Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Monday Night

The fire is hovering over the ridge leading to One Horse Creek, right across the valley. And here's an eagle that's terrified of an Osprey, in the smoke. I changed my camera settings to "clouds."

Friday, August 18, 2017

Lolo Peak Fire

Currently 19,000 acres and exploding! Our yard yesterday at 4 pm, and Chinook water drop.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Kill the Kleptoparasite!

Ospreys having some fun with a big bully that stole their fish all spring.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Simon the Owl

Simon the Great Horned Owl joined us in May (first photo)  and is now a teenager with the beginnings of ear tufts! He is part of the family, in the house every day, and will be an awesome program bird.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Parents: Do You Know Where Your Children Are?

Answer: On the top of our eagle enclosure.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Battles on the Beach

Ospreys can rarely resist a pot shot at an eagle. I've said it before, and my non-scientific explanation is that they are getting revenge for all of the fish thefts by the eagles in the spring. Get your own fish, Baldie!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Eggs in One Basket

Sibley the Peregrine laid 16 eggs this year, the beautiful brown flecked ones. They are infertile and at 14 years old I wish she would cut it out. The photoperiod or length of days in the spring causes our birds to think of breeding and the Gyr/Peregrine hybrid Ansel makes amorous chupping sounds for months.This makes Sib think it's time to breed, and she sort of halfheartedly incubates a great mound of eggs. The little ones are just a few that the kestrels produced this year, the the big white one, our Swainson's Hawk's egg. And NO, I don't eat them.

Friday, August 4, 2017


I have had the great pleasure of "entertaining" my brother and his three kids this week, and back to the beach tonight. In the meantime, on Monday this Osprey plunged sub-surface and swam back to shore, just his head showing for much of the trip and hoped he was all right. Another Osprey dive-bombed once and minutes later the answer was revealed - he had nailed a huge Northern Pike as big as he was, that had to be dragged to shore! You Go, Fish Hawk and catch more of those non-native duck-eating evil fish.

Monday, July 31, 2017

Cottonwood Clump

Here comes one of the giant fledglings with what looked like a bird, wow. Then she dropped it and I looked on the back of the camera and blew it up. A chunk of foliage. Like someone on Facebook said, "every birdie has to start somewhere." Father showed up and the begging continued until dark, with minimal Osprey sightings. Crazy light with the wildfire smoke pouring over the Bitterroots to the west.

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Friday, July 28, 2017

Raptor Round-Up #53

Takes a week to write, minutes to read, or just look at the pretty pictures, over 50 of them this issue!
#53 and a bunch of others.

Another Cloud Photo

The Lolo Peak fire is keeping everyone looking to the skies, and this sunset last night.
Then all three fledglings were in the nest tree, but no parents around.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Monday, July 24, 2017


This is the Lolo Peak Fire across the valley last evening at 7, and we can see three other forest fires from our house. And not even August yet...

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Best Osprey So Far

I got this photo at the beach with Tom sitting next to me on a log. Very special, especially as that Osprey missed three fish downstream but scored right in front of us, just before dark, and crazy light with the Lolo Peak forest fire smoke.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Osprey Week

Thanks to our friend Kathy Price, I was treated to a front row view of an Osprey nest in her front yard.  I am installed in a cushy chair, photographing the birds from a room over the garage! Luxury. Three young this year and the second morning I captured one bird's first ever flight as she fledged to a near-by utility pole. Then the female posed with the remaining two. Caught it just in the nick of time, thanks Kathy.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Attacks On the Beach

First is the male adult attacking a poor Great Blue Heron that just happened by, way downstream.
Then something I have never seen: a perched eagle fledgling took off and chased an Osprey, who came back later for vengance! Finally some action after a few evenings of nothing.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Thursday, July 13, 2017


A very quiet last two evenings on the beach, the eagles lingering in the shadows and for some strange reason NO Ospreys all summer! Did see some nice sandpipers and killdeer.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Eagle Fledglings

Two nights in a row I was treated to fledgling antics, two siblings together, the third below in the tree. Our favorite kestrel showed up briefly, showing them who really is the boss. Nothing last night, raptor-wise.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Simon's Web Site Page

A baby Great Horned Owl has joined us from the Wildlife Center of Montana in Helena. Director Lisa Rhodin knew we were hoping to acquire a second Great Horned Owl and took in this downy chick after he was confiscated by authorities. Some people in Chester, Montana were keeping him as a pet and feeding him hamburger, two big no-no's. Federal and State Permits are required to keep all native birds, with strict regulations and reports. So Simon as we named him is an imprint bird, and thinks he's "people." He has spent major time in the office, nights outside in his enclosure. Simon is now listed on our Possession Permit (thanks Linda!) and has joined the Teaching Team.

His debut was in a film for the Missoula Community Access (MCAT) kids camp, then "appearance" on Montana Public Radio (MTPR) with host Annie Garde, guests Bev Glueckert and Missoula Art Museum (MAM) kids campers. He is a natural!

Simon Caddy was a very dear friend and was tragically killed in a motorcycle accident in his home of the UK the week this owl arrived at the Raptor Ranch. We have been pals with the family, meeting his dad Adrian in 2002, a delegate for the International Wildlife Film Festival in Missoula. Simon and his brother Alex were teenagers, staying with us many times, enjoying all things American and raptor. We are in shock with his sudden passing at age 29, and profound condolences to Adrian. As a tribute we are calling the new owl Simon - smart as a Formula One race car driver, super-friendly with a wry wit, enjoying fun and games at all times, and handsome as can be, both Simons. Welcome Simon.
  • Date Acquired: 5/19/2017

Monday, July 3, 2017

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Starring Simon

Missoula Community Acces Television (MCAT) Raptor Camp, Montana Public Radio (MTPR) 
Pea Green Boat, and Bev Glueckert and kids from the Missoula Art Museum (MAM) Raptors and Art Camp. With Simon the owl.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fledge and Pea Green Boat

I was wrong and one of the eagle chicks fledged Tuesday, 80 days after hatching by my calculations and right on the money. He landed practically overhead with Mookie barking so I has to retreat downstream to get a photo with the big lens! He sure didn't mind us, just the swallows attacking. Last night he was chased by a kestrel and flew back to the nest, photos on the way.
And this is our new addition to the Teaching Team appearing on Montana Public Radio today at 4 pm.- Simon the Great Horned Owl hanging in the house.