge, SE30 still has not fledged. SE29 takes small flights and, so far, has been returning to the nest. I had been worried that SE29 was getting all of the fish deliveries as rewards for returning to the nest but, SE30 managed to get its talons on a delivery from Lady in the middle of the afternoon yesterday. SE29 flew in as 30 was trying to unzip the fish. No fights. No skirmishes. Totally civil.

It was really nice to see SE29 get that fish!

SE29 has just arrived on the nest. Look at Lady. She watches everything her eaglets do – she is looking at how well or not SE30 is self-feeding.

At one point, Dad flew in and both Lady and Dad were honking at the Currawongs. Yes, they want to keep them away from the nest and their eaglets. Sometimes I wish that the Sea Eagles actually ate the Pied Currawongs. Maybe then they would not bother this nest so much!

The chicks were more interested in the fish than the Curras.

Lady gave 30 plenty of time with the fish. SE29 did not come and take it over but wanted some fish and Lady has decided to feed both of them. I wonder how much longer she will get to enjoy her babies???

Thank you so much for being with me this morning. Everyone in Australia is sound asleep. Now the weather app has rain starting at Port Lincoln at 1000. It is going to rain all day at the Sea Eagles nest and it will start raining at 0900 in Melbourne. Horrid days for keeping warm and dry and — for staying in the nest and not flying. Diamond and chick will be fine. They are nicely covered! Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and posts that make up my screen captures: Royal Albatross FB Group NZ, Window to Wildlife, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

Late Monday news in Bird World

3 October 2022

Hello Everyone,

It is going to begin to be a rainy week across Australian raptor nests and this is going to impact the birds and their feeding as well as their flying!

There is welcome beginning to come out of Captiva. Lori Covert’s house (Captiva Ospreys and Eagles) survived but the brand new camera and pole with perch did not. Connie and Clive have been seen and are rebuilding their nest and, if they are safe, then I am going to presume that Lena most likely is too. She just has no nest!

In the Mailbox:

‘P’ would like to know when Peregrine Falcon eyases can see?

Peregrine Falcon eyases are normally born with their eyes closed. The eyas at Orange has its eyes open as do the ones at Collins Street but they will not be able to completely ‘focus’ until they are about a week old.

This will be a really short update. The weather at Port Lincoln is horrible. As predicted, Dad brought in a very large fish but the rain was coming down so hard that Mum did not risk feeding the osplets. She is really having to spread herself out. Oh, I see Mum shaking off the rain at 0909. Poor thing. This lot are going to be in a right grumpy mood once they get some more fish even if they went to bed with huge crops. Poor Mum is hungry, too.

The forecast shows that it is supposed to continue raining all day at Port Lincoln. Fingers crossed that Mum will find an opening so she can feed the kids – and herself. These Osprey mothers – all raptor mothers – work so hard in bad weather to protect the chicks.

The little one at Orange has been well fed this morning. Xavier brought the prey and then went and ‘talked to his baby’ before departing. Diamond was really enjoying whatever it was that Xavier brought. Yesterday someone said that he brought in a Honeyeater and she was particularly delighted.

The four at Collins Street are doing marvelous. The wee one had some bites this morning and all seem to be thriving with a pair of parents that are trying their best.

Both 29 and 30 slept on the nest last night.

SE29 took off on a flight about 0748. I wonder if SE30 will follow today?? 30 is really flapping those wings. It would not surprise me.

In migration news, our little Black Stork Mum, Kaia, is now on the edge of the Mediterranean! Bonus is in Romania and Karl II is still feeding at the Danube River in Ukraine. How amazing. Little Kaia has flown so much!

Thank you for joining for me for this quick check in with our Australian raptor families. Wish for Mum to be able to feed some fish to the osplets and for continued safe flying for the Sea Eagles! Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Ospreys, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, and 367 Collins Street by Mirvac.

Pips and Popping Crops…Early Thursday in Bird World

29 September 2022

Good Morning Everyone,

The news coming out of Sanibel/Captiva is not good. (see below) Our thoughts remain with all of those who were so heavily impacted by Hurricane Ian.

In Manitoba we continue to take in the full beauty of autumn with a temperature of 12 degrees C. And it seems that today, I will have hydro in the conservatory. Just in the nick of time as nighttime temperatures continue to drop near the freezing point. All of the Crows and Blue Jays continue to come to the garden and it will be a few weeks til we know whether they will winter here or leave.

In the Mailbox:

Lots of people are asking: Is there any news about Captiva Ospreys?

As you probably know Sanibel/Captiva took the direct hit of Hurricane Ian when it hit landfall at 155 mph. There is no communication between Captiva and some of the images coming out of Channel 8 news in Florida touch on the devastation. The individual who owns the property that the Captiva Bald Eagles and Ospreys have their nest is Lori Covert, a Canadian from Nova Scotia. Lori has reported that Captiva is under 12 feet of water and there is no communcations. It will be some time before things are restored because sections of the causeway are completely wiped out. Access would be by boat or helicopter.

The video clip is Sanibel.

Making News:

Catastropic damage to the number of birds and raptors due to the climate crisis.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/sep/28/nearly-half-worlds-bird-species-in-decline-as-destruction-of-avian-life-intensifies-aoe

Nest News:

There is nothing like a trio of ‘full to the brim’ osplets to set your mood to ‘excellent’. That big fish that Dad brought into Port Lincoln certainly started the osplets off on a good day, too. The cam operator obliged by giving us some fantastic close ups of the three. Look carefully at their plumage.

You can easily tell the three osplets apart. Big Bob has lost almost all of its down on the head and back. The back of its head is black on top with a copper bottom. Middle Bob is losing its down on the head and Little Bob is not yet started like the other two.

Soon Big Bob will look like its dinosaur relative. Poor thing. I feel sorry for it with all those itchy feathers.

Look closely. See the coppery colour plumage coming in below the black on Big Bob. You can also see the pin feathers coming on the wings and back.

Little Bob is still soft and sweet. He is beginning to remind me a bit of Ervie.

Those beautiful baby blues of the osplets will change to an amber and then yellow when they are adults. One exception that is know is Monty, the infamous Welsh Osprey, whose eyes remained amber.

In this image you get a clear look at Big Bob in the front and Middle Bob with its huge crop in the back. Little is in-between. Middle is one to keep an eye on – not sure it will not turn out to be the dominant bird. We wait to see.

They all had a good feed. There was another feeding and this time Little Bob got caught behind the two big ones. He tried to get up so that Mum would see his beak but to no avail. Little Bob will not starve. He has had lots of fish this morning and no doubt, he will have more!

The next feeding came at 1550 and Little Bob was right up front. He ate and ate and quickly went into a food coma. And then..there was another feed around 1830. It seems that Mum is keeping them absolutely packed with food until their crops could pop. Then she sits on them! That is a good way to stop any fighting nonsense.

The rumour has it that there are three pips at the Melbourne scrape box.

The Sea Eagles are still in the nest, hopping and flapping. They are big and beautiful and so very healthy. It seems like they just hatched yesterday and now in week 10 they are all grown up. They can fly. They just don’t know it yet.

We are now in Pip Watch for Diamond and Xavier. The time from pip to hatch varies from 24 hours to 72. Dr Cilla Kinross, the lead researcher at Orange for the falcons and their angel like Dr Sharpe is to the Channel Island Eagles, cleaned the camera yesterday at 1518. Diamond had a look of surprise in her eyes. She must be used to Cilla coming and going over the years because that look in the falcon’s eyes was all that happened.

All eyes are on Melbourne for a hatch today and for pips coming at Orange.

Thank you so much for joining me today. Please take care of yourselves. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Channel 8 news, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, and Charles Sturt Falcon Cam.

Early Sunday in Bird World

25 September 2022

Good Morning Everyone. Clear beautiful blue skies on the Canadian Prairies and a temperature of 13 degrees C. It is fantastic. The forecast calls for no rain this week which, is excellent. We are really into migration and it will be fantastic to bundle up a bit and watch the geese and ducks fly into the ponds this week without rain.

Last evening I went to a pond in an industrial area that I have started to frequent. The Canvasbacks had moved from the two smaller ponds to the big one and the Blue Heron was there as well along with a couple of Greater Yellow Legs, other ducks, a single Double-crested Cormorant, and some geese. The Blue Heron flew off to what I am now calling the secret pond to roost for the evening with the Great White Egret.

Canvasback
Great Blue Heron taking flight to the other pond.
Greater Yellowlegs swimming instead of punching at the mud.

Nest News:

It was a wet late feeding for the three osplets at Port Lincoln. Little Bob was absolutely soaked but, they all had full crops and did well even when the fish was flapping about. I always worry when chicks get soaked to the bone when they are just wee with only their soft natal down. They cannot regulate their own temperatures and, well, they can get a chill. Mum got right back on top of them and her body heat will keep them right toasty and they will dry off, thankfully.

Incubation continues at 367 Collins Street. According to the calendar, hatch watch starts on the 27th and that is tomorrow in Melbourne. It is also unclear which male is providing food. I did not see the ‘line’ that the second male has now being called M2. As a result, my identification went to M1 or the old male. I hope that there can be some good clear shots of that male once these chicks hatch so we know who is providing food and who is around or not. This female should get a golden award. She has had no help with incubating these eggs. I realize that this does not take a lot of energy but normally this part is shared with the male. She is hanging in there well for a bird believed to be a first time Mum.

Xavier and Diamond also continue their incubation. We have 5-6 days to go before we start to look for a pip in those eggs. Those cameras in that scrape at Orange will give you a ring side seat to see the hatch. At Collins Street, it will only be from a distance.

There are very interesting lessons being taught at the Sydney Sea Eagles – or at least, trying to be taught. These two are the most laid back sea eagles I have seen in years. Dad brought in a teaser of a piece of fish at 1715. Mum was on the nest and SE29 and SE30 stood there, looking at the fish, waiting for Mum to feed them with no move to steal it! Meanwhile, Lady is eating the fish…

That is a very good crop on one of the eaglets.

Notice how Mum waits before doing anything. Lady and Dad must be wondering what is up with these two…is it possible that we have two males this year? I wonder. They are so calm.

Making News:

Toxic chemical pollutants are killing our raptors – and if it happens in one country, you can be assured that the problematic toxins will be found elsewhere.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/sep/25/how-birds-of-prey-are-exposing-a-toxic-time-bomb

It is really incredible. Normally the fledglings of Big Red and Arthur are not seen after the end of August and here we are getting to the end of September and Suzanne Arnold Horning is still finding them for us on the Cornell Campus. This is just fantastic.

This is L4. What a magnificent hawk with her beautiful red feathered apron just like her Mum, Big Red.

The Bald Eagles continue to arrive at their nests in the US with sticks and a determination to rebuild the nest after last year’s clutch. You can almost check on any streaming cam and find that the couple have been there at some point working. Pa Berry and Missy have been busy for weeks now at Berry College! And Cody and his gang at the Kisatchie National Forest are getting some strange sounds made by eagles with their new ‘sound system’. We will jump out of our shoes when those eaglets start hatching- their cheeping will be so clear!

Listen to Louis pant when he lands on the nest:

It looks like it will be an interesting year. I urge you to add the KNF nest to your roster of eagles to watch — I know, you have too many already but, this is a great couple. Their third year together.

Thank you so much for joining me this morning as we wait for the hatches at the falcon nests in Australia. Right now everyone is sleeping! I hope that you have had a lovely weekend so far. Take care of yourself. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or posts/videos where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Ospreys, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Suzanne Arnold Horning, and Kistachie National Forest Eagle Cam.

Early Monday in Bird World

12 September 2022

A bird sitting on a tree is never afraid of the branch breaking, because its trust is not on the branch but on its own wings.

I had a lovely time at an industrial park in the city again Sunday. There was the Great Egrets, the Great Blue Heron, the fast little shorebirds, some ducks, some gulls, and a lot of Canada Geese. As the Egret was flying away, a couple stopped on their bicycles and chatted with me for a long time. After they made me feel rather good by saying they watched and noticed that I did not get near the birds but rather used that long lens on my camera so as not to frighten them. (I was 250 ft away). I was very humbled. I have seen people find out there is an owl and take their children running and practically land on the raptor or people using fishing poles with line and a mouse to try and get that perfect ‘shot’ of the owl flying directly at the camera person. To me, those are not ‘birders’ they are a special irritating ilk of photographer. At any rate the couple told me about another lake not that far from where we were standing and we talked about how the city planners required the area to keep 30% of the land for nature. It is certainly a beautiful green area in the middle of gravel pits!!!!!!! Yes, I am serious. I also got a tip about a cemetery with a Cooper’s Hawk family. That was so nice.

Decades ago I looked at the world through the eyes of a ‘human’. Oh, I can hear you laughing, I haven’t turned into a hawk yet!!!!!!! Or have I? At that time I considered golf courses and cemeteries as wastes of precious land — and that was a time when I was researching British cemeteries on the Indian subcontinent! Today, the view from my eyes is very different. As humans eat up all the land they can with bigger houses and ever expanding amounts of land, the golf courses and the cemeteries are places of refuge for the birds and the raptors. The geese fill the newer cemeteries that only allow flat markers while the Crows and hawks make their homes in the older ones with the mausoleums and large head stones. If I could increase the number of golf courses and cemeteries I would! And that is a 180 degree change in thinking. (Of course the golf courses should not be using rodenticide!)

From the Mailbox:

‘L’ writes: I don’t see the male at Melbourne bringing prey to the female. Do you know what is happening?”

What a really good question because we often see Xavier bring prey directly into the scrape box at Orange for Diamond. It seems, at Melbourne, that the male has hidey-holes on the other ledges and behind some of the architectural features of the building. He will have a stash of food there for the Mum and for her to feed the eyases. You might have seen Xavier put prey in the corner of the scrape at Orange. Rest assured, she is eating and the amount of time she spends incubating, she is not catching it but the little male is doing the hunting. He is also a very good hunter from previous years – if prey stocks remain good.

Just a note about Melbourne. ‘A’ wrote and asked what was on the nest fluttering around and then answered her question. A white plastic bag had made its way up to that scrape! That is so worrisome. The Mum got it off by tearing it but oh, we humans need to pick up after ourselves.

Making the News:

There is a webinar today on migration. I just saw this posting on the Cornell Chatters FB page. Apologies for not knowing about it earlier. I hope that they will post the webinar on YouTube after. Fingers crossed.

Six more Golden Eagles were released in the UK as part of a reintroduction programme.

The bird photographers of the year have been announced….It is so sad to see that some of the images of the urban birds are around human garbage but that is their reality. Indeed, many of the European storks – and those Adjutant Storks in India – spend their time in the landfills trying to find food. I was chatting with my granddaughter this afternoon about the need for dead but not diseased animals to be taken to a specific spot for all the birds that eat carrion. It would be a tremendous help. Instead of running big incinerators using energy and pouring ash into the air, the animals like Bald Eagles, Crows, and Vultures would have food.

A detail of Kerry Wu’s award winning image of a Barred Owl.

The winners are shown in this article of The Guardian:

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/gallery/2022/sep/09/bird-photographer-of-the-year-2022-winning-pictures

This beautiful Golden Eagle gets a second chance at life because of the Audubon Centre and now she has a new home!

Nest News:

Thanks to ‘J’ I was able to go and see the Magpies attacking the two little sea eaglets on the streaming cam. Thank you ‘J’.

A number of years ago I was mortified when I saw the Magpies and Currawongs swooping at the little sea eaglets. My heart sank to my feet and my palms got sweaty. It is a difficult thing to watch for the very first time… maybe even the second. Far more enjoyable are the visits of the Rainbow Lorikeets! I did not see Lady or Dad to the rescue today…another learning experience for these two eaglets who are now in their 8th week. Soon they will have to contend with these aggressive little birds alone – even without a sibling – so best they get used to them and honk those wonderful horns of theirs.

The Sea Eaglets will be the top dogs wherever they take up residence like Lady and Dad are in the Sydney Olympic Forest. For the remainder of their lives, the smaller birds will be annoying – sometimes even downright dangerous – because they have nests with babies, too and they don’t want the big Apex Predators around them. We see it with the Mockingbirds attacking Big Red all the time. The older the eaglets get the more they will ignore the smaller birds but, for now, this is good training. I caught it on video for you.

The Sea Eaglets were fed early. You sure miss those hourly feedings when Lady was giving those wee ones little bites. Now it is so long between meals.

The adults were in the nest tree looking about for pesky intruders around mid-day.

Cornell has been busy posting images of L4 since her release from care as well as other members of the family including L2. It is so good to see the four of them – Big Red, Arthur, L2 and L4 out in the wild doing what hawks do. Cornell has said that it is working to improve the areas where the hawks might get injured – let us hope they get to it fast!

The two posts below are from Cornell’s Twitter feed.

They were not together long-Idris and Padarn. The moment reminded me of Iris and Louis on the Hellgate Canyon Osprey platform in Missoula, Montana a week plus ago. There was Idris with his daughter, Padarn, on the Dyfi nest in Wales. Idris wasn’t looking straight at the camera but Padarn was – and it gave me that same feeling of ‘goodbye’ like that eerie image of Iris and Louis. Stunning image of father and daughter – Padarn looks even more like Mrs G with ‘that look’.

BTW. Some of you will remember a question about which gender migrates first. I had used the Dyfi statistics which were colour-coded. My good source tells me that the first hatch, Pedran (2022), who was identified as a female at the time of ringing, is now deemed to be a male by Dyfi. Is this from mouth swabs? or because Pedran migrated so much earlier than Paith and well…Padarn is still with us, bless her heart. She is one healthy and robust Osprey who is well taken care of by Dad. Just look at those legs – short and stout.

Blue 497 is still at Glaslyn with Aran. It started raining last night and looks a little miserable this morning, too!

Something has caused Xavier and Diamond to leave the eggs and check on their territory at Orange.

There was a lot of alarming and looking at the sky but nothing could be seen on the ledge or tower cams. There is work, however, going on somewhere near the tower. You can hear the machinery in the background.

It was, however a great day for Xavier to have some time with the eggs. He had a two hour incubation!!!!!!!! Couldn’t hardly believe it.

Alden and Annie have been bonding and doing their little kisses in the scrape box today. Oh, isn’t it fantastic to get to see them together outside of breeding season?!

At the Port Lincoln Osprey barge, Mum had had enough of that pesky piece of pine bark and was moving it. While she did, we got a good glimpse at those precious eggs that are due to hatch at the end of the week. Can you believe it? We are finally getting there!!!!!!!

It could be my imagination but things seem to be settling down a bit at the Melbourne Collins Street scrape. The new Mum does not give Dad a lot of incubation time which he has really enjoyed in previous years. So far today, though – and it is only mid-day (1335), the eggs have not been left for long, long periods of time (like hours).

What a gorgeous view!

Migration News:

It appears that Sarafina is on her journey. It is unclear if Louis has left Loch Arkaig. He might well be eating and resting up after feeding his daughter well into September!

Checking on Karl II’s Black Stork family. Waba remains in Ukraine in an area around Manachyn.

He is fishing along the river bank.

Bonus remains in Belarus around the Priyapat River.

There is no transmission signal for Karl II. In the Kherzon region some of the villages are only now getting their cell service restored. No transmission that I can see for Kaia either.

From the Bookshelf:

Jonathan Elphick is no stranger to birds. Just Goggle his name and you will find a long list of titles by this wildlife writer and ornithologist. Birds. A Complete Guide to their Biology and Behaviour is the first title of his on my bookshelf and what a great addition it is. The book begins with a look at birds and their relationship to dinosaurs and moves quickly to bird anatomy. Anything and everything you could possible ever want to know is in this detailed chapter. The chapter on ‘flight’ was one of my favourites with its intricate drawings of the wings with the feathers labelled as to their correct names. How different birds fly, their speed, discussions on wing loading are all there along with hovering and energy saving flight. Further chapters examine food and feeding, birds as a group or society, breeding, where birds live and migration. It is, in effect, an excellent reference book filled to the brim with the most beautiful imagery. I was particularly interested in the discussion on birds and humans and was not disappointed. Elphick starts with the earliest assaults by us on birds and continues to the problems of today including human overpopulation and climate change. There are also surprises – I learned a myriad of things from each page. We listen to the duets by the White-bellied Sea Eagles at Sydney but did you know that there are actually 44 distinct bird families that sing duets? The Eastern Whipbird and the Common Swift are two. There is an excellent index and a good bibliography. Highly recommended if you are looking for a comprehensive book on all aspects of our feathered friends — including some of their quirky behaviours.

From the Archives:

Everyone fell in love with me. I have the loudest voice of any eyas! I kept the researcher fully fit walking up the stairs to keep putting me back in my scrape box. Who am I? Who are my parents? and where is my scrape box?

I have seen no recent updates on Victor or tracking information on Ervie.

Thank you so much for being with me today. Take care! See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their tweets, posts, and streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Cornell Hawk Cam Chatters, The Guardian, Audubon Centre for Birds of Prey, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Cornell Hawks, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Cal Falcons, Port Lincoln Ospreys, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, and Looduskalender.


I am Izzi. My parents are Xavier and Diamond and I hatched in 2020. First I fludged – fell over the edge when I was sleeping. Cilla Kinross climbed the 170 stairs to put me back in my scrape. Then I fledged but hit a window and went to rehab and was taken back up the 170 stairs by Cilla Kinross. Finally, I fledged! But Mum and Dad couldn’t get rid of me. Finally as the 2021 season approached, Diamond blocked my way into the scrape which is on the water tower at Charles Sturt University in Orange, Australia. Aren’t I the cutest little falcon you have ever seen?

A new supporter for the Albatross? has Mrs G left for migration…early Friday in Bird World

9 September 2022

Thursday was truly a bit of an uneventful day mostly spent waiting on a parcel delivery that came much, much later than anticipated! It was a good time to just watch the garden to see what was happening. For Dyson fans, she is back to her normal self since having the babies. She was flying off branches today, landing on the deck, grabbing peanuts and running so fast I could not catch her on camera! Two of the Crows alerted me to the presence of the cat under the bird feeders. My goodness, they are quite remarkable and were given ‘extra treats’ – cheesy sausages – for their good work in protecting the rabbit and the songbirds. It has also been quite in Bird World, pretty much. These images have been shot quickly through a screen!

The Crows on the line cawing very loudly and looking at the cat below the feeders.
The culprit – a well fed pet!

In the Mailbox:

A couple of days ago, ‘B’ asked which gender migrated earlier – males or females? I have spent time asking Osprey experts and have uncovered some preliminary data using the Dyfi charts. It seems that gender is always discussed with regard to fledging but is only a footnote when it comes to migration. With a very small sample, males are 75% more likely to migrate first than females 90 days and under.

The chart below is of the Dyfi chicks. So those who fledged at 90 days, 75% more males than females. As you can see the older the chicks get, there are more females that take longer in the nest to migrate after fledging. I cannot assume that this is the same for other nests but, for now, this is the clearest data chart I have found for us to interpret. I will be looking for others in the days to come.

‘L’ wrote to me about the new climate bill in the US. The Audubon Society had posted an article on the 12 ways that it will help birds – and other wildlife. Thanks for sending me that article, ‘L’. I am certain others will find it of interest, too.

Making News:

The Osprey lost at sea that hitched a ride on a boat is making news in Scotland.

https://www.scottishdailyexpress.co.uk/news/uk-news/boaty-mcboatface-rescue-osprey-lost-27938175

Mississippi Power is putting up some Osprey Poles. How wonderful! Maybe they will place some more nests and other utility companies will follow suit. Sitting on the Canadian Prairies it is easy to imagine the number of Ospreys that might choose to winter along the Gulf or in the Gulf States.

The Royal Albatross and the campaign to change the long line fish trawling practices may have a new champion in King Charles III.

Nest News:

Based on their size and weight, the wildlife rehabber believes that Big Red and Arthur’s L3 and L4 are both female! Nice. That explains a lot about L4’s behaviour in the nest — not afraid of anything, just barreling over the others to get to the beak. Is it possible they were all females?

L4

At the Osprey nest of Aran and Mrs G in the Glaslyn Valley in Wales, all three of this years fledglings have joined the 100 Club. This means that they have been on the nest for over 100 days and counting before migrating. Today they are 106, 105, and 102 days old! Aran might be wondering if everyone has decided to over winter.

This was early Thursday morning. Mrs G is in the second photo. It was the last seen of her. The time was 08:58. If she isn’t hiding down in the Oaks or trying to fool us, Mrs G has now left for her migration. She took a piece of fish off one of the fledglings just to top up her tank! If you have left Mrs G, safe travels, lots of fish, and return again next spring – you remain the oldest osprey in the UK and what a lovely group of offspring this year!

Idris continues to deliver fish to Padarn. It looks like some are very happy to stay in Wales!

Padarn this morning. She is still in Wales!

Louis still has Sarafina fish calling!

The Melbourne scrape seems to be getting a lot of attention lately. First up, the building number is 367 Collins Street. There are now 36.7 members of the FB group. That is an incredible number of supporters. Here is the announcement:

There has been much concern over the incubation time and whether or not there was another male falcon present at the building. Victor Hurley, the chief researcher of the nest for the Victorian Peregrine Falcon Research group posted this today on FB:

The images that I have taken today appear to me to be the same male that has been at this nest since I began watching some years ago. Dad is relieving Mum so she can have a break this morning.

Later the couple were having a conversation.

In Orange, there is heavy rain falling. Diamond watches it from inside the scrape. Xavier has been in and out helping with incubation duties. I hope he is somewhere trying to stay dry.

At the Sea Eagles nest, it was chilly and the two eaglets wanted nothing more than to be able to shrink so all of them would fit under Mum.

Dad brought a little fish in for their breakfast so that Lady could feed the two.

Both SE29 and SE30 are really getting much more steady on their feet and they are spending more time walking on top of this twig nest. That surely cannot be easy!

At the Port Lincoln Osprey barge, Mum has been hungry. Dad has been known to bring in a fish, eat a large portion of it before bringing her a piece. Today he brought her a really nice sized larger fish for her tea. How wonderful. Thank you, Dad! Mum was really excited for that lovely dinner.

Looks like Alden’s funny quirks have rubbed off on Annie who was caught ‘loafing’ on the ledge of The Campanile on Thursday.

Oh, how I love Samson. He was at the NE Florida Bald Eagle nest today waiting for his mate, Gabby, to arrive from her migration. Like Richmond, the SF Bay Osprey, Samson stays in the area of the nest and does not migrate. Both Rosie (Richmond’s mate) and Gabby, do. Gabby is usually home by the 12th of September.

Migration News:

There is information from Bonus, Jan and Janika’s Black Storklet that was fostered by Kaia and Karl II. Bonus remains in Belarus near the Pripyat River where he has been feeding for some time.

Kaia remains in the general vicinity she has been in Ukraine.

Karl II is still believed to be in the area of Kherzov. We now know that the telecommunications in the area is down. Storks should, unless shelled by accident, wish to stay away form the people and there are the many nature reserves in this area where Karl II stayed for long periods in previous years. I am trying to remain positive for him!

Waba has had trouble with the tracker so there is no conclusive report.

From the archive:

Do you know which nest this was? The year is 2020. The older sibling supported the younger. The Magpie helped ‘this eaglet’ when the Pied Curra were attacking? The third image is the last one at the nest.

Thank you so much for being with me on this very quiet Friday in Bird World. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their posts, videos, tweets, and streaming cams that make up my screen captures: Dfyi Ospreys, Cornell Bird Lab, The Scottish Daily Express, Mississippi Power, Royal Cam Albatross Group NZ, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, 367 Collins Street by Mirvac, Charles Sturt falcon Cam, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Port Lincoln Ospreys, Cal Falcons, NEFL-AEF, and Looduskalender.

From the Archive Answer: That is SE25 supporting SE26 after its little leg was broken. Lady is feeding both of them. SE26 struggled in the forest after fledging. After 6 days returned to the nest massively hungry and exhausted. Lady and Dad fed SE26. When 26 had recuperated, she flew to the camera branch where she was attacked by the Pied Currawong. A Magpie came to help 26. That is the last picture we have of SE26 in the forest. She flew out, chased by Curra, during the time of a storm and landed on the balcony of a 22nd floor condo some 1.5 km away in Horn Bush. SE26 was taken into care and euthanized, sadly. It was believed the damage to her leg would cause extensive pain and could not be repaired properly. It was a very, very sad day. SE26 was inspirational to all you watched her struggles to ‘be an eagle’…she flew. That is one consolation. What we learned was that the Pied Currawong are unrelenting in chasing the Sea Eagles out of the forest. This has caused extensive difficulties which have been noted in recent years with SE27 going in and out of care and requiring training to fly and hunt prey.