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Thread subject: Nest Hygiene
Name Date Message
Anne 06/02/05 05:26 pm I have been reading that non passeriformes carry out a lot of nest digging to get rid of chick faeces and parasites. The adults will eat the droppings or carry them away. I have witnessed Betty digging a lot but havent actually seen her get rid of anything. I was just thinking of posting this subject when I saw one of the chicks project a great stream of you know what towards the nest rim, just missing Betty! I take it that this will be the norm now?!
Marie 06/02/05 05:45 pm usually the young move right to the edge of the nest, lift their little BTM'S and fire a 'rocket' over the side which should keep the nest fairly clean.
Mickey 06/02/05 08:55 pm Yes Anne it will be the norm now. Clearly the chicks were never taught to do this so it must be one of those things they just know what to do. When they were younger the rockets didnt have enough power to clear the nest. So alot of the poop covered the sticks in the nest. Now fast forward to now and look at the chicks when they are sleeping in the nest and alone. They are perfectly camoflaged amonst all the sticks with that white stripe down their backs. Just one of those things that make you go mmmmmmmmmm nature at work :)
Anne 06/03/05 06:44 am I wondered if the stripes down the chicks backs were for camouflage purposes. They work well..
Marie 06/03/05 08:55 pm Yes Anne...those stripes down the back (their spine) are definitely for camouflage. Any preditor flying over the nest when the parents are away fishing would have a difficult time picking out the chicks in this colouration. They resemble sticks so well that even I have difficulty at times trying to find them when their heads are down and they are perfectly still in the nest.

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Tom Throwe
Last modified: Sat Feb 18, 2006