Author Topic: MA / Amherst - 2015-19  (Read 9371 times)

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Offline GCG

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #28 on: June 10, 2015, 04:48 »
 ;D My thanks to TPC, Alison and burdi for your explanations clarifications, and photos. I am grateful for this info and now have a better understanding.

Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #27 on: June 09, 2015, 23:58 »
June 4; two chicks.

 

 


Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #26 on: June 09, 2015, 23:46 »
This is Dad, nibbling on eggshell, and caring for the chick and eggs:

 



Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #25 on: June 09, 2015, 23:43 »
Pics of the first chick on June 2:

After hours on the nest, Mom took a momentary break (left); Dad immediately took over, but Mom was back in about a minute.

 

 

Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #24 on: June 09, 2015, 23:38 »
Thanks for the update, burdi! It doesn't make sense to me that they would only treat the younger chick; both chicks need to be treated. I could understand taking them one at a time to be treated, to make it a little easier for the parents.

I hope by tomorrow there will be a more complete explanation/update.

Offline burdi

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #23 on: June 09, 2015, 20:40 »
Here is an update from “UMass Amherst Libraries” on Facebook:

“Falcon update: The youngest chick was removed from the nest, cleaned, sprayed and fed, and then returned to the nest. The two unhatched eggs were removed. They were infertile. Mama falcon protected the nest valiantly. The older chick slept through it all.”


Offline burdi

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #22 on: June 09, 2015, 20:02 »
They have now intervened - and only the larger chick was left in the nest.

Thank you, burdi. Do you know if they treated both chicks? I will be very interested to see what the veterinarian and wildlife officials have to say.

Hoping for the best for both chicks.


I believe they only treated the smaller chick; however, I could certainly have missed something - as just watching on and off. Perhaps they feel the treatment of one chick will help the other from close contact.

I did see a man place the smaller chick back in the nest - but did not see an egg being returned (or the other chick removed).

The parents here are so beautiful; I wish the best for this falcon family.


Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #21 on: June 09, 2015, 19:22 »
They have now intervened - and only the larger chick was left in the nest.

Thank you, burdi. Do you know if they treated both chicks? I will be very interested to see what the veterinarian and wildlife officials have to say.

Hoping for the best for both chicks.

Offline burdi

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #20 on: June 09, 2015, 18:27 »

I watched most of the last 3 feedings here. The smaller chick tried very hard to get food a few times, but almost always fell backward.

After one of the feedings Mom had to pull the little one back to her for brooding, since the poor chick simply could not get up.

They have now intervened - and only the larger chick was left in the nest.


Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #19 on: June 09, 2015, 17:36 »
The first chick hatched on June 2, and the second chick hatched on June 4. Both looked fine at that time.

And no, this isn't a solution if they have louse flies but it can make it easier to gauge effects of parasites or illness when you aren't having to visually compensate when there is more skin showing due to a natural growth spurt.  When  you watch them on camera - or in my case at the moment from still image screen captures, it is always important to know where they are in development.

And you are right Alison, brooding prey remains is not such a hot idea if parasite infestations are a problem.  One of the advantages of cold dry winters and exposed nestsites and nestboxes is that it tends to help keep these kinds of problems at bay.  Not always, but mostly.  It is also why we clean out the boxes in the spring and fall and change out the gravel ever few years.  But mostly cold, cold winters and even some nice baking hot summer weather helps to keep things dry and clean.

I totally understand about the bare patches of skin visible during a growth spurt; have seen that many times. But I think in this case it is something more. From its appearance, I do think this is an infestation of Hippoboscid flies.

And yes, cleaning out the nest boxes and changing the gravel really makes a difference. Statistically, it has been shown to increase hatch percentages and the survival rate of very young chicks.

It is difficult to see what is going on from very small pics. I have isolated the chicks from a couple of the pics in the hope that it will give a better idea.

The dark areas are actually dried blood. The area under the wing is usually the primary site of infestation (first pic). The second pic gives the back view, with more dark areas and a whole lot of missing down feathers.

 

For comparison purposes, here is a photo of Bugsy when he had a very severe infestation, which killed his two siblings:



Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #18 on: June 09, 2015, 16:23 »
The first chick hatched on June 2, and the second chick hatched on June 4. Both looked fine at that time.

I was wondering about the age because in the first week they outgrow the feathers they were hatched in (so to speak) and they often look quite bald (I have a photo of bald peregrine butts!) and bedraggled depending on mom, weather and whether their sibs poop on them (seriously).  Some look cute and white and adorable from day one, some not so much ... or ever.  These guys are in that stage so it will be interesting to see how they look in a week when their second set of downy feathers are in place. 

And no, this isn't a solution if they have louse flies but it can make it easier to gauge effects of parasites or illness when you aren't having to visually compensate when there is more skin showing due to a natural growth spurt.  When  you watch them on camera - or in my case at the moment from still image screen captures, it is always important to know where they are in development.

And you are right Alison, brooding prey remains is not such a hot idea if parasite infestations are a problem.  One of the advantages of cold dry winters and exposed nestsites and nestboxes is that it tends to help keep these kinds of problems at bay.  Not always, but mostly.  It is also why we clean out the boxes in the spring and fall and change out the gravel ever few years.  But mostly cold, cold winters and even some nice baking hot summer weather helps to keep things dry and clean.

Offline Alison

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #17 on: June 09, 2015, 12:53 »
Alison - do you know when the chicks hatched? I ran through the thread quickly and I couldn't see anything to be able to gauge how old they are other than the photos ...

The first chick hatched on June 2, and the second chick hatched on June 4. Both looked fine at that time.

Originally, the first egg was laid on April 6, and not incubated for several weeks. It was incubated along with the other three eggs, but of course was long since not viable. It is the egg which is very dark in colour. The second egg (or the first of a new clutch, depending on one's point of view) was laid on April 29, the third egg on May 1, and the fourth on May 3.

I have not been able to observe many feedings, but as far as I can tell, both chicks have been fed normally. Both parents have been very attentive to the chicks' needs. The chicks have not been left alone or uncovered, which has made it more difficult to see how far this infestation has progressed in a very short time.

Mom has acquired a habit of brooding prey along with the chicks and unhatched eggs, which is not necessarily a good idea.

Offline The Peregrine Chick

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #16 on: June 09, 2015, 09:51 »
Alison - do you know when the chicks hatched? I ran through the thread quickly and I couldn't see anything to be able to gauge how old they are other than the photos ...

Adult peregrines when they feed the chicks are usually pretty egalitarian - and the hungrier a chick is the more it protests which elicits a hardwired response from the parent, so if a chick gets more food a couple of times, inevitably, the other chick will get more food in proportion to how hungry s/he sounds.  If a chick isn't getting enough food there is likely something wrong with the chick not that the parents are neglecting or siblings are hogging all the food (though it does look like it often).  In all the years I have been banding peregrines, by the time they are banding age, they are in the same kind of condition - if one is a little light, they are all light, if they one is a heffalump, they are all heffalumps.  One thing we often forget (us too sometimes) that feedings take place day and night for most pairs and because of lighting for the cameras and/or the fact that we too must sleep sometime, chicks get fed and we don't see it.

Case in point - chick 2 at West Winnipeg right now is still a bit smaller than it's sibling - now at this stage that could be the start of the species' sexual dimorphism showing up in their development or it could just be that s/he is two days younger.  S/he however is not getting less food than his/her sibling and the chick looks to be pretty much at the same stage in their development despite the difference in age which at this point starts to mean less and less.  Another case in point (two points actually) was everyone's favourite Mistral - she had no problem whatsoever demanding and receiving her portion of any meal after about day two.  Her sister Taku was fine up until close to banding age when we notice that one chick was hanging back more during feedings - can't be sure it was Taku or Chinook/Hurricane too full for more - they were Trey's kids so no problem with food availability.

Just some of my thoughts ...

Offline GCG

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #15 on: June 09, 2015, 05:52 »
Some FB comments about the chicks and their issues.

Mary Anne Reid Feed has started. This chick appears to have a serious parasite infestation (I didn't get a good look at chick #2). If this is true, they need to be treated immediately if you wish them to survive. I saw this at another nest several years ago and it killed 3 of the 4 chicks. Please consider intervention. Its an easy treatable problem.
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UMass Amherst Libraries Thank you for your concern. Response from Richard Natthorst: The chicks have mites as do the parents.This is a perennial problem and short of insecticide there is not much we can do about it since they come in on the prey. This is not unusual and ...See More

Mary Anne Reid thank you for your reply!! Yes, I know that most chicks get mites..that's normal...but what we are seeing on these chicks is NOT normal. they may be infested with Hippoboscidae or the louse fly. Its generally not an issue with birds who can preen. ...See More

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Mary Anne Reid I don't wish to be an alarmist, but if you want to save these chicks, they need to be treated ASAP. The other chick never turned over. that is not normal. Its probably because of weakness and anemia..I never got a good look at it, so don't know how ...See More

Donna Ferrari Hoping #2 chick makes it!

Marianne McLaughlin Downing is chck #1 sitting on top of chick #2? I watche them at 6:30 am and both were up and getting fed, but for this feeding, chick #1 seemed to block chick #2? Is that typical?
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Offline GCG

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Re: Massachusetts / Amherst - 2015 / ? & ?
« Reply #14 on: June 09, 2015, 05:42 »
not sure how many chicks, but one egg pushed aside. Appears to be windy. Feathers ruffled and nest moving from the wind
« Last Edit: June 09, 2015, 05:44 by gemcitygemini »