Dad delivers two fish to his Ervie

I have to admit that I have been feeling rather sad for Ervie. He was so excited – and proud -to bring his catch to the nest. Then for it to turn out to be a toadfish, something that he cannot eat (or did not eat – he did eat the puffer fish!), had to be a real disappointment.

That fish remains on the nest and every once in awhile Ervie takes a look at it. You can see the fish to the right of Ervie. It also sticks to Ervie’s feet when he jumps around the nest trying to get a delivery from dad. I wonder why he doesn’t just shove it into the side of the nest?

Yesterday Dad brought in two fish meals for Ervie. Those times were 12:55:43 and 17:56:51.

Here is Dad delivering the first lunch for his lad.

Ervie is really lucky that Dad continues to feed him! Ervie reminds me of Izzi, the cutest peregrine falcon, at the scrape in Orange. Izzi did eventually leave the area but not until it was nearly time for his mother, Diamond, to lay her eggs for 2021. Some thought Izzi would have to stay and help take care for his siblings! It has happened in the UK.

It appears as long as there is a chick crying in the nest, no matter how big and old, Dad will continue to provide some food.

Ervie is really mantling his precious fish. He gives Dad a bit of a nudge to get him off the nest!

Dad is amazing. Ervie is really going to enjoy that fish.

Ervie slept in the nest last evening. I wish the camera could give us a view of the nest and Dad’s shed area. Is Dad not there? Is that why Ervie is sleeping on the nest? I have more questions than I will ever get answers.

In other Bird World News: Thunder has now laid her third egg at the West End Bald Eagle on Catalina nest with Akecheta. Bald Eagles Connie and Clive, realizing that their egg was not fertile, each helped bury it in the nest at Captiva. Today they are bringing in new soft materials covering the egg and the nest area. Does this mean they are going to attempt a second season?

There is a storm raging at the NEFlorida nest of Gabby and Samson. Gabby and the nest are almost at the point of being so deluged that she might not be able to keep the chicks dry. The other issue is that the temperature at the nest is 9 degrees C (49 F) and there is a wind advisory. Gusts up to 40 mph will ravage the area until Monday afternoon. The rain should stop by early evening. My heart goes out to Gabby.

Pa Berry has the nest stocked and while it is a little breezy, all seems well at the nest with Missy and little B15 at Mt Berry, Georgia.

Kincaid is growing and doing well. Louis doesn’t have quite the pile of fish he had on the nest. Thinking about those 10 fish and Coots reminds me. There was a question the other day and I am certain we have all thought about this. How well can Bald Eagles smell? That nest of Anna and Louis’s in the Kisatchie National Forest had to just reek.

Eagles have high temporal resolution – keen eyesight – and they rely more on their vision than smell. Turkey Vultures and others who rely on Carrion as a food source do have a developed sense of smell that helps them find their food. Eagles have functional olfactory glands meaning that they can smell but the numbers of those glands is relatively small in comparison to mammals. I will post a link to an article on Olfaction in Raptors at the end of this blog if you want to access it.

Kincaid is sitting up nice and straight. He is not yet walking around the nest but he sure manages to move relatively quickly, regardless. Anna keeps him full to the brim, normally!

There is an interesting story coming out of Alexandria, West Virginia Audubon Society about an Osprey that caught a crow. Have a read:

https://www.audubonva.org/news/osprey-killing-a-crow-in-alexandria-va?fbclid=IwAR143JSPR4PsbBCq5J-umVH_aML7MF-JpL_EAUcGTnFVbevRsK8zucOx8RU

Here is the article published by Oxford University’s Zoological Journal on Olfactory Glands in Raptors:

https://academic.oup.com/zoolinnean/article/189/3/713/5601241

It is -18 with a bright sky on the Canadian Prairies. I am hoping to go out and check on some birds this afternoon for awhile. February is always the month for ‘cabin fever’ and this year is no exception! I do have some images of our dear Dyson yesterday in the garden. He is sure enjoying that hard suet cylinder!

He managed to share it with the European Starlings yesterday. Sometimes I see him chasing them about the Lilac Bushes hoping that he will get them to move so he can have some seed.

For some reason Dyson likes to eat this hard seed cylinder or sit in the open square feeder and eat just Black Oil Seed. I cannot get him interested in anything else.

Dyson becomes a bit like an acrobat hanging on to that small branch of the tree and the wires of the suet holder.

He sure does bring me a lot of joy!

Little Red was out yesterday, too. When the temperatures dropped from -32 to -15, the squirrels became much more active. It was nice to see them all! Reassuring.

Thank you so much for joining me. I hope that you are all well. Stay safe! See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Berry College Bald Eagles, KNF Bald Eagles, and NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF.

First egg at Achieva Osprey and other Bird World News

Jack and Diane are the Ospreys at the Achieva Credit Union Nest in St Petersburg, Florida. Off and on there have been other couples coming and going when they were not on the nest. This morning, however, that is all changing. Diane laid the first egg of the 2022 season around 23:40 on 1 February! Congratulations Achieva!

Diane, I really hope that you stop at two this year! Despite Tiny Tot Tumbles surviving and then thriving last year.

Jack brought Diane a nice fish this morning and took his turn incubating the egg so she could eat and have a bit of a break. Good one, Jack.

There is something going on at the NCTC nest. Where is Bella? Smitty was seen mating on the nest with the intruder female this morning! There she is on the right with the brown feathers in her tail. She is quite easy to identify. It was 08:06.

Deb Stecyk caught it on video:

Ervie likes it down in Dad’s cave. He is still there but Dad is gone!

Anna and Louis’s baby at the KNF nest is 21 days old today. If you look carefully you can see the shafts starting on the wing tips for the flight feathers. The thermal down is really coming in nicely.

Typically, this eaglet has a huge crop as it sits in front of Anna.

I have not seen the final three names for voting posted. Cody has been in Texas until today and I am assuming that him and Steve will meet, figure out the three that were mentioned most often, and then set up the final public voting.

It’s that stage. Thermal down and clown feet and looking like Hulk. White dandelions on the head.

The little eaglet – B15- at Berry College is getting its thermal down, too. It was caught preening this morning! Did you know that the pin or blood feathers will grow where the natal down shafts were? So the thermal down always remains under the feathers to help the beautiful eagles regulate their temperature.

It looks like the eagle nests I have been reporting on will, for the most part, not be impacted by the snow and ice that is coming in through Saturday. The Love Trio along the Mississippi near Fulton, Illinois, the eagles in PA, Big Red and Arthur’s nest and Duke Farms will likely get some precipitation.

This is the current view of the Mississippi Flyway.

The Pittsburg Hayes Bald Eagles are already dealing with some snow. It is egg watch at this gorgeous nest. That is Mum on the left. Dad is looking down to that beautiful river that supplies this couple with some of their food.

Here is the link to the Pittsburgh Hayes Nest. That nest is only 5 miles from downtown Pittsburg on the Monongahela River. Remember this couple raised three lively chicks to fledge last year! Incredible. This nest is looking for 3-6 inches or up to 15 cm of snow with an ice coating tomorrow.

You might not have this next nest on your radar. This is the information on the streaming cam about the region and the eagles. “The Dulles Greenway Wetlands has been home to two American Bald Eagles since 2005. In 1995, TRIP II established a private 149-acre wetlands preserve in Leesburg, Virginia during the construction of the Dulles Greenway roadway to mitigate the loss of roughly 64 acres of federally protected wetlands. Today, the wetlands property is managed by the Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy and utilized for local wildlife education.”

The first egg was laid at this nest yesterday, 1 February, at 14:47. The adults are currently changing over incubation duties.

Here is the link to this streaming cam. There is also an overhead cam that is off line at the moment. This couple will be seeing more snow and ice along with the nests in PA and NJ.

No worries for the nests in California. Akecheta is currently incubating the two eggs at the West End Bald Eagle Nest in the Channel Islands. Looks like a gorgeous day. The sky is blue in Winnipeg and the snow has stopped but it is bitterly cold. Oh, wish I could twitch my nose and arrive in California for a couple of days to thaw.

The first Kakapo chick has hatched. It was Pearl’s! And Pearl’s second chick is on the way. Here is the announcement from the Kakapo Recovery. Such good news. Hoping that all of the hatches survive and do well. This is so exciting!!!!!!!!! You are witnessing people working hard to recover a population of flightless parrots that could easily go extinct. Incredible the efforts that are being put into this. Makes me smile every day.

I wonder if Ervie will leave the Dad’s mancave today? Will monitor our beautiful boy. He is certainly settling in to a nice life on the barge! Who would have thought?

Thank you for joining me today. It is lovely to have you with me as I do a hop skip and jump around the nests. Take care. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams or their FB pages where I took my screen captures: Kakapo Recovery, KNF Bald Eagles, Berry College Bald Eagles, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Dulles Greenway Eagle Cam, NCTC Bald Eagles, Pix Cams, Explore.org, Achieva Credit Union, and CNN.

Sunday in Bird World

What a Saturday afternoon and night. It was such a huge relief to find Anna on the Bald Eagle nest in the Kistachie National Forest and that there had been either a misidentification or that Anna and Louis switched places at dawn. Whatever happened- Anna is alright. Both birds were stressed on Saturday. It is unclear what was the cause or was it a multitude of things together – humans, gun shots, other intruding birds or animals.

I just love the image below. Everyone is so happy and relaxed this morning.

If you are watching the KNF nest, listen for the ‘laughing’ frogs. They are actually called Southern Leopold frogs but because of the sound they make, they are nicknamed laughing frogs. I hope to goodness that is the only sound that the nest has to hear besides eagles today!

The eaglet is enjoying some of the duck that was delivered earlier.

Eaglet is in food coma. Hopefully by this time next week, this baby will have a name!

The Wildlife Biologist says this afternoon that Anna and Louis would not have made their nest in a place if they were bothered by humans being around. Yesterday was, however, different from any other time that I have watched this nest – last year and this.

I know that many of you are stork lovers. Did you know that there is a live streaming cam with storks at Dreisamtal, about 10 kilometres east of Freiburg, Germany? A pair of storks make their nest on the roof of the Church of St. Gallus. Normally the couple arrive in February but this year, they returned on New Year’s Eve 2021.

The couple come and go for foraging. They sleep on the nest at night. Here is the link to this camera to calm all of your longing-for-storks-to-return!

What gorgeous plumage these Storks have. Incredibly beautiful!

Ervie had a full crop and was being blessed by diamonds all around. Oh, our glorious boy! He has quite the crop in that image. While there are few fish deliveries captured on the streaming cam, it is now believed that Ervie is catching almost all of his fish himself.

Dad does still continue to deliver a fish on occasion when Ervie is crying on the nest. Ervie loves being an ‘only child’.

The other day a word showed up in respect to Ervie – extreme philopatry. Yes, it is possible that Ervie is tied as tight as he can, more than others, to this very nest and that he will not wander too far afield like Falky has done. Indeed, one day we might see Ervie as the adult male on the barge with his own family.

Look a Ervie’s crop! Our young man is doing well. It is a relief to imagine that Ervie is an excellent fisher now.

At the Achieva Osprey nest in St Petersburg, Florida, everyone is waiting for the first egg to be laid this breeding season.

Of course, we are also waiting for Big Red and Arthur to begin working on their nest. It is, actually, awhile still. Last year Big Red laid her eggs on 26 and 29 March and 1 April! So we have about 7 weeks and a few days til our beloved Red-tail Hawk is incubating.

About the time Big Red is laying eggs, Iris will be returning from her winter migration. It is a snowy cold day in Missoula. I hope Iris is enjoying the warmth of her winter home.

At this very same time – as Big Red lays her eggs and we are on watch for Iris to land on her nest, Milda will be laying eggs on the White-tailed eagle nest in Durbe.

When I looked at my calendar and saw those three events – Big Red, Iris, and Milda – there was a big exclamation mark. Of course, all of the Ospreys and Storks will be returning from their winter homes to breed in the UK and Europe! It is going to get really, really busy.

For now, I will turn my attention back to the Bald Eagles. I don’t think NE26 is being an angel but it appears that s/he is not a ruthless brute either to NE27 – that is all good. Samson continues to have the pantry full and the fuzz balls nothing short of adorable.

In the image below, NE 26, the tallest, was trying to peck at 27. 27 did a pretty good job of standing up to its big sib. Bravo!

NE27 still has quite a dominant egg tooth. Sweet little babe with the golden glow of the morning sun shining on it.

A banana leaf was brought on to the WRDC nest. R1 thinks it makes quite a comfortable bed! So cute. It kinda’ fits with having a Papadam Chair for a nest.

R1 and R2 with their charcoal thermal down are growing and growing. Both are eating well and Ron has just brought a nice big fish on to the nest. It will not be long til these two eaglets are walking with ease around the nest. Just look at how big R1 is – looks like Hulk.

The eaglet at Berry College is wanting to have an afternoon snack and is looking intently at what the adult is plucking on the nest. This little one is a real little sweetie. Look at that lovely soft down head. You can see the thermal down coming in on the body of the eaglet. In a couple of days that soft light grey down will be nothing but dandelions!

And, last for today, if you are a Thunder and Akecheta fan, Thunder laid her first egg at the Channel Islands Bald Eagle Nest at 16:54 on 29 January! This is Cheta’s third breeding season and he no longer minds incubating the eggs. Last year the Ravens (or Crows?) got the eggs so this year, hopefully, neither adult will leave them alone!

Here is the link to the Channel Islands streaming cam:

Whew. All is well at the nests. Thankfully. It is supposed to warm up and start snowing on the Canadian Prairies in a short time. It is a good day for a walk out in the fresh air!

Thank you so much for joining me. Take care everyone and just breathe a sigh of relief. Anna is fine.

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: KNF Bald Eagle Nest, Berry College, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, NEFlorida and the AEF, WRDC, Explore.org, Latvian Fund for Nature, Montana Osprey Project, Cornell Bird Lab, Achieva Credit Union, and Storks Nest Live Stream.

Saturday in Bird World

Yesterday I took a walk in the English and the Leo Mol Sculpture Gardens. They are part of the larger Assiniboine Park in Winnipeg. In the summer, these areas are full of people walking and looking at the flowers, of people clamouring to see the latest hummingbird arrival, or me – sitting on a bench hoping to see the juvenile Cooper’s Hawks again.

There was not a single bird in this area of the park yesterday. The wind was bitter against your face. The only remnants of the birds were the nests, sometimes two to a tree. As I looked for nests I also notice this colossal Blue Spruce.

And another one full of Spruce cones. We planted a Blue Spruce in our garden. I am hoping that one day it will be full of cones like this for the Red Squirrels to eat.

There are a few snow flakes falling in the garden. Dyson & Co were up early eating off the suet cylinders and the square hanging feeder. Each had a spot – 3 civilized squirrels all having breakfast. Close your eyes and imagine it! By the time I had the charged battery in the camera they were off, chasing one another in the Lilac bushes.

I checked on Ervie first. The camera has been on and off at Port Lincoln due to the storm. One of the chatters posted a fish arrival time stamp for Ervie yesterday afternoon and thankfully, I could still rewind and find our beautiful boy.

Dad arrives with a nice fish. Here he is flying off. Ervie has it in his talons.

Ervie spends the next hour eating that fish – it was a nice sized one.

I wonder what has happened to Ervie’s feathers on his left wing?

It was just so nice to see Ervie and see him eating that I could have stopped checking on the birds right then! How much longer will we see this incredible Osprey on the barge? Every day is a gift.

It is good to see Port Lincoln posting updates. That means that they survived the big storm as well. Here is the latest tracking for Ervie from yesterday. Yes, he is traveling further afield! So glad he has a tracker!

Port Lincoln also posted information on Calypso. 2019 hatch. Here she is! What a beautiful Osprey!!!!!!

The little chick at Berry College is so adorable. You can see the dark thermal down coming in replacing the soft light grey natal down. Soon our wee one will be able to thermoregulate its own temperature. For today, however, it wants to be close to Mum to stay warm.

A great comparison is the plumage of E19 and E20 yesterday but first, look at that crop. Harriet and M15 have been keeping these two full and I have not seen any of the rivalry when I have been watching them that we did in early days. (Feel free to correct me!)

The thermal down layer now covers E19 and E20. There are a few dandelions of the natal fluff left. You can now see their contour and flight feathers coming in.

The image below shows the juvenile Bald Eagle at the Osceola Florida nest. Notice that it is a dark espresso brown/black. It will not be that long and E19 and E20 will look like this beautiful only Eagle.

The little eaglet is growing and growing at the KNF nest. It is out of its ‘hole’ that Anna had made for it and is up sleeping by the eleven fish and the turtle that Louis has in the nest. The pair have been busy moving Spanish Moss around covering much of the pantry at times.

Look at the size of that leg! You can see the thermal down coming in on the Anna’s baby. Soon there will be only dandelions, faint hints of it as a wee babe. It seems like it has doubled in size overnight.

The eaglets really grow fast. Samson and Gabby’s wee babes are some of the only ones now with natal down. They are darling. Samson seems to have been in some kind of contest with the number of fish on the nest with Louis. As someone reminded me, Samson has 2 to feed, not 1. Regardless, Louis and Samson are two of the best prey providers. Incredible what they bring to the nest.

These two appear to be getting along. They are both doing very well.

The two are not really that much difference in size. The camera angle and 26 having its neck pulled all the way out makes it look much bigger. Gosh they are cute.

The nicest thing about this year in terms of hatching is that the nests vary so much in the age of their nestlings. It is fantastic to see all the stages of development including their plumage!

It was reassuring to check on the WRDC nest and see that R2 (in front) and R1 (eating) both have crops albeit R1 is going to have the larger. The wind is very brisk at the nest. In fact, there is a wind advisory for Miami with a temperature of 13 C (or as you see on screen at 57 F).

There is a cold front moving through all of the Eastern US.

It is much colder in Ithaca. Indeed, Ithaca is -11 C which is precisely the same temperature as we have in Winnipeg today. Crazy. It is difficult to imagine that in less than 8 weeks we could have Big Red incubating eggs on this nest!

Except for the extreme wind and cold temperatures, everything seems to be just fine with all of the nests. Most of all it was wonderful to get a good look at Ervie and know that he has eaten in the midst of all the horrific weather in South Australia the other day. Good news continues to come out of Senegal. The Osprey count along the coast for the month of January was 1206. That is simply amazing Jean-Marie Dupart.

Take care everyone. Thank you so much for joining me. I will see you tomorrow!

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey Project, KNF Bald Eagles, NEFlorida Bald Eagles and the AEF, SWFlorida Bald Eagles and D Pritchett, Berry College Bald Eagles, WRDC, Cornell Bird Lab and RTH, and the Osceola Bald Eagle Nest.