Ervie, fledges and more – early Tuesday in Bird World

9 August 2022

First a correction! Shame on me for saying we know where Telyn winters. It is not Telyn but, the beautiful Seren from Llyn Clywedog that spends her winters in The Gambia. I knew that and wrote Telyn. Thanks, ‘C’ for alerting me. Much appreciated!

One other clarification that ‘CE’ caught that needs explaining. Osprey fledglings are the raptors that do not require their parents to teach them to hunt or fish. Others do. You will have seen the eagles and hawks showing their fledglings how to hunt prey! I bet Ervie did chase Dad around in his efforts to find some good fishing spots, though!

Ervie, dear Ervie. Port Lincoln posted images after I had sent out my blog last evening so our dear Ervie is up first. Thanks to ‘B’ for alerting me to these.

As so many of you are aware, Port Lincoln Ospreys is working hard to introduce our fish eagles to Southern Australia. They are getting attention from government agencies and, of course, the population is growing to love these birds – many because of our dear Ervie. Here are the latest postings from Port Lincoln and the beautiful pictures of Ervie out fishing with Dad by Fran Solly. There are more on the Port Lincoln Osprey FB page. Head over and have a look. This is the place to continue checking on Ervie and his antics with Dad — or alone.

It is always good to see you, Ervie.

Is there room for you, Ervie??????!!!!!!

Remember when we worried that Ervie would only be able to catch puffers? Well, he has certainly adjusted to fishing without that other talon (I have not seen it fully grown in on the pictures but I would love to be corrected!). That is a beautiful fish. Well done, Ervie.

At the Black Stork nest in the Karula National Forest of Karl II and Kaia, Bonus, the adopted storklet of Jan and Janika, Bonus, fledged first today. He was followed by Volks who hears Bonus in the forest and flies off to the left.

Both returned to the nest. Ilks is looking at his reflection in the camera. Will you fly next? So funny when they find themselves. After fledging the Black Storks will stay at least a week around the nest being fed. If the food is plentiful they may stay longer before venturing out to find food for themselves and beginning migration.

As ‘B’ says, it is hard to beat the WBSE for cuteness. SE30 is a bit of a corker. When it was 2 days old, 30 beaked at 29. Not a good thing to do. We have all worried about 30 but unless there is an unexpected ‘something’, they should both be fine. SE30 gives as good as it gets and they both fool around with one another and then seem to stop before it gets too rough.

Chubby little bottoms. Their soft down on the head is giving way to pin feathers and the feathers are coming in nicely along the wings. They will begin to do a lot more preening as things get itchy. You can see their black talons and those big clown feet getting started. So cute.

Of the streaming cams in Australia, we now have the WBSE eaglets and the first egg at the Port Lincoln Osprey barge for Mum and Dad as of yesterday. We are awaiting the beginning of the season for Peregrine falcons Xavier and Diamond and the Melbourne CBD – 367 Collins Street. Xavier and Diamond are amping up the bonding in the scrape! Eggs before the end of the month?

The only chick on the Landscape Arboretum platform at the University of Minnesota fell off yesterday. It has not fledged. Here is the video of that incident. This could have turned out badly – and would have if not for the quick actions at finding the chick and getting it back on the nest. Thanks to all involved!

Boris and Titi (yet to fly) on the Janakkalan nest in Finland. 9 August 2022. Handsome!

All of the White Storklings of Betty and Bukacek have fledged. They seem to spend their time finding the parents and following them back to the nest for good feedings.

Look carefully. Bukacek is flying into the nest from the left (right above the grassy area at 930 on the nest).

All of the storklings came to the nest quickly so as not to miss a meal.

All of the UK chicks have fledged. This year the three at Foulshaw Moss did not get the best attention from me – in terms of publicizing the nest activities here on the blog. Last year I followed every move because of the third hatch – Blue 463 who survived and did extremely well. Waiting for her return next year! The Cumbrian Wildlife Trust have put out a very nice blog with an overview of the nest activities including some links to videos.

https://www.cumbriawildlifetrust.org.uk/blog/alasdair-mckee/there-were-three-nest-and-littlest-fledged?fbclid=IwAR3EmfM6q7y1XNIqdvENXGlh8x4VhZve9AwmrsA4vAFcs_XRrvXubF76BhM

There appears to have been a fledge this morning at the Fortis Exshaw Osprey platform near Canmore Alberta. Thanks ‘H’ for the tip off! They seem to all be relatively equal – perhaps the others will fly today. You can see Mum looking on over the nest at her three beautiful chicks from the perch.

The fledge was a quick take off, fly around the nest and return landing on the right side.

I am counting a fledge as a flight off the nest and a return. In my mind, the chicks jumping up or getting to the many perches is equivalent to branching for Eagles, not a full blown official fledge. The real question is how far away is the perch? It is too difficult to tell. Mum certainly looks small and if it is a distance, then it might be counted as a fledge. If that is the case, then there were two fledges at Canmore this morning so far.

Big Red, Arthur, and L2 have all been accounted for by Suzanne Arnold Horning this week. Excellent news. Still no recent updates on L3 or L4.

L2 in the top picture screaming for a prey item and Big Red and Arthur calmly relaxing in the second.

Everyone remains curious as to how Victor got so much zinc in his system that he almost died. The Institute for Wildlife Studies has indicated that there are fishing lures coated with zinc. Thanks ‘B’. Here is the posting on the chat at the IWS. The question still remains: how much zinc does a fledgling eagle have to ingest to almost kill it? I do not know the answer to that question but I hope to find out.

The posting of the images of Little Bit 17 prompted a lot of mail. Everyone is thrilled and so very reassured that it is our little tenacious eagle. So grateful to the boots on the ground for chasing after this family and sharing their photos and videos with us on the Notre Dame Eagles FB.

‘CE’ had a very interesting analogy that seems quite fitting given the sponsors of the camera and the university that they are associated with – Notre-Dame. CE noted that the image of Little Bit looks like a Franciscan Friar with his friar’s crown. He said, “In the 5th century, the tonsure was introduced as a distinctive sign. In the East, the Pauli tonsure was used (all hair was cut), in the West, the Petri tonsure (only the top of the head was shaved). This was also called Corona Christi (Crown of Christ). Since the 16th century, the tonsure of regular clerics has been reduced to a small circle.” Friar Little Bit. It sounds nice.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is lovely to have you with us and the birds. I will continue to monitor the nests during the day. Tomorrow I am heading north for two days to count and enter the GPS for the Bald Eagle nests in and around Hecla Island. That information will be sent to David Hancock whose foundation monitors bald eagle nests in Canada. I hope to get some good images of the adults and juveniles before they leave for their winter homes. There will not be a newsletter tomorrow morning but I will try my best to get some images out to you tomorrow evening. Please take dare. I look forward to seeing you again soon.

I want to thank everyone who wrote in and sent me news. I still have some of your images to post! Much appreciated. I want to also thank the following for their streaming cams and/or posts or their photographs that I used for my screen captures: Fran Solly and the Port Lincoln Ospreys, Suzanne Arnold Horning, the Notre-Dame Eagles FB, the Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Mlade Buky White Storks, Fortis Exshaw, the Finnish Osprey Foundation, the IWS, Charles Sturt University Falcon Cam, Landscape Arboretum Ospreys, and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park.

Late Monday news in Bird World

8 August 2022

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

1H3 has enjoyed a nice fish delivery today.

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

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

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

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

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

Just look at all the cameras.

Relaxing down by the Dyfi River.

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

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

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

These two look to be in brilliant shape!

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

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

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

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

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

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

This one desperately wants a fish!

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

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

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

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

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

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

Late Sunday in Bird World

7 August 2022

It was a lovely trip to a small town on the Canadian Prairies to check out waterfowl – which turned out not to be Greater Yellow Legs – but, a small variety of ducks. What is so nice and relaxing is a single area around Crescent Lake and Island Park. There are walking and biking paths as well as benches to look out over the water and watch the ducks. It was beautiful and quiet, something someone living in a big city does not realize they need until they are sitting surrounded by the sound of hardly anything.

As it was nearing dusk, the water glistened with silver striations. The ducks were quite camouflaged. You could only spot them when they were moving. All of the bird ID technology available to me identifies this as a pair of Common Goldeneye. They were about 100 m or 328 ft away.

The duck in front with its wings raised preparing to fly is a female. She has a chocolate brown head, lighter grey breast. You can sometimes see a thin white collar.

This Eared Grebe was finding food and feeding this little one. It had two with it and this is a male.

This cute little female Wood Duck with her tear-shaped eye-ring did not seem to mind having her picture taken.

The Duck at the back of the group is a Northern Pintail. She almost fooled me but her bill is grey while that of the Mallard in the front right is orange. The Pintail does not have the eye line of the Mallard either.

Another American Pintail on the rock.

The American Coot came along and stood on one of two large stones at the edge of the marshy area. If you look carefully you can see the black ring at tip of the white bill. Coots have red eyes, long green-yellow legs and a charcoal grey plumage all over their body.

Mallards.

What surprised me the most was the fact that there were recently hatched ducklings! I started counting the months til they would migrate and began wondering what on earth. It is possible that they will not fly away for winter. There is a river called the Assiniboine that is south of Crescent Lake. There are several dozen ducks that remain on that river near to where my daughter lives in Winnipeg.

The way that the ducks camouflage themselves in the reeds was simply remarkable – just like the striations on the river in the evening when you cannot see them.

It was a lovely day away and it was nice to get home having the Crows complain that all the peanuts and cheesy sausages were gone!

It was nice to come home to have an update about the Poole Harbour Ospreys. Here is the official announcement if you have not seen it.

CJ7 and H51 along with Blue 022 have now been on the nest. These images are from the 6th.

H51 eating a fish.

CJ7 came in with a fish for H51. They will be careful of the nest now that they know there is a Goshawk in the area. Just like Ospreys are being introduced so are Goshawks. These Ospreys then will always need to take great care.

The family is not sleeping on the nest at night.

Annie and Alden certain are enjoying their quiet time when Lindsay and Grinnell Jr don’t pop out of a corner chasing them. This is a four-minute bonding ritual complete with many kisses! If this doesn’t put a smile on your face, I do not know what would. They start off with what appears to be a conversation or a long permission to enter the scrape and amp it up from there.

The Sea Eaglet chicks have crossed over that stage of beaking and bopping and are now teasing one another.

This is just too funny!

Then a beak kiss. Lady just takes it all in stride. Notice that their crops are rather full and squishy providing the perfect cropillow.

The pin feathers can be seen much easier on the eaglets today.

There were six feedings on the Black Stork nest in the Karula National Forest of Karl II and Kaia. The storklets have been jumping and hovering and preening as well as eating. In fact they ate really well today.

The storklings can tell that an adult is approaching with food. They begin their begging dance which helps to stimulate the parent to bring up the food.

Karl II delivers a lot of fish. The basket must have been replenished.

Bonus is 77 days old today. Under normal conditions, Bonus would have fledged. Urmas believes that maybe it is delayed development due to a lack of food. The longest recorded time to first flight for Black Storks comes from China at 76 days. Bonus broke a record! The record for earliest fledge is 56 days (Saxony). Generally the chicks fledge before the female leaves for migration. But will this happen this year? Kaia left on 11 August last year. When they leave we must send them positive thoughts – it is a long, long journey through an area of war. I wonder what the nature refuge at Odessa looks like? was it shelled? or just the port area?

Titi at the Janakkalan nest has been really eating and growing – he seems to have caught up with Boris in size in a couple of days. He has not fledged and both osplets hatched on the same day. I wonder if the difference in feeding – like that with Little Bit 17 and Bonus – has really impacted his development too? All of us were aware that Boris was getting much more but how much we could not easily measure.

Titi hovering.

I understand that Titi is now sleeping alone on the nest while Boris is perched in the trees – near Dad?

The Osoyoos Osplets of Soo and Olsen are still on the nest! Whenever you go away you hope that chicks do not fledge but — that can’t be controlled! You also hope to come home and have all safely in the nest just as it was when you left. The family continues to deal with the heat domes they have experienced. This is the second one. It is currently 36 F and will climb to 38 tomorrow. It seems Olsen is still able to find fish.

Love and Peace remain on the nest at Glacier Gardens. They should be branching soon. Love and Peace will not migrate. They will remain in Alaska where they will feed off the local Salmon just like their sibling, Kindness, from 2021.

If we want everyone to respect nature and wildlife we have to make an effort to educate them, to get them to ‘love’ and ‘respect’ the birds like we do, to get them to understand their challenges — and to get them involved. Port Lincoln Osprey just posted an event that is intent on doing just that!

It looks like Mum and Dad at Port Lincoln Osprey Barge could become grandparents this year. This is Calypso on the left watching her mate eat a fish…I presume he knows that he is supposed to feed her, right? Calypso was the 2020 hatch with Star. Star has not been seen. —— She is Ervie’s sister. Gosh, I wish there was word about Bazza and Falky.

It is a very foggy morning on the grounds of Charles Sturt University in Orange, Australia. You can just see the trees below the water tower where the scrape of Xavier and Diamond is located.

The fog goes away quickly. Diamond looks out over her territory. We should be having eggs in what? 3 weeks?

There is news that L3 is doing well with her flight training. That is great news. L2 has been hanging out with Big Red and Arthur learning more hunting techniques. I do not have an update on L4 but I am assuming that the soft tissue injury will heal rather quickly. The Boathouse was back on ‘Highlights’ so if you go there to check on the three osplets just make sure you look down at the left corner….Highlights often shows an empty nest! Good way to get a heart attack. :))))

Thank you for joining me this evening for a quick check up on the birds. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, FB posts where I took my screen captures: Friends of Poole Harbour, Cal Falcons, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Osoyoos Ospreys, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Charles Sturt University falcon cam, and Glacier Gardens.

Migration woes and daily threats to our feathered friends

5 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It is a hazy day on the Canadian Prairies. The birds have been up early feeding as temperatures are set to rise to 29 degrees C today. The plants in the garden are looking a little droopy despite watering – we have been lucky to have all that rain. Some areas are really struggling. It is now a little after noon and the Crows and Blue Jays are reminding me that they need more peanuts and want their water changed! They are so smart. Wonder if I could teach them how to use the water hose?

I hope that you enjoyed seeing those beautiful pictures of Brooks back on the nest with Mum and Dad, Rosie and Richmond, at the WWII Whirley Crane. HE is well and beautiful. In case you missed it, Brooks (Blue XA) arrived back to the nest yesterday in the late afternoon and DNA testing has confirmed that Brooks is a male. Molate was also confirmed to be a male. This is a photo of him. He is very handsome.

Richmond does not migrate but Rosie does. Wonder which Brooks will choose? It is much safer to stay put!

Rosie has brought Brooks a lovely fish. Welcome home, Brooks.

Fish hooks and monofilament line are dangerous for all birds that eat fish like Ospreys and eagles. This is a reminder that things on nests can happen quickly — and for us to clean up our environment! Join a riverbank of lake clean up. It will make you proud that you have helped.

As we get ready to begin the great autumn migration, it is perhaps best if we take a deep breath. Migration is extremely dangerous especially for first year fledglings but it is becoming increasingly difficult for ‘seasoned’ birds as well.

I was surprised when I brought home a book from our nature centre, Atlas of bird Migration. Tracking the Great Journeys of the World’s Birds. It has good solid information on species with maps, information on the difference of gender in certain species as to migration —– and, hold on, out of 176 pages, four are devoted to “Threats and Conservation.” Out of those four, two pages had large photographs. The book lists: water (they show an oil spill), field and forest (they show fires), hunting and caging. Can you think of good current examples of these that will impact the birds we love heading to their winter quarters? what are they missing? Send your ideas to me and they will be included in a special blog on migration next Friday, 12 August.

Do you live anywhere near Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania? You can visit but, you can also take part in the annual count. Here are the dates that the birds fly over. Even if you didn’t help with the count what a special time to see the birds flying with the thermals, soaring over the mountains on their way to South America.

Hawk Mountain has kept track of spring and autumn migrations since 1934. You can go to their link and see population shifts. It is an eye-opener in some cases.

https://www.hawkmountain.org/conservation-science/resources/migration-data

Each of the nests below has faced or is facing challenges like many others. If you looked at the picture of the nest could you come up with issues they have faced? Try it before reading my text!

The two osplets at the Osoyoos Osprey nest have not fledged yet. They are working on some wingersizing. Caught them enjoying an early fish from Olsen this morning. Today will be good but by Sunday the temperatures at the nest will be 36 rising to 38 on Monday and 40 on Tuesday. Extreme heat has been an issue at this nest for several years with the temperatures continuing to rise and rise.

Thanks to the lovely people who live around the Notre-Dame Eagle nest we have more pictures of ND 15, 16, and Little Bit 17. It is always so funny…Little Bit seems to love to hide behind the small branches with leaves. So grateful to all those keeping track of the trio!

Hi Sweetheart.

The Parramatta River and Sydney Harbour have some significant toxins in the water that impacts the fish eaten by the sea birds.

The toxins leaked into the river from a shipping container company as reported in The Sydney Morning Herald on 16 May 2009. The article said, “The Patrick’s site on the Camellia peninsula, near Rosehill Racecourse, has been found to be leaking the chemical Chromium VI, posing a risk to people and marine life.”

In 2017, 2ser 107.3 reported that the Parramatta River was a “toxic time bomb.” They said, “Fifty years of toxic chemical residue is sitting on the bottom of Sydney Harbour and the Parramatta River. It’s a toxic time-bomb and disturbing this sediment could worsen already dire pollution levels. And now sweeping developments along the shore of the River could be bringing more pollution to the already sullied waters.” While many might have hoped to swim in the river before they were too elderly to do so, contaminated storm water was pumped into the river in December 2020 causing more problems.

It is unclear what impact this is having on the White-bellied Sea Eagles who are at the top of the food chain along the river. Despite research being carried out, the direct implication to these WBSE is not normally discussed. If you know of a study with results, please let me know.

Lady with WBSE 29 and 30. They are filling up the nest cup!

Karl and Kaia missed each other by a flap of a wing. The fish basket has been replenished! Karl II rains down fish on the storklets. You can see the fish on the nest in the image below and then in the video. So grateful for Urmas and his fish baskets that have kept this family in good health. Areas where the Black Storks used to fish is becoming too developed and it is becoming more difficult to find fish – so grateful for the intervention. I continue to question whether or not it would work -in nests impacted by human action such as Osoyoos – to place a fish basket for the Ospreys? Would they use it? We are constantly told that the temperatures we are experiencing now are not going to alter but will get hotter. We need to work on plans for the birds.

Kaia has also been collecting fish for the four.

The four were stuffed after the feedings from both Karl II and Kaia. They will not fledge in rainy weather nor will they fledge when they are so full.

Urmas posted this note on Looduskalender yesterday. It has some information about what will happen once the storklets fledge.

The storklets now have names. Bonus will keep his name. The other three are Voog, Wada, and Iks.

The three storklets of Karl II and Kaia are Voog. This is Voog standing up

Waba is on the perch.

Iks is preening Waba. So there are the three!

Last year Kaia left for her migration on 11 August. These storklets should have fledged last week but they have not. Recent heavy rains have halted this or large feedings. The longer they stay on the nest and eat the stronger they will be.

The storks will travel to the centre of Africa for their migration. Have a look at a map and remember that that they often stop west of Odessa at a nature reserve. What particular issues will they face during migration?

The migration threats to the White Storks of Mlade Buky in the Czech Republic are similar to the ones that Klepetan faced when he migrated back and forth from Croatia to South Africa. He would visit his mate, Malena in Croatia for the breeding period. The person who cared for Malena was particularly concerned with the White Storks passing over Lebanon? S Vokic even wrote to the Prime Minister and President of Lebanon. Do you remember what his concerns were?*

Dad continues to provide fish on the Janakkalan Osprey nest in Finland. I have not seen Titi fly.

He can fly. He just does not know it and he has no mother like Nuppu to encourage him. As such he continues to be a target for predators. It is good to remember that Ospreys talons are for holding fish – getting them out of the water and transporting them – not for fighting. They are too curved inward.

Despite concerns over migration or intruders, the birds on the nests are doing fine. Their health appears good and food is coming in on a regular basis – even at Osoyoos where Olsen brings fish in early on the hottest of days and late in the day. Once the birds fledge they can also cool off in the water. Keep sending them your warmest wishes. Life is getting ready to get difficult as they fly, perfect their flying, and set off on their own course in life.

There is some great news coming out of Yorkshire! More firsts for the UK Osprey population. Fantastic.

Sharon Dunne posted an update on when the Royal Cam chick will be banded. They ran out of time yesterday. Here is the announcement:

The Albatross face particular threats that some of the other migrating birds do not face. QT chick will fledge in September. When she flies off Taiaroa Head she will head out to sea where she will spend 4-6 years before ever returning to land. Then she will return as a juvenile with wobbly legs for a bit partying it up with the others hoping to find a mate for future years. What could happen to these lovely birds on the high seas for all those years?

In the Northern Hemisphere, the lovely sea birds around the UK continue to die from Avian Flu. They thought it was over and it has come back with a fury. Dutch scientist, Thijs Kuken says the solution for future outbreaks is to stop the factory farming of poultry. So far the Ospreys in the UK seem to have not fallen victim to the latest outbreak.

https://theecologist.org/2022/aug/01/avian-flu-outbreak-killing-wild-birds?fbclid=IwAR1erpdLzQUUobsxWqc5oQM5e9hURsLjGxXpP0vVS1Eu7HzmlSDPbLXIc1E

Thank you for joining me today. Remember do your research on threats to our feathered friends due to migration. Think about it. Send me your findings by Thursday of next week. That would be 11 August on the Canadian Prairies. Take care everyone. See you soon!

  • If you said shooting for sport you would be correct.

Thank you to the following for their posts and/or streaming cams where I took my screen captures: SF Ospreys and Golden Gate Audubon, Notre Dame Eagles FB, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Mlade Buky White Storks, and the Osoyoos Osprey nest.

Early Thursday in Bird World

4 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! I was not going to write my newsletter until the end of the day but some of you might wish to know about the banding of the Royal Cam chick. There is a bit of other news as well. Both chicks at the Loch Garten Osprey platform fledged today – so every osprey chick in the UK has now fledged. Fantastic. I am getting notices that the cameras at the SWFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Harriet and M15 and the NEFlorida Bald Eagle nest of Gabby and Samson will go live in two weeks. Wow. Time is speeding by. Those cameras will turn on just about the time we have Osprey and falcon eggs in Australia.

The little fledgling Blue Jay has decided that it is time that I get some more peanuts outside for the three of them! Too funny. These wee ones can be quite loud when they want to be. They are getting their beautiful blue crests. I believe this is the smaller of the three – a little female -. She has that developing crest raised up high because she is excited! They are so cute and so animated.

The NZ DOC rangers will be banding the chicks on Taiaroa Head today. Here is the announcement by Ranger Sharyn Broni posted by Sharon Dunne on the Royal Cam FB page. There is no mention of the time. There will be an archived video of the banding of QT if you miss it!

I know many of you are anxious to also find out about the naming of QT. They may mention how this will be done this year. On line voting took place during the pandemic but this might change now.

Here is the link to the camera:

An Osprey rescue in Scotland that warms our hearts. You might have to keyboard the URL if it doesn’t give you an automatic link. It is the story of the collapse of the Balgavies Osprey nest mentioned a few weeks ago in my blog – this one has pictures!

scottishwildlifetrust.org.uk

The youngest chick on the Janakkalan Nest has yet to fledge. Titi often remains on the nest now that Boris is flying about for longer periods of time. With intruders and goshawks in the area, it is dangerous for Titi not to be flying.

Boris arrives in the bottom image to protect the nest. Hopefully s/he will take care of its sibling.

This brings me back to the mystery of why a normally wonderful Mum on a Finnish Osprey nest would attack her children. Nuppu on nest #4 attacked her youngest who had not fledged and the eldest who had fledged (much less) last week. Humans wondered how this loving mother could turn on her children. One of my readers ‘L’ suggested that it might have been to get the youngest to fly. Nuppu, knowing that a goshawk was in the area, wanted both of her chicks off the nest and flying free to lessen the threat of predation. I spent some time asking several osprey experts if this could be the case and they said, ‘absolutely’. The youngest did not fly and was predated when the intruder came to the nest. The eldest flew. So, there we are – the mystery of the physical attacks was to get the second chick off the nest and flying. Nuppu wanted to save her chicks, not harm them.

The only surviving fledgling on nest #4.

I do not understand why Titi on the Janakkalan nest has not flown yet. S/he has been doing some exercising of the wings. Hopefully soon!!!!! This is the nest without a female so Boris has taken on the job of security when Dad is not around.

The Sydney Sea Eaglets are doing fantastic. The tips of the wing feathers are beginning to show. You can see them coming in on both chicks – look carefully at the wings.

You will notice that the time between feedings is a little longer. That is because the eaglets can eat much more at a sitting than when they had just hatched and needed a few morsels of fish every 45-60 minutes from dawn to dusk.

SE30 even did a little beaking of 29 yesterday. Nothing major but it was cute when it sat up and gave it a bop.

Both had nice crops! Fish will not be stacked on the nest so much now because it could cause predators to become interested in the nest and the eaglets. They are not big enough yet to be out of danger. They need to be 28-30 days old.

It is raining in Orange and Diamond arrives at the scrape box on the water tower soaking wet! But with a full crop. Looking for eggs in a couple of weeks.

The high temperature for the day will be 23 C at the Osoyoos nest. What a change! A nice fish arrived early on the nest and Soo fed both of the chicks. They made it! Olsen and Soo you should receive a reward – you did fantastic in your strategies to protect the two osplets. Just look at them.

Right now the camera is fairly clear at the Fortis Exshaw Osprey nest in Canmore, Alberta. We can get a good look at those three good looking osplets! We are on fledge watch for this nest. At least two are flapping and starting to hover. It will not be long.

Karl II delivered a number of fishes just a few minutes ago to the four Black storklets in the Karula National Forest in Estonia. So far all is well. The storklets are hovering and jumping and practising their perching to prepare for fledge.

A portrait of the three females at the Loch Arkaig nest this year. From left to right: Willow, Sarafina, and Mum Dorcha (unringed). When we talk about the females having beautiful necklaces have a look at these three! Gorgeous.

I am not sure I have ever seen three females with such elaborate necklaces. Dorcha is really influencing the genetics at this nest. Bravo!

A blast from the past. The four Peregrine Falcon eyases being fed at the CBD-367 Collins Street scrape in Melbourne. Time is ticking away. The camera will be up and running in September. Just in case you forgot how incredibly cute little falcons are!!!!

Thank you for joining me this morning. Things look pretty good in Bird World. Take care. See you soon!!!!!!!!!

Thank you to the following for their posts and their streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Eagle Club of Estonia, Fortis Exshaw, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Osoyoos Ospreys, Charles Sturt Falcon Cam, Finnish Osprey Foundation, CBD-367 Collins Street Falcon Cam, and Royal Cam Albatross NZ.

Super Good News in Bird World

4 August 2022

It is a very early good morning to everyone- just past midnight. I am posting this newsletter early so that everyone will get to read the great news that is coming in – in case you do not already know. In the case of Victor and Little Bit, continued thanks to the wildlife rehabilitation staff that intervened and gave them a second chance on life.

My goodness, it is such a wonderful feeling as if you are floating on a cotton candy cloud when there is great news in Bird World. If you get emotional, I suggest you get the tissues out before reading further.

I want to thank ‘B’ and ‘L’ for alerting me to the special news about Victor in my inbox.

The Ojai Raptor Centre posted this announcement about Victor. When all of us were worrying he might not get well or he might not be able to feed himself ——– well, he is self-feeding and doing a grand job of it, too. He is in an outside enclosure not inside the clinic. Oh,, Victor, you have worked so hard to get well and all the staff at ORC have just being doing the best for you. Tears of joy, tears of joy.

Video of Victor self-feeding:

Video of Victor’s outdoor enclosure:

The other good news is, of course, Little Bit ND17. Images were taken and studied by several who go to the park on a daily basis to watch and photograph the Notre-Dame eagle family – Mum, Dad, ND15, ND16, and ND17 Little Bit. They have longed to get a good clear picture of 17 but wanted to be sure it was him. Here is the announcement in the Notre-Dame FB postings for today:

I was so skeptical when Little Bit was returned to the park without the ability to hunt his own prey. I am joyful to have been proven wrong! Notice the top right image. See how the hair kind of goes around in a partial donut shape. It reminds me of my late father-in-law who was bald but that circular band. It appears that some of the top is flat like strands of longer feathers covering up the places where feathers are missing. At the onset, I did not think he had a crop but, yes, that top right image appears to show that he has recently eaten. What a wonderful relief to see him looking and doing well. Thanks to everyone who worked hard to ensure Little Bit got a second chance on life and those birders on the ground who tried desperately to get images to reassure all of us. Thank you.

The Sea Eaglets are doing just fine, too. The crops of both of them are simply about to pop!!!!!!!

An hour later, Lady is urging them to have ‘just one more bite’! They are growing and will have a rapid growth spurt. Full crops will be the order of the day. Look at how the wings are forming and each has a cute little tail.

The two osplets on the Osoyoos Nest are looking good this evening. The forecast was correct and it has cooled down some – of course, it is still hot, just not as blistery. The chat for the streaming cams appears to be down. Not sure why unless it is all the spam.

Soo had a big crop at 10:46.

Another delivery.

Looks like one of the chicks got the last delivery and is self-feeding.

One crop fuller than the other chick who is fish crying.

I cannot give you a fish count but it appears that both chicks ate today and so did Soo. Fantastic.

Ervie is out flying about and finding nice fish for dinner. He must miss hanging out with Dad on the barge and going to the nest to eat his fish. I wonder if he will try to return to the barge after this breeding season?

It is good to know he is safe – GPS trackers certainly help with that.

In the case of each of these nests or particular fledglings, it is so good to know that they are either improving in care or are doing splendidly on their own. There has been no word on L3 or L4. We wait.

I want to mention a book called Beauty and the Beak. How Science, Technology, and a 3D-printed Beak rescued a Bald Eagle. It is by a pair of talented women – writer Deborah Rose and wildlife rehabilitator, Jane Veltkamp. I first heard of the efforts to save this particular Bald Eagle when I was looking for information about the McEuen Park eagles in Idaho. The intended audience would be children ages 8-12 (I think) but I also enjoyed the gorgeous photos and learning about how science and new technology saved Beauty’s life. It is another fantastic book about positive interventions. If you teach science or know someone who does, I would highly recommend this book. (Cost in Canada is $11.46 for the glossy paperback).

It is a beautiful story of compassion and the commitment of Jane Veltkamp to help Beauty the Bald Eagle.

My regular newsletter that normally appears around noon CDT during the month of August will appear in the early evening on 4 August.

Thank you so much for joining me with all these good news stories. Take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their postings and/or streaming cams where I took my screen captures: Notre Dame Eagles, Ojai Raptor Centre, Port Lincoln Ospreys and Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park.

Early Tuesday in Bird World!

2 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone! It looks like rain here on the Canadian Prairies – and when finally believe it is coming, the sun pops out. I am heading up north to check on the Ospreys along Lake Winnipeg. Fingers crossed! I may only make it as far as the nature centre.

Just some housekeeping. The NCTC streaming cam on Bella and Smitty’s nest has been hit by lightning. It will be replaced in time but not when the eagles are about. Phillipe Josse posted on the Notre Dame Eagles FB that all of the eaglets were seen flying about on 1 August. Great news. Victor Hurley reminds everyone that the CBD (Central Business District) 367 Collins Street Falcons generally lay their eggs around the end of August. The camera at the Boathouse Osprey nest in Maine is on the blink. I just about had a heart attack when I did not see 3 chicks in the nest yesterday when I went to their stream. Thankfully I finally figured out it was ‘Highlights’. Check in the left bottom corner if you go so the same thing does not happen to you. The word ‘Highlights’ will appear. The situation at the #4 nest in Finland where the mother attacked the youngest on the nest and the fledgling when it returned has calmed. No clear understanding of the reason behind the attacks but the youngest seemed to get the blunt of the wrath. No updates on L4 taken into care. Good news. The one surviving osprey from the Pitkin County Trail Platform (they were pulled off the nest by female caught in nesting material) remains in care at a wildlife rehab centre. The chick is now eating on its own and its feathers are growing in. Great news! That incident happened on 22 June.

Olsen delivered a very large fish on the Osoyoos nest at 1137 on 1 August (Monday). It was the 13th fish of the morning. Large and with its head. Soo fed the chicks til they were so full they could not eat another bite and then she took the fish to the perch where she enjoyed it.

Soo and BC and LC know Olsen is arriving.

Look at that nice fish! Olsen must have found a super spot to fish today even with the heat.

Everyone ate and ate.

After taking the fish up to the perch to eat her portion, Soo returned a nice piece to the nest.

There were more than 13 fish arriving at the nest of Soo and Olsen Monday. Another one came in at 18:58.

The chicks have eaten well and have spent much of the day with one or the other hanging their heads over the rim of the nest scaring the wits out of viewers. All is well!

Soo and Olsen got a bit of a break in the weather. It dropped to 33 today but….sadly another heat dome is coming in a week. Olsen has already delivered ​fish small fish at these times: 0521:46, 0533:10, 0541:22, 0620:46, 0625:11. A larger fish with head came at 0656:53 with the 7th fish at 0715:06 which was smaller and headless. If you count that is 7 fish by 0715 Tuesday. Olsen, you are amazing.

The good news at The Campanile is that the bonding rituals between Annie and Alden are increasing…and often they are sans Lindsay and Grinnell Jr. How lovely. Stay safe Annie and Alden!

If you did not see my earlier announcement, L4 was taken into care. He was found on the ground unable to fly during the evening of 31 July. Thank you to those who rescued him and took him to the Swanson Wildlife Clinic at Cornell. No updates so far.

Suzanne Arnold Horning caught Big Red, Arthur, and L2 on the campus Monday evening.

Big Red is moulting.
Arthur on the stacks.
L2 yelling for food.

It is fledge watch at the Black Stork nest of Karl II and Kaia. Yesterday it was raining which halted any thoughts of flying but, this morning the storklets are jumping around and flapping. Bonus is the oldest at 72 days with the other three at 66, 66, and 63 days.

The camera was off for awhile and it is unknown if they had a feeding or not. Yesterday Kaia brought in 1 feeding, Karl II travelled to the fish basket but it was empty because he went further to try and find fish. His transmitter stopped at 10:01 on 1 August. It is not know what the problem is and everyone is waiting not so patiently to see if data is uploaded today or if he appears at the nest with food. Fingers crossed. These are the only four Black Storklets that I am aware of in Estonia this year to survive.

Bonus is 77 days old and is the only surviving storklet of Jan and Janika of the original six.

Andor delivered a fish and Lilibet sure enjoyed it. The top image is the 30th of July.

Lilibet on 30 July 2022.

Then he delivered a fish and no one showed up.

Everyone began to question if Lilibet had left the territory. Lilibet has gone no where! She is around the nest a few minutes ago being quite loud – with what appears to be a nice crop.

Lancer is still calling Two Harbours home and Chase & Cholyn are busy delivering fish. Lancer has earned the name ‘Miss Sassy Pants’ by the Bald Eagle community. She practically tore Chase’s leg off with the delivery. — I am sure Mum and Dad do not mind. She will really be able to stand up for herself when she leaves the safety of the nest area.

The Sydney Sea Eaglets are ‘darling’. Just cute little fluff balls eating and growing. Start watching for the slightest hint of little black dots which are feathers coming in.

It is August and we have another month, perhaps, with Iris at the Hellgate nest in Missoula, Montana. For those unfamiliar, Iris is the oldest unbanded Osprey in the world believed to be 29ish. It is remarkable. Mrs G in the UK is their oldest at 22 years.

Iris spent much time at the nest earlier working and bringing in sticks and she has, on occasion, lately graced us with her beauty. She was there this morning when an intruder arrived. Louis went swiftly over to remove the visitor.

Each of us needs a good rescue story! It gives us faith in ‘humans’.

Dad at the Port Lincoln Osprey Barge seems fine. Bonding taking place!

That is a hop, skip, and a jump around the nests this morning. So far everything seems calm. It is a strange time of year. The US Ospreys are eating and preparing for migration at the end of August or beginning of September. We have eaglets in Sydney and we await the arrival of the eggs for Mum and Dad at the barge and the peregrine falcons at CBD and Orange. I do not know about you but I really need a ‘fix’ of little ospreys. Simply cannot wait.

Thank you for joining me today. Please take care everyone. See you soon.

Thank you to the following for their streaming cam where I took my screen captures: Montana Osprey Project, Cornell Bird Lab, Osoyoos Ospreys, Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre Sydney Olympic Park, Audubon Explore.org, Port Lincoln Osprey Project, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, and Suzanne Arnold Horning for her lovely pictures of Big Red and family.

Monday Morning in Bird World

1 August 2022

Good Morning Everyone!

Oh, one half of the sky is blue with cottonball-like clouds. The other side is a solid mass of heavy grey clouds. It is 22 C and more rain forecast for 1700. The Crows are already in the bird bath eating their ‘sandwiches’ and peanuts. Given a chance tens of sparrows gather in there after they have left. The squirrels are running about and the birds are flitting in and out. Dyson came to drink out of the bird bath yesterday and all the rabbits have been here. The weather is hot for here and having water out for the animals is, hopefully, helping them to cool down. It is so reassuring – just like when we check on the streaming cams and everyone is home!

The three young Crows are constantly with one another. Their flying is improving. The bird bath water is in constant change for one reason – everything is washed by the Covids. I wonder if it was to soften the shell of the peanut??

One of the fledgling Blue Jays waited its turn until the Crow departed.

This Blue Jay is yelling at Dyson! The squirrels do not wait in line – they just go and grab the peanuts. It is too funny. The juveniles are just getting their crests.

Poor Junior. He is moulting. If you see a Cardinal or Blue Jay looking scarce on top, they are not ill, just replacing their feathers.

Hello Dyson. Thank goodness the new bird bath is heavy enough that Dyson doesn’t go flying when he jumps up for a drink.

Adorable Hedwig. He spent about an hour eating the spilt seeds under the feeder. Hedwig was discovered under the Peony bush. He was such a wee rabbit. He never left the garden but ate the seeds as the birds flitted around him. He is never frightened by them. His burrow is somewhere else now but you can always count on his arrival around 1730 rain or shine, winter or summer. He’s an Eastern Cottontail.

Olsen really seems to have outdone himself on Sunday. As I begin to write this, there are two partial fish sitting on the nest. The chatters have been keeping close tabs and ‘H’ provided detailed time stamps. These are invaluable for viewers coming on line. Much appreciated. By 0900, Olsen had delivered 8 fish of varying sizes. Everyone was chock full of fish. It appears that there was some nibbling on the old fish (gosh they must be like dried fish now!) with another fish delivery at 18:33.

Soo has done a fabulous job keeping the chicks shaded. It is currently 37 C but rose to 40. Or 98.6 F to 104 F.

The nest still has horrific temperatures tomorrow. They seem to just keep adding on an additional day of heat. When did I ever believe I would say that 34 C was a welcome drop in temperature? The night will be welcome cooling off periods. The Osprey parents are doing the best they can and thank goodness those two chicks are feathered nicely this year.

Send positive thoughts, please. Soo and Olsen deserve success. In 2020 they lost a chick and one fell out of the nest and in 2021 the three died in the heat dome that stayed over the area. This year we have had one fall over the nest so let us keep fingers crossed. I think Soo and Olsen will succeed this year.

It is now Monday morning and Olsen has already brought at least five fish according to the chatters and here he is at 0656 feeding his babies fish number six!

I do not know if you have read the history of this nest but it is one of those great cooperative measures. FortisBC worked with the Town of Osoyoos put up a separate de-commissioned hydro pole for the Osprey and also donated the funds for the camera – the nest and streaming cam you are watching. They were proactive – indeed, it is in their best interests not to have the local power knocked out but, grateful, so grateful.

It is cooler at the Fortis Exshaw Nest in Canmore, Alberta. Mum and the trio are doing very well it seems.

Because it is in the same heat warning area, I have been checking on and off at the McEuen Park Osprey platform in Coeur d’ Alene, Idaho.

There were two of the fledglings on the nest when I popped in.

With all the heat warnings, it is nice to have something to laugh at and it is provided by Bukacek and the adult only nest. You might well remember that Bukacek had built a second nest for him and Betty. Having four large White storklets on the natal nest gets a little crowded. Now that the storklets are flying – they have taken over the new nest! Bukacek will have to build another!!!!!! Betty meanwhile lures them back to their own nest with food. Perfect. Ooops….they ate and left. Oh, goodness.

Beautiful Betty.

There has been some concern about a blood spot near the wing of SE30 on the Sydney Sea Eagles nest. What was the cause? Often the eaglets get fish blood or bird parts on their body but this does not seem to be that. It looks instead as if some feathers have clumped together either with fish juice or ps and they were, perhaps, pulling and it annoyed the eaglet who pulled them out and left a small bloody spot. The eaglet appears to be fine.

You can clearly see the spot on the right wing- and that enormous crop of SE29’s. 30 is eating well. No worries. Lady sometimes feeds it so much that 29 gets itself in a little knot. With the amount of prey coming on the nest there is no need for food competition – and even with feedings spreading a bit, everything should be fine. The eaglets are getting older. Getting ready to get some really itchy pin feathers soon. As long as food continues and Lady keeps up her remarkable feeding schedule..these two are going to grow and fledge.

There will not be any ringing or DNA tests unless one or both wind up in rehab after fledge. But I might be already inclined to guess that we have a really big sister in 29 and a little brother in 30.

We can always use good news in our lives. Here is another story of an eagle rescue that will warm your hearts! Thanks, ‘L’, much appreciated.

Our beautiful Victor. I love this photo of him standing on a low perch. You are progressing, Victor. Keep up the good work!

Since the rescue of Victor, some of us have been more than perplexed about where the zinc came from that poisoned his body. I have rattled my brain with several of you – flakes coming off of anything galvanized, warnings on garden hoses about zinc, the shale in the area contains zinc, etc. I really do not think our dear Victor sat and ate pennies knowingly. ‘C’ sent me the findings of a study by a Brazilian researcher. It has been translated by Google from the Portugese. If you are interested in how Victor might have gotten the zinc and how our contamination of the planet spreads to birds 10,000 miles away even…have a read.

Thank you, ‘C’. Much appreciated.

Title: “Not even the “end of the world” is free from human-caused pollution”

Animals that live in the waters of the Kerguelen archipelago, 3,000 km from the nearest inhabited region, are contaminated by metals such as cadmium and mercury.

Not even the “end of the world” is free from the pollution generated by humanity. Located in the south of the Indian Ocean, 3,300 km from Madagascar, the nearest inhabited region, the Kerguelen archipelago, formed by about 300 islands and islets, is contaminated by metals such as cadmium and mercury, copper and zinc. The observation is made by Brazilian researcher Caio Vinicius Cipro, a postdoctoral fellow at the Oceanographic Institute of the University of São Paulo (IO-USP), in two studies he carried out at the University of La Rochelle, in France, in partnership with scientists there.

Of volcanic origin, Kerguelen is 4 thousand kilometers south of India and 2 thousand kilometers north of Antarctica. The archipelago belongs to that country and is administratively part of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands (TAAF). There is currently a scientific station and structures associated with it. “There is also fishing activity due to France’s exclusive economic exploitation zone”, says Cipro. “Biologically, there are countless species of birds and marine mammals that have established colonies on the island and many others, in addition to significant amounts of fish and invertebrates thanks to the high primary productivity of local food. There are also several species introduced by humans, such as mice and reindeer, and some plants.”

He says that the idea for the study came during a period when he worked as a guest researcher at the University of La Rochelle. “My supervisor at the time, Professor Paco Bustamante, had told me about a dataset he had obtained years before, which he began working on during his own doctorate, and whose publication he never had time to pursue,” he says. “I volunteered to carry out the task and write the publication.”

Cipro then went on to study the occurrence of four chemical elements (cadmium, copper, mercury, zinc and selenium) in more than 30 species of invertebrates and fish, most of them at a lower trophic level (of the food chain). The objective was to understand how the concentrations of these inorganic pollutants behave at these lower levels that will influence organisms above them in the food chain.

Cipro’s first study was carried out in 2014, shortly after he arrived in France, on samples that had been collected by Bustamante’s team in the southern summers of 1997 and 1998. The Brazilian scientist analyzed metal contamination in a species of bird, the black shearwater petrel (Procellaria aequinoctialis). “We found contamination by cadmium, copper, mercury, selenium and zinc”, he says. “An article about the work was published in 2016 in the scientific journal Polar Biology.”

The second research was carried out in 2018 and yielded another article, published in the same journal. “In this case, we analyzed the levels of contamination of the same metals, with the exception of selenium – there were no conditions at the time to do this with this element in the laboratory at the University of La Rochelle – in 18 species of fish and 11 of invertebrates”, explains Cipro . The result of the work also pointed to the contamination of animals by metals.

According to Cipro, what can be concluded from the results of his research is that in this specific case of Kerguelen, cadmium values ​​varied much more than mercury values ​​(four orders of magnitude against one) and depended more on specificity in food ecology. and in the habitat than at the level of the food chain plain and simple.

In other words, the results of the studies showed that, contrary to what happens in most cases, the concentrations of pollutants found in animals depended little on their position in the food chain, but more on specific mechanisms of physiology and exposure, in such a way that predators from lower trophic levels could be more subject to some contaminants than others from higher positions.

This means, according to Cipro, that work with species of higher trophic level or sentinels needs more in-depth food ecology studies before reaching certain conclusions and that the food chain by itself does not mean much in this environment. “Furthermore, my research provides solid foundations on the exposure to which predators are subject, as in most cases this discussion remained on hypothetical terrain due to lack of field data,” he explains.

The work also showed a possible influence of a local secondary source of contaminants, probably the bird colonies themselves, a hypothesis confirmed in the Antarctic environment during his current research project. Going into more detail, Cipro explains that the analyzed metals have natural sources, but human activity certainly plays a bigger role than them in general. For mercury, for example, current emissions are estimated to be three to five times higher than before the industrial age. This element can reach the Kerguelen archipelago from dumps made by factories located 10,000 kilometers away.

Nevertheless, locally, in addition to bird colonies, some other natural sources may be significant, such as certain rocks and fossil fuels. “In the case of bird colonies, some studies that I proposed suggested and later confirmed their role as a local and relevant source of some elements and also of organic pollutants”, says Cipro. “In Kerguelen, we raised this hypothesis, comparing mussels from inside and outside the Gulf of Morbihan, and it seemed to be confirmed by the results obtained.”

The Dad at the Janakkalan Nest, Red CCL, continues to deliver the fish. The chatters have nicknamed the pair. Boris is the oldest and Titi is the youngest. The fish are so big that they take turns with no need to squabble. Titi is on the left. He has not figured out – yet – to hold the fish down with its talons.

Dad arrives with another fish at 1805. Titi is in the back with the huge crop from eating the fish in the image above. Boris is going to claim this one and Titi is absolutely too full to care! Lovely. Thanks, Dad.

The four Black Storklets on the nest of Karl II and Kaia are really wanting a food delivery. While they wait it is raining – they shake off their feathers, flap about, and jump on and off the perch. Kaia arrives with food at 16:58, the last image.

Just look at this beautiful juvenile Red-tail Hawk, L4. Stunning. L2 and L4 will probably be soaring in the thermals soon and leaving the Campus. Every moment with them is special as it is with Big Red and Arthur.

The latest update on L3 from the Cornell Lab:

L3 is gorgeous. Looking forward to her release when she is all healed.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is wonderful to have such good news in Bird World. To my knowledge, all of the UK Ospreys have fledged. They will be eating and gaining weight as will their mothers for migration. Soon these flights will be charted. In the meantime continue to enjoy them. The same with the storks! Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, websites, and postings where I took my screen captures: Osoyoos Ospreys, McEuen Park, Coeur d’Elene, Idaho, Sydney Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Cornell Bird Lab, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Mlade Buky Storks, Eagle Club of Estonia and Looduskalender, Ojai Raptor Centre, and Fortis Exshaw.

Sarafina flies, Too many fish at Osoyoos, and other good news in Bird World

31 August 2022

Good Morning! I hope this finds all of you well. For those of you waiting to see Sarafina fledge, she did it at 0655 Sunday morning, 31 July. Congratulations to Louis and Dorcha and to all at Loch Arkaig!

I am so glad that Saturday is over! This means that if the forecast is correct, the nests in the Pacific Northwest that are broiling will begin to get some relief from the heat in two days. Gosh, that seems like such a long time but they have weathered extreme heat for nearly a week and all are still with us.

Olsen and Soo have really done an amazing job keeping the two osplets in the shade on Saturday and, well, anyone who has ever fished know that the fish go down deep to get into cooler water. Ospreys are only able to dive 1m or 3 feet below the surface of the water – so they need those fish swimming around near the top not going deep to get cooler. By 0930 Olsen had delivered quite a number of fish, apparently some better sized than others. I did not count them. There was one delivery around around 19:30ish. It appeared that the two chicks were super full and Soo got some nice fish, too. — They look good at the end of today. Such a relief.

‘H’ sent this image of the ‘unwanted’ fish.

At 08:55 Sunday morning, One chick is sleeping on a fish piece, the unwanted is still there, and Soo has a super nice crop. I sure hope Olsen got some good fish, too. This family is depending on him! And Olsen, you get the gold star for the week. You and Soo are doing amazing.

On Saturday, Ferris Akel ended his tour, as always, with a stop at the Cornell Campus home to Big Red and Arthur. He found L4 prey calling to Mum and Dad. Big Red was also located.

Oh, my goodness, what a handsome fledgling. L4 has lovely light grey-blue eyes that will get darker and darker turning into an exquisite espresso colour in adulthood. He will also get his red tail when he is a year old.

L4
L4
L4
Big Red

The White-Bellied Sea Eagle nest in the Sydney Olympic Forest is becoming much calmer. There is plenty of prey. Lady feeds SE29 and 30 still about every hour. I noticed that the feedings are getting a little longer and that both chicks have nice crops at the end. It will not be long until there are fewer feedings with the chicks consuming much more prey.

What to expect as we end week 2 and prepare for week 3? The chicks will have doubled their size. You might also notice that their shape is changing – they are getting longer and so is their beak! We will begin to see them climb out of the nest or egg cup exploring their surroundings and pecking at leaves. By week 4, some pin feathers on the wings will begin to show.

The last feeding before night fall in the forest. If you look carefully you can see how the down is ‘looking different’. There will be little ‘black dots’ soon.

If you love White-tail Eagles then you will be excited to know that the oldest WTE couple on Mull Island just fledged their 25th chick! Skye is 28 and Frisa is 30. Look at that beautiful baby!

https://www.birdguides.com/news/uks-oldest-known-white-tailed-eagle-pair-fledge-25th-chick/?fbclid=IwAR2VaicG4ZgKYXqWASf-x4qjwOstyti3NUx0uEiQnEJ51PY8waezLbHO-ig

Another article about our dear Victor’s recovery.

Please note that Victor is not standing on a towel but has moved to a low perch. Lovely.

https://www.ojaivalleynews.com/news/sick-bald-eagle-recovering-at-orc/article_c4540a4a-0f08-11ed-91fc-4ba35f94378b.html?fbclid=IwAR1dT0-m8dw_Q5mF4p4ZyPyaGIuZ6Wo_9uuVq1-WpQ4PLlLe3CI0LF-Fs3Q

I am certain that everyone will agree that you can see the improvements in Victor. The top image is a couple of days ago- the lower one is when Victor began his physio.

I saw no images but on thee Notre Dame chat, Little Bit ND17 was seen by someone at the park. That is good news.

Our other lad, Ervie, really flew about Port Lincoln yesterday!

You may recall that the Port Lincoln Osprey Project carried in parts of a new tower platform nest for the couple at Turnby Island. Previously their eggs had been predated by foxes on the island. The new tower was to stop that predation with a plan in place to rid the island of its invasive fox population. The time for egg laying is near – and look what is causing the ospreys to alert.

Port Lincoln says this foxes’ days are numbered. He cannot, however, get to the eggs which were previously laid on the ground. Thank you Port Lincoln!

The two Ospreys at the Janakkalan nest are safe from the Goshawk again. They eat and sleep, sleep and eat…

Eating..

Dad with another delivery.

Last but he could never be least – one of our ‘saviours’ of the year – Alden. Alden who insured that Annie’s eggs and the last of Grinnell’s chicks would hatch – with maybe a contribution of his own! (No word on that yet). Alden finally found a little time to ‘loaf’.

Thank you so much for joining me today. It is a little wet on the Canadian Prairies – again. My garden is like a jungle. The three fledgling Blue Jays and the three fledgling Crows continue to visit. Images to follow tomorrow. I hope that all of you are well and enjoying some time in nature today. See you soon!

Thank you to the following for their streaming cams, FB postings, etc which have become my screen captures: Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Osoyoos Ospreys and ‘H’, Sydney Sea Eagles @Birdlife Australia Sydney Olympic Forest, BirdGuides, Ojai Raptor Centre, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Port Lincoln Ospreys, and Cal Falcons.

Early Wednesday in Bird World

27 July 2022

I am starting to write tomorrow’s blog on the evening of the 26th because there is good news at Osoyoos. It is a lovely evening on the Canadian Prairies. It is nearly 2100 and the garden animals have departed to their sleeping quarters. I would love to know where they go. It is cooler here, we have had lots of rain and the hot weather seems to have passed – for now. The clouds, however, are coming and looking strange and you can hear thunder in the distance.

It was certainly a relief to go onto the Osoyoos Osprey cam and see the time stamps that ‘A-M’ had listed for the fish deliveries by Olsen. Fish at 0510, 0524, o554, 0616, 0943, 1103 and 1633. Apparently all of the fish were a good size but the first one. This is fantastic. It just seems unthinkable that anything could cause these two beautiful osplets not to fledge.

It was also a good evening because Ferris Akel was on the Cornell campus in Ithaca looking for Big Red and her family.

Big Red looks as if she is beginning to moult. L2 has a much whiter than L4 but in these images it is truly hard to tell which juvenile is which. What is important is that all are safe and sound.

One of our readers, ‘J’ has written about the Sydney Sea Eagles SE30 and its attacks on SE29 when the two are alone on the nest. Yes, it is true that is happening and yes, 30 does, at some feedings, become submissive to the older sibling which is larger.

I remember when I began watching the Sea eagles. One of the moderators at the time told me that typically the second egg is the ‘insurance ‘ egg. It is only there if something should happen to the first hatch. Of course, I was horrified. At the time I had not had any experience with some of the other eagle species where the eldest hatch always kills the youngest. In some instances, the age difference impacts this even though there is lots of food on the nest. In other instances, it is simply ‘standard practice’ for the eldest to kill the youngest. This is known as obligate siblicide. I want to be clear. I am not saying this is what is happening at the Sydney Sea Eagle nest in 2022.

At the Sydney Sea Eagle nest there has been plenty of fish so far this year. The chicks hatched relatively close together and, observations over the past five years show that there has always been some initial competition on this nest;; once this resulted in siblicide. In fact, sibling rivalry with SE23 began on day 5 in 2019. The rivalry ended in week 6. In 2018, there was also sibling rivalry with SE21 becoming dominant often pecking 22 who would retreat in submission. That rivalry period lessened after 3 weeks. Sadly, there was a period of 6 days when the male did not bring any food to the nest. The female hunted but the prey was so much less and SE22 was constantly attacked, becoming weaker and finally dying on day 33. In 2019, 2020 and in 2021 both eggs hatched each year and both chicks fledged. So the last time there was siblicide on this nest was 2018 and that was the result of 6 days when the male did not bring food.

For those constantly watching the Sea Eagles nest, just take a deep breath. Hope for continued good prey deliveries and wait. There is a strict no intervention policy at the nest (or there has been in the past) and I have no reason to believe that this has changed. Wishing it to be so will only cause personal angst and frustration. If things get bad, this is what I suggest – take a three day break. Then go in and check on the nest and see how the younger one is doing.

Whenever individuals – and we all have – worried about dominance competition, I like to go back and look at one of the videos from the SW Florida Bald Eagle nest. In particular, one of E19 and E20 who, at the end, were the best of friends. The year prior, many will remember E17 having to go to ‘time out’ at the CROW clinic when it was so aggressive to E18. They were inseparable twins when they fledged.

Here is the announcement for the discussion with Christian Sasse and those wonderful folks from GROWLS. Please note the time in the posting below. This will take place on YouTube.

For those of you that love those UK Osprey nests, take note. I was reminded by my calendar and friends in Wales that the countdown to migration has started…by 4 weeks from today, the females should have or be departing, followed by the fledglings and finally the males. So enjoy them while you can!

Just a few images from the UK nests this morning.

Idris and Telyn by the Dyfi River
Idris, Telyn, and one of the fledglings hanging out by the river with the cows.
Idris at Dyfi
Aran with one of the boys from 2022 at Glaslyn
Aran on the perch, Mrs G and kids on nest
Mrs G and three in nest
Dylan at Llyn Clywedog
Dorcha with Willow and Sarafina at Loch Arkaig

Of course, migration begins in North America also. If you want to keep track of North American migration in the east, there is no better place to go to see the numbers than Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania. What is Hawk Mountain? Founded in 1934 by Rosalie Edge, Hawk Mountain became a sanctuary for migrating birds – not a killing club. Edge initially purchased 1400 acres of land which has now been extended to 2600. The thermals over the mountains are perfect for the migrating birds to soar. You can visit the centre and even take part in the great migration count or you can watch the numbers increase from August to mid-December. Here is the link to the chart for the Hawk Mountain fall migration count.

https://www.hawkmountain.org/conservation-science/hawk-count

If you are wondering about the drama playing out at the Whirley Crane in SF Bay home to Rosie and Richmond, here is the latest news. Please not that Brooks has come to the nest at least once but was chased away by the visitor.

The day has started early in Osoyoos with Soo feeding a small fish to the two chicks and herself. Hoping for lots and lots of early fish today as those temperatures are set to soar in the afternoon.

Those two are growing and they are so cute….wish for fish everyone!

There is sad news coming out of Estonia. The camera at the nest of Eedie had gone down. One of Jan and Janika’s chicks had been fostered there. Urmas has just announced that all four of the Black Storklets have been predated. This is a terrible loss. Of the three nests, Eedie, Jan and Janika, and Karl II and Kaia – only 4 storklets survive. The four in the images below will now have to fledge and then survive flying through the Ukrainian War zone and other dangerous places to reach Africa during the fall migration.

At the Karula National Forest nest of Karl II and Kaia, there is good news. Karl II did find the second fish basket that Urmas set up for him. This is wonderful as the feedings had been getting quite lean. Here is Karl arriving with a feeding for the four. Now, Bonus, the foster chick on this nest is the only surviving storklet of Jan and Janika.

One of the chicks at the Janakkalan Osprey nest in Finland is really getting some height to their hovering. Expect a fledge soon! It is so exciting. So much has happened on this nest – illness and presumed death of the Mum and starvation death of a sibling, an intruder – that we shall really celebrate when these two surviving youngsters fledge.

One last check this morning and that is at the Boathouse. The dancing diamonds from the sunrise make it nearly impossible to see what is happening on the nest but…it looks as if one of the chicks of Dory and Skiff is trying self-feeding! Oh, fantastic.

Thank you so very much for joining me this morning. Keep sending your best wishes to Osoyoos for fish deliveries today as those temperatures climb to 41 C or 102.5 F. Take care everyone. See you soon!

Thanks to the following for their streaming cams, videos, and/or FB posts where I took my screen captures: Osoyoos Ospreys, Ferris Akel Tours, Audubon Explore.org, Sydney Sea Eagles@Birdlife Australia Discovery Centre, Sydney Olympic Park, Finnish Osprey Foundation, Dyfi Ospreys, Bywyd Gwyllt Glaslyn, CarnyXWild, Eagle Club of Estonia, Friends of Loch Arkaig and the Woodland Trust, Lady Hawk, SF Osprey Cam with Richmond and Rosie, and Bald Eagles 101.