Monday, April 30, 2007

Feeding at St Johns Part II

Tristan staring at a little white "something" on the right of the nest. Loose feathers? Part of an eyass? (Bottom right corner of photograph.)


6:58:22 Tristan gives a last look, turns quick as a wink and is off the nest. He's stood staring an extraordinarily long time. A delivery to Isolde while she's sitting on eggs usually takes 3 to 6 seconds.

6:58pm Isolde stares into bowl. (Most likely both parents were staring into the bowl during the time we could only see Tristan's posture of staring as he was blocking the view of Isolde. Staring at the eyasses together is typical of RT parents....other species too, come to think of it, including humans.

6:59:51pm Isolde moves prey into position and begins to feed center.

7:04 Isolde makes feeding motions toward right corner of nest. She fed about 4 minutes in other position.

7:07pm Isolde hugely stretches her tail and wing. She fed 3 minutes in second position.

7:08pm Isolde gets into the nest and looks fixedly into the right corner. Eyass?

7:09pm Not a twig moving up there. Rob reappears and reports that Tristan is back up the block again. He's just sitting on his branch looking around, seemingly hanging out. I suggest that maybe he's actually scanning, memorizing prey patterns for another day.

7:17pm Well, still nothing is happening up there that I can see so I decide to go check out Tristan sitting on his branch and see if he's scanning prey patterns for tomorrow.

7:21pm Whoa! Tristan has another rat! Looks to be getting rid of the uneatable bits and starts vigorously pulling at it and taking bites. Sooooo, he wasn't just scanning for another day after all. Guess one rodent wasn't enough for the whole family so he's having his now. I take a couple pictures than realize I should call the others in case they want to come up the block.

All of a sudden, Tristan reverses his direction on the branch, rat still in talons, and looks at the nest with focus. Then he starts to tense as if he's about to take off. Oh dear, he's going to head for the nest. I better get there. I pick up the tripod and start hotfooting it down the hill. "Hey Guys, he's got another rat!" Sam calls back, "What?" I yell again, "Another rat, ANOTHER RAT!" I plop down the tripod, out of breath, "And I think he'll be coming this way!"

7:29:58 And there he is right on cue! Tristan flies 0n to the front of the nest from the tree where he'd prepared the second rodent and had a few bites.

Go to the next post down for Part III.

Donegal Browne

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