Medina Journal-Register — Things have been really winding down with the migratory waterfowl. Our local Canada geese are starting to nest and there were a bunch of Northern Shoveler ducks that I was photographing last week that disappeared Friday. There are still a bunch of Ring-necked ducks in the area though.
Roaming around the “swamp” I noticed that the Northern Harriers seem to be pairing up and there has been quite a bit of wood duck activity around my nesting boxes at home. In another month the humming birds will be back!
As mentioned in my last column we have a very unique situation with one of our Bald Eagle nests. There is one immature eagle (a 3 year old) helping a pair of adults at a nest. I have been keeping my eye on this nest for some time in hopes of seeing a successful hatch. This “Three-some” nest situation is very, very rare and did happen at the Montezuma NWR for a number of years and now it is happening here!
Last week I spent the day with one of our retired DEC eagle experts, Mike Allen, and his feeling is that one of our “Three-some” maybe be a Montezuma bird that was raised from that “three-some” nest there and thus is use to that type of situation.
This past week my observations indicated that the eggs were pipping (beginning the hatching process) but I saw no sign that they had actually hatched. This last Sunday morning as I sat in my vehicle watching the nest with my spotting scope I saw the incubating eagle get up and begin tearing bits of meat from a animal or fish body and feeding the young. They have hatched! Over the period of an hour the two adults and the three year old immature were seen feeding the young.
Of course the new eaglet or eaglets are too small to see now as they lay in the bottom of the bowl of the nest and can’t really be seen so I don’t know if there is one or two or possibly three eaglets.
The DEC has put “RESTRICTED AREA” signs up on the dike nearest the nest so that the birds are not disturbed by folks walking. If you are in this area and come upon these signs please turn back. Nothing upsets an eagle more then people walking around near their nest area except for may be another eagle in their territory.
At this point it appears that all four of the eagle nests have hatched out.
Many of the nesting Ospreys are back now too. On the Tonawanda WMA along the Ruddy Marsh dike a new Osprey nesting platform has been put up. The nest that had been being used there was on the double pole power line that goes down that dike. One of those poles were bad and they will have to be replaced so they decided to put a new pole and platform up next to it in hopes that the returning Ospreys would not go back on the power lines. The original nest was taken down from the power lines and placed on the new nesting site. This set-up can easily be seen from Route 77 as the new pole is 70 foot in the air and stands above everything else in the area.
Apparently it has been approved by the Ospreys as I observed the birds working on the new nest site this last Sunday morning.
Most of the nesting Ospreys are back working on their nests. The only ones I have not seen yet are the pair on the pole right next to Route 77 across from the Cayuga Pool Overlook. When these birds return I hope everyone obeys the “No Parking” signs placed along this section of the road. They were put up to keep folks from stopping on Route 77 and looking at the nest.
There is hardly room to put a vehicle off the road here and it a very dangerous stretch of road because of the dips, curves and large trucks flying through. To look at the nest folks can pull into the Cayuga Pool Overlook parking lot and see it quite well from there and are thus not putting anyone or themselves in danger. Stopping on Route 77 to look at the nest also upsets the Ospreys and could cause them to abandon the nest or have a nesting failure. When there are young in the nest and it is hot one of the adults will often shade the young from the hot sun with their body. If the adult is scared off too much the young could suffer a heat stroke and die, so be kind.
Now that warmer temperatures are here it is time to really get out and enjoy Nature. While you are out there don’t spook the wildlife and be courteous to other folks out there enjoying themselves and hoping to also see some of Nature’s marvels.
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To get sportsman’s news and info into The Great Outdoors, call Doug Domedion at (585) 798-4022 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.