Thursday in Bird World

12 May 2022

What a great day it has been- OK. I haven’t gotten to checking all the nests. There are way too many and I did get caught wondering what in the world is going on at the Hellgate Canyon Osprey nest of Iris. Then I had to check and see how the three chicks at the Manton Bay nest are doing. Was the one slapped by the fish still OK? The promised rain has not materialized as yet but the sunny sky is gradually turning grey again. It was a beautiful day to be outside. The grass is green and the leaves are beginning to pop out of the bud state. I can, of course, take the laptop outside but, you see, the garden birds start telling me that I am interrupting and in their space. You can hear them vocalizing a half block away. So trying to keep the neighbour’s friendly, I went for a walk and had a very sad chat with someone I have know for years from the Ukraine. She is passionate and optimistic. A lovely woman.

In the image below, Iris greets a male visitor.

They are actually a cute couple.

Iris is the oldest osprey in the world. Her nest is at Hellgate Canyon by the Clark Fork River in Missoula, Montana. Iris had a wonderful mate named Stanley. Then Stanley died. Then Louis showed up. Now Iris is a cracker. She can out fish any of the male birds, she is beautiful, and she has an attitude. How she accepted Louis is beyond me. They had one chick survive and then Louis bonded with Star and they have their nest at the baseball park. Louis mates with Iris every year, she lays the eggs, and they get eaten by the Crows because she gets hungry. Louis has shocked everyone this year by bringing some fish to Iris. Did we have hope he would change his ways? Seriously, it takes a Blue 33 (11) or a Monty to handle two nests with two females and at least four or six chicks. Sorry, Louis, but I just don’t think you are up to it. Still, Louis has never let Iris have another mate because it is a ‘territory’ thing. So Iris does what Iris does, the eggs get eaten and she is free to have a leisurely summer. It is the same this year. But,…something seems to be happening. There is a male around. Iris let him land on the nest. Iris asked him to bring her fish. Strikingly Louis did not come and try to chase the male visitor away. In fact, I wonder if Louis would win that fight if it happened. The Montana Osprey Project video taped it. I had some stills but the video is better! BTW. The male’s name is not ‘Elvis’. If he were to stay around, Dr Erick Greene would give him a name.

Everything is just fantastic at the Manton Bay nest of Blue 33 and Maya. Blue has brought in two huge fish since the perch yesterday that was thrashing about. One of those monster fish today was another perch. The three nestlings have eaten well. Maya feeds them, on average, every 2 hours from the first light of the day til sometimes after dark. They are growing strong and there is no evidence now after about 36 or so hours that the wee one thumped by the fish has any lasting issues. At least not visible to the eye. All three are right up there, eyes open and beaks wide when it is dinner time.

Adorable. Everyone eats. All get full to the brim and they will sleep well. Enjoy the nestling cuteness. They change and grow so fast. I love their little wings and the soft down, the stripe through their eyes and down their back. Cute pies.

Every evening Blue 33 comes to check on the pantry to see what is needed for the morning and to say goodnight to Maya. Sometimes during the incubation period, he will sleep on the nest with her but not normally once the chicks hatch.

Every day I do check on Big Red and Arthur and it is astonishing how well those four little Red-tail Hawks are doing. They are now regularly all over the nest. Soon they will be jumping and flapping all over that metal grid ledge. They have done so well.

There is great raptor DNA running through the nests! Just look at the trio that Akecheta and Thunder parented. All I am going to do is say ‘Wow’.

Star (left) and Sentry (right) have dried off from all the rain that was pounding the Redding Bald Eagle nest of Liberty and Guardian yesterday. Gosh, we blinked. Do you remember waiting for them to hatch? and now look!

Sticking with California for a minute or ten, the trio of Osplets on the Venice Golf and Country Club platform have all done well despite early worries about the third hatch.

The Captiva Osprey nest had a 66% success rate this year. That is really good. Middle Little is still letting Andy deliver fish on the platform on the grounds of Lori Covert’s property. Middle Little is such a handsome bird.

So what about Little MiniO? Lori has been out kayaking and at the same time, keeping an eye on the birds. She has spotted the family together many times, the youngsters with parents Andy and Lena flying around the property and over to the island. The Windows for Wildlife chat has posted a link to an image that Lori took. Lori believes this is Little MiniO on her favourite tree. Stunning bird!

I don’t know if anyone reading this is interested in having their own Osprey and Bald eagle nests but Lori’s property at Captiva was for sale. It might have sold, I don’t know. But how grand. Sit and have dinner and watch the Ospreys!

Middle has a bit of a crop. I did not rewind to the beginning of the feeding but the positioning was good at 16:20, one chick on one side and one on the other, with Mum feeding Big a couple of bites to Middle’s one. I will take it! Middle is looking good. It is 26 degrees C, winds have dropped to 13 kph, and the barometric pressure is falling.

Nap time!

Mum has been spending more time on the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge as of late. It is wonderful to see her. It is hard to imagine but her and Dad will begin working on getting the nest back in order after their triplets Bazza, Falky, and Ervie had all those dust ups on it last season!

A nest known for siblicide fledged three. Was it just because they were all male? Let’s wait and see what this year brings. Mum needs to enjoy that fish. Soon she will be busy feeding a nest of little ones. For those of you following Ervie he is still hanging around Port Lincoln. Calypso appears to be with a male and we hope that she has her own nest this year. Mum and Dad can be grandparents!

I sometimes mention fundraising that groups are doing. The Port Lincoln Osprey Project takes care of the costs of the streaming cam, the barge, etc that many enjoy. They also raise awareness about the needs of the Ospreys in South Australia and lobby to get the hydro poles change, etc. They are now wanting to build more platforms for the growing population of Eastern Ospreys in South Australia. If you feel so inclined, you can join as a member or make a donation or do both or neither! [Please note: I post the information to support the groups. I do not make a penny on any memberships or donations.]

Here is the information that was posted on the Port Lincoln Osprey FB page today:

I want to close with something pretty special. It is a mid-air prey transfer between Alden and Annie. Quite amazing! These two are a great couple.

Thank you so much for joining me today. The one chick is still alive at Dahlgren Osprey Platform, all three are crackers at Manton Bay, the three at Venice are doing great, Middle had a crop – it couldn’t get much better than that. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Port Lincoln Osprey, Lori Covert, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Captiva Ospreys and Window for Wildlife, VGCCO, Friends of Redding Eagles, Explore.org, Cornell Bird Lab RTH, Cal Falcons, LRWT Manton Bay, and Montana Osprey Project.

Early Sunday in Bird World

1 May 2022

Eggs are starting to hatch in some of the European stork nests as well as the falcon nests in North America and the UK. It is a really exciting time for bird lovers of all species. Even the White-bellied Sea Eagles (WBSE) are starting to work on their nest in Sydney, Australia. I cannot believe how fast time flies – like a falcon!

This morning, 1 May, at the nest of Wilma and Wilfried in Lindheim, Germany, the 5 White Stork eggs began to hatch shortly after dawn. Two hatched right away and a third is pipping. Hopefully, the other two will come quickly also. The previous male at this nest, Wilheim, lived to be 30 years old, disappearing in 2020.

Lindheim is a short distance north and slightly west of Frankfurt.

The countryside is gorgeous.

Here is a link to this streaming cam:

Bukachek and Betty have five White Stork eggs at their nest in Mlade Buky, The Czech Republic, too. Soon there will be storks hatching everywhere! If you travel to Spain and Portugal you will also see storks everywhere- nests on top of all the buildings! I am told that this is true in parts of Poland – . Storks are symbols of joy and the promise of a bright future. No wonder they are looked after so well and welcomed.

Here is the streaming cam for Bukachek and Betty:

At the Black Stork nest of Karl II and Kaia in the Karula Forest in Estonia, Kaia shows Karl II their fourth egg this morning. Karl II is the banded stork with the transmitter. Kaia is so tiny. This is their second season together. Last year there were three hatches and each fledged.

This is the link to Karl II and Kaia’s streaming cam:

The White-tail eaglets in the Tucholskie Forest in Poland had a big feed resulting in huge crops and sound sleep.

This is the link to this camera:

At the Weissenburg Peregrine Falcon nest, three of the four eggs have hatched. The first hatch was on 12 April quickly followed by the second on the 13th and the third on the 14th. The fourth egg was deemed to be non-viable. The chicks will be ringed when they are older.

Oh, a little cuddle puddle.

This is the link to the streaming cam for the falcons:

That is a quick look at some of the nests in Europe that you may or may not be familiar.

Oh, goodness, you want to see little eyases in the US? There are three – one newly hatched – at the Manchester, New Hampshire scrape! So cute…There is one more egg to hatch but it might not. There is no pip. And sometimes only one out of three or four falcon eggs hatch. The smallest wee babe hatched during the early morning hours and is already dry while the others know to hold those pink beaks high and keep them open for food

Here is the link to the falcon streaming cam in Manchester, NH:

There are also two eyases at the falcon scrape in Utica. These two hatched on the 27th of April. You can see how quickly they have grown compared to the wee ones at Manchester. Cute.

Here is the link to the streaming cam at Utica, NY:

It is early morning in Captiva and Middle (Little) is waiting in his tree perch for Andy to bring a fish to the nest. Squint. It is the tree in front of the palm and Middle Little is at 3 o’clock. Just a tiny white dot.

Big Red and Arthur have already had a change in brooding. Gosh, Big Red must get ‘stiff’ hunched over those four wiggly eyases all night.

Just look at Arthur! Lots of people doubted if he would be able to cover all those chicks. Arthur, you look like a pro!

Breakfast for the Ls as the sun rises.

It is raining in many parts of the US and the three eaglets at the Pittsburgh-Hayes nest are positively soaked this morning.

Mum is trying to keep the two at the US Steel Irwin Plant nest dry – but the poor babies aren’t babies anymore!

It looks like it is a little wet at the Dale Hollow Bald Eagle nest where Big and Middle are waiting for breakfast to arrive.

It is raining at the site of the Minnesota DNR Bald Eagle nest of Nancy and ‘missing’ Harry. There is only one eaglet on the nest. Yesterday, E1 shoved E2 off the nest. Its injuries were such that it had to be euthanized.

The male, Harry, disappeared Tuesday evening. On Wednesday, Nancy caught a huge fish and brought it to the nest. Both of the eaglets were full as was Mum. She has, as far as I know, not been able to hunt since then. This means that E1 and Nancy have not eaten since Wednesday. There is an intruder that is stopping Nancy from leaving her eaglet. — This could turn into a very sad situation quickly for all.

Nancy tried to feed her only eaglet from the old bones in the nest yesterday.

She has found something this morning. Wet and continuing sadness, possibly.

The two surviving osplets at the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest are getting their beautiful juvenile feathers. Both are eating and the tension at the nest does not appear to have returned.

If you missed the Ventana Wildlife Society’s Zoom chat a few days ago, they have archived that discussion about the California Condors. They are in the process of rebuilding the ‘pen’ at Big Sur after the Dolan fire two years ago. Redwood Queen has an egg that could hatch any moment and much more news.

This is the latest tracking received on our sweetie pie, Ervie. He made a visit to Boston Island on the 29th! Wow. Ervie still hangs around the hotel and his favourite tree in Port Lincoln most of the time. I wonder how that talon of his is growing and healing? Ervie, if you could pay a visit to the barge we might be able to check! It sure would be nice to see you.

And last for this morning but absolutely never the least – the Peregrine Falcon scrape at The Campanile on the grounds of UC-Berkeley. It is the home of Annie and Alden (and 2 eggs of Grinnell’s). Cal Falcons likes data and they are predicting, from past experience, when Annie’s eggs will hatch.

Now I cannot be there but if you live in the San Francisco area, why not join Sean and Lynne and all the other CalFalcon lovers on 6 May? It looks like fun!

The ground in southern Manitoba is soaked and the water in the rivers continues to climb. Deer are trying to find dry ground, many walking along the railway lines that are slightly higher, in search of a spot and some food. Some communities are completely flooded. So far we have managed to keep the bird seed relatively dry in the garden despite the rain. The migrating birds continue to arrive and this includes the Ospreys that were spotted yesterday.

Our mayor, Brian Bowman, posted some images from inside the floodway yesterday. Some individuals are having trouble with seepage and flooding – I am fine. Thank you for all of your concern but so far, so good! This is a view of our downtown area facing St Boniface, the wonderful French area of our City. That large building is the Human Rights Museum.

@Brian Bowman Mayor’s Office

If I missed your favourite nests, I will try and include them in the next report. Thank you so much for joining me. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam and/or FB pages where I took my screen captures: Cornell Bird Lab RTH, MN-DNR, Captiva Ospreys and Window for Wildlife, Pix Cams, Mayor Brian Bowman FB, DHEC, Cal Falcons, UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Bielik Online Bory Tucholskie, Storchennest Lindheim, Ziva Kamera Mlade Buky, Utica Falcons, Peregrine Networks, Port Lincoln Osprey Project FB, and Eagle Club of Estonia.

Monday Morning in Bird World

25 February 2022

It is a beautiful morning on the Canadian Prairies. The sun is out a little bit and white snow fell overnight. The birds are very happy. They do not like the 45 kph gusts last night or the torrential rain on Saturday. I am also feeling lucky that we are not flooding and sad for the people and wildlife that are struggling with continuing flood waters in southern Manitoba and at various parts of Winnipeg.

I am going to begin with the sad news.

I wanted to make sure before I provided any more incorrect information about Little Bit. I have been monitoring the nest for many hours at UFlorida. Despite being fed Sunday after 86 hours without food, Little Bit lost its struggle to live. The precise time is unknown. The tiny wee one was almost delirious eating fish yesterday. It was such a joyful ten minutes watching Little Bit have some fish. It made us hopeful. At the time, the little one had not had a ps in a long time and at what point are its internal organs damaged? The heat at the top of the nest is hugely problematic in terms of hydration if fish are not consumed for that is where the osplets get their water. Little Bit got to eat because three fish came on the nest in quick succession. With the arrival of the third one, Big beaked Little Bit and fought with Middle. After some fish, the older two finally collapsed. It was only on their collapse that Little Bit got to eat and eat it did for ten minutes. I bet fish never tasted so good. Then another fish arrived, a 4th one, at 18:32:45. The female dragged that fish right across Little Bit’s head. It looks as if that is the precise place where Little Bit passed on. I had hoped for a miracle for this third hatch who wanted to live and who had such a wonderful start to life. This nest truly looked promising. The turn came on 10 April and for the past two weeks the baby suffered great abuse. There was a bit of a reprieve on the 18th and then the programme of siblicide began again on the 19th. — Those are a summary of the facts as we know them of Little Bit’s struggle to live on this nest. I had so hoped you would be alive and eating this morning, Little Bit. It was not meant to be. Fly high, Little One. Fly high. Soar.

The Osprey nest at Captiva is vacant this morning. Middle (or Little) was there yesterday. The parents should be feeding the chicks off camera. There has been no word on Little (or MiniO) since she fledged. If you look at the tree closest to the shore to the left of the scrape box you will see what I believe is an Osprey. This was Middle (or Little’s) tree that it liked to sit on. Perhaps it is him.

If you are in the market for a property at Captiva with an Osprey and Eagle nest, Lori Covert’s property is for sale.

The falcons and the hawks have been ignored, at times, in favour of the eagles and the ospreys so I want to check on some of these other nests while returning to a couple of Osprey nests that are normally very stable.

There is a Red-tail Hawk nest streaming cam in San Francisco at The Presidio. I had no idea. What a surprise in the wee hours of the morning when it just appeared. There are two chicks. They still have their white down and they are feisty!

The Presidio’s resident Red-tailed Hawk pair have been hard at work preparing their nest 100 feet up in one of the Presidio’s blue gum eucalyptus trees. The information tells me that “The Presidio is an important stop on the Pacific Flyway, the major north-south flyway for migratory birds, which means it’s a hotspot for birdwatching with 323 different types of birds spotted (so far!) in the park.”

The two eggs were laid the middle of March. The site does not state when they hatched but they look to be less than a week old but slightly older than Big Red’s chick, L1.

I do not know anything about this nest but I am quite excited. With only two chicks in this nest, both of them should grow happily. In general, it is easier to watch the hawk and falcon nests than the eagles and Ospreys as food competition and sibling rivalry are much less frequent.

Breakfast Monday morning. So well behaved like little falcons normally are.

This is simply fantastic news. Here is the link to follow this Red-tail Hawk family in California!

Early morning at the Buckinghamshire Council offices in the UK and there is that beautiful Peregrine Falcon. No eggs yet. Predicting soon!

We also have Peregrine Falcons in Manitoba. There are several streaming cams as part of the Peregrine Recovery Project. Ella and Pip have their scrape on the top of the Radisson Hotel in downtown Winnipeg. The couple have three eggs. Check out The Peregrine Chick on Twitter for news.

The last of the three eggs were laid on the 22nd of April and now it is hard incubation. Egg 1 was laid on the 17th with egg 2 on the 20th. Ella was tucked up tight as the cold weather returned to the ‘peg.

One of the great things that the local group has done is to compile a listing of Peregrine Falcon cameras in North America as well as world sites. It is not comprehensive as I see it does not include the Utica, New York scrape. Utica, you might want to send them a note and ask to be included. On that same page as the listing are a number of books related to Peregrine Falcons and other links. For the cameras, you just have to click on the site and presto – another cam with falcons to keep you awake!

http://www.species-at-risk.mb.ca/pefa/r-resources.html

I cannot find the live feed for the Utica cam of Astrid and her mate but, an article was posted on on the 24th on Falcon Watch Utica FB page.

It was a gorgeous morning at the Cape Henlopen Osprey Nest in Lewes, Delaware this morning. Mum and Dad were both on the nest. Dad kept coming to see if he could have a turn at incubation and Mum kept refusing!

The site will not let me embed their camera link so search for the nest at YouTube.

L3 has hatched for Big Red and Arthur at the Cornell nest in Ithaca. That happy event happened at 06:03 this morning. Lined up from left to right: L3, L2, and L1. Big Red is trying to convince them that they want an early morning breakfast!

It looks like it is hard to keep 3 moving chicks and an egg comfortably under you, Big Red.

It is hard to see from the glare but Rhett and Scarlett are back making nestorations and mating on the Savannah Osprey Nest that was previously leased to the Great Horned Owls. I wonder how the season will go. It is late Osprey eggs in the region but, I guess we will find out!

Here is the link to this camera. Note that the Ospreys are not always on the nest.

Annie and Alden at the UCalifornia-Berkeley’s Campanile scrape are doing fantastic. What a great team they are! During the Q & A a question was asked about Alden’s personality or character. We learned some very intriguing things about Annie’s new mate. The first is that he ‘sings or talks’ a lot more than Grinnell. Alden also likes to hunt at night. The raptors are asleep but the other birds are awake and flying. The light pollution aids in hunting but the falcons have good night vision. This could also help Alden with his hunting since he has a badly healed injury in his left ankle area (this is what CalFalcons believes observing him). Alden has no trouble killing his prey but he might have difficulties holding on to it so if he dropped it at night there is less chance that a predator would get it! Smart one, Alden. It might surprise you but Cal Falcons noticed that Alden is much more aggressive in his defence of Annie and the eggs and the territory than Grinnell. For now, Alden is working hard for Annie and those three eggs. That is his only focus!

Hatch watch is May 5-6 and Sean and Lynn will be holding another Q & A at that time. These are great opportunities to learn about falcons! If you miss them, the couple are great to archive them on YouTube for you. Here is the link to the CalFalcons cam:

If you are wanting to watch an Osprey nest, I cannot recommend one more highly right now than Richmond and Rosie at the Richmond Shipping Yards in San Francisco Bay. They are a solid couple that has no trouble raising three osplets! This year they have three eggs that hatched on April 5, 8, and 11.

Here is the link to the camera of the SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon:

http://sfbayospreys.org/

Do you love kestrels? The first egg has been laid in the Yorkshire Dales kestrel nest! It arrived yesterday, the 24th of April at 12:50.

The Jackdaws have been a problem for this raptor couple. I hope they do not return! Here is the link to the camera which is operational from 08:00-20:00 daily, nest time.

The Cornell Bird Lab also has a kestrel nest that has four eggs. The fourth was laid on 23 April at 12:11 and it appears that hard incubation may have begun. This nest has not had a problem with Jackdaws that I am aware of!

Here is the link to this Kestrel nest in Wisconsin:

At 10:39, Mum and the two eldest surviving chicks on the UFlorida-Gainesville Osprey nest all had large crops. It is very possible that like the Dale Hollow Bald Eagle nest, this Osprey nest will settle down and there will be no more food rivalry. Only time will tell if the fish deliveries can keep up with the demand.

Thank you for joining me today. This has been a hop and skip around some familiar nests with some new ones added. I will check on all our favourites later today. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams and/or FB pages or Twitter feeds: UFlorida-Gainesville Ospreys, Captiva Ospreys and Window for Wildlife, Presidio RTH SF, Buckinghamshire Council, Peregrine Chick, Utica Peregrine Falcons FB, Cape Henlopen SP Ospreys, Cornell RTH, Landings Savannah Osprey, and Cal Falcons.