Peregrine falcon dustbath at Singapore building


This video is called Peregrine Falcon checking out a new condo, July 2015, Singapore.

From the Bird Ecology Study Group in Singapore about this:

In July 2015 Wong Weng Fai photographed a Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus) having a dust-bath on the balcony floor of a yet to be completed apartment in a high-rise building.

Many birds keep their feathers in good condition by taking dust-bath LINK. They lie on the dusty ground and moves vigorously about to get the dirt particles onto their feathers. This helps to get rid of ectoparasites as well as stale secretions from their oil glands.

In the case of this falcon, it found a quiet spot in this uncompleted high-rise building.

The presence of sand particles as a result of building activities and the absence of workers in the unit made this an ideal site for its “bath’. It would not be long before the building would be completed and no opportunity for the peregrine to return. Maybe the photographer would then have an opportunity to document other birds taking shower baths?

Other methods of keeping their feathers in top condition include water bath LINK, preening LINK and anting LINK.

Cornell red-tailed hawk chicks have fledged


This video from the USa is called Cornell Hawks Highlights 2014.

From the Cornell Lab of Ornithology in the USA:

June 24, 2015

Up, up, and away…

One by one, the Cornell Hawks nestlings have departed the nest for their first flights. The oldest (nicknamed “F1”) took wing on June 21 and returned the next day to the platform. The youngest (F3) was the next to go, leaping from the platform at midday on June 22 after being harassed a bit by its remaining sibling. Not to be outdone, F2 departed the nest a few hours after F3, and now the young Red-tailed Hawks are busily exploring the nearby rooftops and treetops. Although Big Red and Ezra will continue to provide food and guidance for the fledgling hawks for another two months, the hawks will be seen on camera less as they range more widely.

Watch the Cam.

Hawk Chat Closing

With an empty nest now, the Cornell Hawks live chat is scheduled to wind down this coming Sunday, June 28, from 5:00 P.M. to 7:00 P.M. EDT. We’re looking forward to celebrating the season with another spectacular closing this year. Thanks to everyone for watching and sharing the experience!

Cornell young red-tailed hawks fledging?


This video from the USA is called Cornell Hawks 2015-Post-Hatch.

The Cornell Lab of Ornithology in the USA writes:

June 16, 2015

Here Today, Gone Tomorrow?

The hour is rapidly approaching when the young Cornell Hawks will take their first flight! If past years are any indication, one nestling will likely leave the nest in the next couple days, with its siblings soon to follow (click for an overview of the dates). Viewers have been on the edges of their seats during animated bouts of “wingercizing” and awkward near-falls as the young hawks explore ever closer to the platform’s edge. But between these bursts of activity you’re likely to see them still clustered together in the nest, watching the hours pass until their world widens.

Even after the hawks leave the nest, Big Red and Ezra will continue to look after them. Parents catch birds and small mammals to feed the youngsters for their first three weeks after fledging and may help supplement their youngsters’ diets for eight weeks or more while the young learn to hunt on their own. We’ll also share reports from our Birders-on-the-Ground (BOGs) who keep an eye out on campus as the young stray farther from the nest. During this time, the cam will stay active as our volunteer cam operators search for the young hawks amid the rooftops and lightposts of central Cornell campus.

Don’t miss out on the first flight! Join us for chat and share the excitement with the community. Watch the Cam.

Young kestrels cleaning their feathers, video


This video is about young kestrels in a nestbox in the Netherlands.

They are over three weeks of age now, and changing from baby down to adult plumage.

They are cleaning their feathers.

Natuurkieker Coby made this video.

Kestrel nest in Meijendel: here.

Great horned owls, red-tailed hawks, new study


This video from the USA says about itself:

Great Horned Owl Hooting Territorial Evening Call At Sunset

31 December 2012

Great Horned Owl (Bubo virginianus) calling for it’s mate on Dixon Branch of White Rock Creek in Dallas, Texas. This particular owl was hooting a territorial call for another owl that can be faintly heard some distance away beginning after the call around the 1:50 mark. The owls call to each other in a duet before finding each other for night hunting and nest building.

Found from the Arctic to the tropical rainforest, from the desert to suburban backyards, the Great Horned Owl is one of the most widespread and common owls in North America. Capable of killing prey larger than themselves, the Great Horned Owl is one of the larger winged predators in the United States.

Often heard but rarely seen the birds are very difficult to photograph since they are nocturnal. This video was shot using Canon Magic Lantern software which allows for extreme low light photography. It was also filmed at a considerable distance giving the owl plenty of space to act naturally. The bird was a couple hundred feet from the camera. It’s important to keep a code of ethics when around large predators such as this. They need a wide berth to not be stressed.

From Transactions of the Kansas Academy of Science in the USA:

Landscape Differences around Nests of Great Horned Owls and Red-Tailed Hawks

William Langley

Butler Community College, El Dorado, Kansas

Nesting territories of great-horned owls (Bubo virginianus) and red-tailed hawks (Buteo jamaicensis) frequently overlap, with the owls using nests of other raptors. Records of use over a 22-year period in one locality were used to distinguish nesting sites used exclusively by great horned owls, exclusively by red-tailed hawks, and those used by both.

To determine the occurrence of various landscape characteristics within the proximity of a nest structure, I measured the total area of various land use types, total perimeter length, and the size of patches across six different land use types i.e., agriculture, pasture, residential, tree, pond, and roadside within circular plots around nests used by breeding pairs.

The landscape features surrounding nests of great horned owls differed from those surrounding red-tailed hawk nests in total perimeter length and size of patch. These differences are consistent with the fact that great horned owls hunt from perches primarily at night using sensory modalities different than diurnal hunting red-tailed hawks.

Dutch marsh harrier, all the way to Ghana and back


This video, from Spain, shows a female marsh harrier, a red kite and a raven quarreling about food.

Translated from the Dutch ornithologists of Werkgroep Grauwe Kiekendief:

Thursday, May 21, 2015

A newcomer to the GPS logger research is marsh harrier “Roelof”, an adult male provided last summer with a GPS logger. Roelof returned this spring to East Groningen, with a logger packed with GPS positions. He turned out to have had a highly remarkable journey! …

Roelof returned on April 15, 2015 in East Groningen, where he presented himself at the local antenna network where we can remotely read stored GPS data. …

In the autumn of 2014 Roelof flew via Spain to his first wintering area in Senegal, where he arrived on 27 September. This route falls exactly within the narrow migration flyway which is usual for marsh harriers. Christiane Trierweiler et al. described that harriers do not remain all winter in a single area, but during the winter they move to southern areas as the northern areas get dry. These are mostly trips of several hundred kilometers.

Roelof left his first wintering area on November 10 to land about 500 kilometers to the south in Guinea. To our surprise Roelof did not stay there until the end of the winter, but he left the area on January 26 to fly 1,700 kilometers along the West African south coast, eventually ending up all the way in Ghana! Ghana is really far away for a Dutch marsh harrier, outside the ‘normal’ wintering area.

On the shores of Lake Volta

In Ghana Roelof stayed around the shores of Lake Volta. This huge lake is probably a good wintering place for marsh harriers and the question is how he ever ‘found’ this place. Did he come here in his youth by chance, making the place by now a fixed point in his annual schedule? Or perhaps Roelof has eastern genes telling him that in winter this is the place to be? Monitoring young harriers will be the key to answering this kind of exciting questions.

Roelof left the Volta Lake on February 28, keeping a northwesterly course. Aided by a firm tailwind he was ‘blown’ across the Sahara until he reached the ocean coast in the Western Sahara. From there he continued his journey towards the northeast, where he made two short stops in Morocco (as befits a marsh harrier). From Morocco, he flew straight back to exactly the same reed bed in eastern Groningen …

This photo by Ben Koks shows marsh harrier Roelof, on the left, and his female partner. On Roelof’s back, one can see his GPS logger.

Birds of prey news from Slovakia


This is a video about a female marsh harrier, feeding on a hare which had died in Germany.

Tomas Novak, from Bratislava in Slovakia, writes on Twitter today:

7 bird of prey species spotted on Sunday: Marsh & Montagu’s Harrier, Red & Black Kite, W[hite-]T[ailed] Eagle, Buzzard, Kestrel.