Author Topic: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season  (Read 17860 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« on: December 23, 2014, 08:03:04 PM »
This thread is about the Olsen Farm nest.
Now we're having to be a little more specific because there are currently two nests on Olsen Farm; this one is at the more secluded east end, far away from the houses. Last year the Heron Rocks eagles migrated to the western edge of the farm; we're going to continue calling them the Heron Rocks eagles and see how that goes.

We've been aware of this particular nest since 2012. Someone fishing nearby heard screeps in the area in the summer of 2011, so the nest must have already been active then. Last year these eagles took a break, but in each of the two previous years the nest produced 2 healthy eaglets.

Click here to see last year's postings and find links to the previous years.

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2014, 08:21:03 PM »
I paddled through this nest's territory on November 15.

I found two adult eagles perched on trees near the nest.
November 15, 3:10



3:13



Here's a picture of the nest. It sure looks like it's been here a while. I'm not seeing any fresh branches from this year but this is a difficult angle.




Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2014, 08:31:03 PM »
A lot of seabirds winter near this nest. There were Buffleheads, Red-breasted Mergansers, and many many American Wigeons. They were all very shy but I managed to get close enough for a photo of this lovely lady Wigeon.

November 15, 3:59






The offshore rocks were covered with great big fat sea lions and a lot of cormorants were perched there also.
A busy territory!

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #3 on: May 04, 2015, 10:01:00 PM »
Yesterday afternoon May 3, I stopped near the top of Ford Cove hill to see if I could glimpse anything in this nest.

I did! There was a white head showing. I've got a backlog of photos before I can get to these, but I do have evidence!
Looks like this nest is active again, after a year of break.

Offline Cawatcher

  • HEGPS
  • Member
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 9,178
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2015, 05:44:42 AM »
wonderful winterwren!

Offline gmadeb3

  • HEGPS
  • Member
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 727
    • My Flickr Page
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2015, 12:56:16 PM »
That is great Wren,  can't wait to see what you have to show :)
A smile is the universal welcome- Max Eastman

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2015, 01:33:21 AM »
Here's what I saw: the Olsen Farm nest tree, from the top of Ford Cove hill.

A bit of the nest visible, and a white head, moving around... Could it be a feeding? Click to enlarge.
May 3, 4:50 pm 

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #7 on: July 04, 2015, 10:01:19 PM »
I checked this nest today and saw one eaglet but I'm pretty sure I heard a duet of screeps at one point. These eaglets are pretty quiet compared to the Hope-like little screeper next door at the Heron Rocks nest!

Hopefully my photos will show more.

On the way there, I was surprised to see other shore birds with the year-round Killdeers. Looked like a small mixed flock of Western and Least Sandpipers, about twenty in all. The Killdeers looked really big in comparison!
I will have some photos of those also.
This is the earliest I've ever seen returning shorebirds, but I haven't been observing for long enough to know if this is usual or not.

Offline boonibarb

  • HEGPS
  • Forum Guide
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 8,927
    • my flickr photos
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #8 on: July 08, 2015, 08:58:14 AM »

i was driving up the hill from Ford Cove with my stash of salmon fish & yam chips!
No one was behind me, so i was going slowly, looking & listening.
i heard distinctive, loud, interesting cries!
So i pulled over to go looking for them.
This is very steep terrain here, well treed, i could hear one Bird RIGHT THERE!
But do you think i could spot them?
There were two, one closer, one a bit further, down the hill.
i figured i*d record the vocalizations at least.
The calls sounded a LOT like an Eaglet, but had a harsher tone to them.
Were these Red-tailed Hawk fledglings perhaps?

july 5 2015 16:59 - Red-tailed Hawk fledglings calling

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Mz42fZUA0o" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Mz42fZUA0o</a>

My dinner was getting cold, & probably eaten by Otto.
i would start to walk away, then the calls would draw me back again.
But no sightings, darnit.

july 5 2015 17:05 - Red-tailed Hawk fledglings calling


<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8SbnpmV4BM" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l8SbnpmV4BM</a>
wooohoooo!

Offline Cawatcher

  • HEGPS
  • Member
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 9,178
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #9 on: July 08, 2015, 04:06:10 PM »
 :eclove Sure sounds like Redtailed fledglings booni! Did Otto say thank you???  :mhihi

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #10 on: July 09, 2015, 11:52:34 PM »
Oh!!!!!!   :eceek
That's what I heard from the beach when I was checking the Olsen Farm nest!
I could hear the loud screep from the Heron Rocks eaglet, and the not-so-loud screeps from the Olsen Farm eaglets, and then that third sound from way back on the hill; I remember thinking that it sounded like another eaglet but not quite!

It was so intriguing, on my return I drove up the hill really slowly and with the windows wide open, hoping to figure out what it was, but there was no sound at that point.

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #11 on: July 20, 2015, 10:15:42 PM »
I just listened to Booni's recordings again. What an amazing sound. And certainly loud enough for me to hear it from the shore.

Well, that same day when I heard it from shore, before I reached the eagles' nest I stopped in my tracks to watch some other birds. There are a few Killdeer territories on that beach but it soon became obvious that the killdeers had company.

More shore birds! I keep getting surprised by how early some of them return from the breeding grounds.
Look how small this one looks next to the resident Killdeer.
July 4, 10:30 am


These ones were the most numerous, and easy to identify: Western Sandpipers with the rusty-orange cap and cheeks of their breeding plumage.



I thought there were two species aside from the Killdeer, but look...
We have two Westerns here, and the one on the right is a Least Sandpiper, with yellowish legs and fine bill... No real surprise here. But what about that greyish one in the middle? He's the same that was next to the Killdeer in the first photo.
Interesting short stubby bill.



I was taught that if I believe I am seeing a Semipalmated Sandpiper, I should look for other possible IDs, because although they often migrate through BC they are not common in this area. But a Sanderling would look larger than the other sandpipers, and definitely the bill is not a Western Sandpiper's. So I'm fairly positive that this is indeed a Semipalmated, my first one.


So here they are side by side in a lucky shot: Least, Semipalmated, Western.




Semipalmated and Western side by side.



One more shot half an hour later, on my return from the nest. Three Least Sandpipers, with their fine, slightly curved bill and their yellow legs with the lovely long toes.
11:00


With all this, we haven't yet seen any Olsen Farm eaglets..  :nope
A distracted wren, as usual. To be continued!




Offline jeavverhey

  • Member
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 1,028
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2015, 07:26:48 AM »
Interesting - nature is so complex and diverse. Nice that there seems to be no conflict between the locals and the visitors. Thanks always for pointing out the details I would otherwise have missed - e.g. short bill. :-)

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2015, 10:54:29 AM »
You're welcome Jeav. My writing is a way to anchor into memory the things I've recently learned. In this case, our three visitors obligingly stood side by side, giving me a live, and clearer, version of Mr. Sibley's drawings. It had never been so obvious. So maybe now I'll remember.  :ecsmile

The other thing I've been learning is that shore birds do often feed and move around in multi-species flocks. It's often interesting to scan a flock with binoculars or take a few photos. On occasion you get some nice surprises, such as this sighting of the Semipalmated Sandpipers.

Offline winterwren

  • HEG
  • Friend of HEGPS
  • Member
  • *
  • Posts: 2,844
Re: Olsen Farm Nest - 2014-2015 season
« Reply #14 on: July 31, 2015, 10:10:33 PM »
More photos from July 4.
When I finally got to the nest, an adult eagle was landing atop the nest tree.

July 4, 10:46





I was pretty sure I heard two separate voices screeping from down below.
They certainly were not as loud as the Heron Rocks eaglet's.

Try as I might, I was only able to see one eaglet, though.
10:50



10:52



The other adult, perched nearby, flew off to the edge of the water to fish. Tide was going out, prime time for catching Midshipmen, so I made my exit.