This morning I saw the FIRST CHICK.
That is Dad Petruchio landing with a fish.
The chick is sitting in front of Mom Kate.
The chick is a spiky white fuzz ball with a shiny black beak, looking slightly to the right.
I have enclosed 2 copies of the same photo because it can be hard to see chicks at this stage.
The red arrow in the second photo is pointing at the chick.
First Nest: Hatch!!!
Since I cannot see into the nest, I have to reply on indirect evidence that an egg(s) have hatched.
Mom Kate is showing one of the behaviors.
In her talons she has a mat of litter that has been soiled by the chick.
All birds keep their nests very clean and remove the soiled nesting materials.
Eagles take the used litter far from the nest before letting it drop to the ground.
Dad Petruchio is showing the other good indicator that there has been a hatch: feeding behavior.
Here he is bringing a small fish to the nest.
He then stands just within the nest, pulls the fish apart and leans over to feed the chick.
It didn’t take Petruchio more than a minute to feed the small chick.
Dad Petruchio often takes a moment, as in this photo, and just watches the chick.
Ranger Nest: Fledgling Landing
Landing are the difficult part of flight – whether you are bird or pilot. The fledgling came back in from his first flight. Dad Ranger had brought a fish to the nest. No way was the fledgling going to let his sibling, who hadn’t fledged yet, have a single bite of the fish. Only, oops, the fledgling misjudged his landing by several feet and ended up on a branch below the nest. Even an adult eagle would have trouble launching from underneath the nest and flying upwards. So, what to do? Well, if your wings aren’t going to get you out of the fix, climb…yep, climb back up to the nest.
The feud continued this morning, bright and early.
Dad osprey decided to buzz the bald eagle nest, again.
When Dad osprey launched from his perch I could’t see either parent eagle.
As you can see, mom Ranger showed up ready to fully engage with the much smaller bird.
The eagle chicks watched intently.
Dad osprey danced a side-ways jig and dove into the trees with Mom Ranger right behind him.
No birds got hurt, but the feathers continue to stay ruffled.
This morning I had gotten down the path and put my folding chair in place.
Went to pick up my camera … an eagle screamed in the tree right over my head.
My heart just stopped, thinking that one of the chicks had fledged and crossed the cove to my side.
I didn’t want to spook it so I bent over to pick up my chair to back out of the area when a shadow exploded over me.
It wasn’t a chick at all, oh, no, it was Mom Ranger and she was angry. Yikes!
But it wasn’t me she wanted to take on … it was dad osprey.
The ospreys have been in an uproar since their chicks hatched and are now a good size for eagle snacks.
The ospreys have been almost constantly chasing the adult eagles away from the osprey nest.
The eagle chicks watched Mom flash by above them.
You can see in the last photo that Mom Ranger had had enough of the harassment and meant business.
Both adult birds flew into the sun and I lost them.
Several minutes later I got my breath back and marveled at the surprises Jordan Lake shows me.